Originally, the U.S. Constitution intended the Federal government to check itself and balance power via three branches of government – legislative, executive and judicial. These checks and balances were vital for two reasons: (1) to ensure that the government remained limited but effective, and (2) to assure that citizens’ rights were protected.
Up until about 1910, Congress used its powers to enact laws, appropriate money, levy taxes and declare war (or not). At that time, the President had limited powers. The office did not have the extensive administrative agencies that later evolved, eventually migrating more governing control into the Executive Branch. Today their roles are reversed, with Congress now constrained in their powers and the President having immense influence. We need to fix this and re-establish the checks-and-balances power of Congress.
Congress and the President seem to be in a constant battle. And they are.
I propose a simple roadmap to solve this problem and return us to a more efficient and effective government. It involves re-establishing the proper balances of powers – which means Congress grabbing, or “clawing back” power by:
Empowering the Speaker of the House by changing the rules of Congress to let him/her name and fire chairmen and subcommittee chairmen, and name members of the rules committee;
Resume rooting out corruption and assuring compliance with the law;
Establishing committee chairmen who also have the power to set priorities and conduct oversight for their committee scope;
Retaking control of the rulemaking process from the Executive branch to assure regulatory consistency and reasonableness;
Transferring the judicial functions of the Administrative Law Judges (ALJ’s), now working for the President, to the Judiciary.
Empowering the states by changing federal agencies into “Interstate Compacts.”