11 May 2009 Outrage of the Day: Lobbying the President to Ignore His Oath of Office
Elaine Donnelly of the Center for Military Readiness reports that anti-Don’t-Ask-Don’t-Tell activists are pressuring President Barack Obama to issue an order telling the Defense Department to stop enforcing that law.
The oath of office President Obama, and all U.S. Presidents, took, says: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”
The faithful execution of the executive office requires a President to treat our laws with respect. (If he who is in charge of enforcing the laws does not respect them, why should the rest of us?) If the President doe not agree with a law, his proper course it to urge the legislature to repeal or alter it.
Alternatively, he could resign his position as executive and present himself to the people as a candidate for the legislature.
As President Obama, when a Senator, did not push for legislation to repeal Don’t-Ask-Don’t-Tell, it may be that he is not reluctant to enforce it, and the activists who lobby him are wasting their time. This should be irrelevant, however. The President’s job is enforcing the law; the legislature’s job is creating them.
The activists, if they must lobby at all, should be lobbying the Congress to change the law, not the President to ignore it.