In 1992, McDonald’s opened its first franchise in Beijing, Microsoft released Windows 3.1, AT&T released a video telephone that cost about $1500, Space Shuttle Endeavor completed its maiden voyage into space, and President George H. W. Bush signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
The Senate ratified that treaty as it was written at that time, as the Constitution specifies must happen for any treaty to be valid, and President Bush signed it on October 15, 1992 — just a couple of weeks before he would lose to Bill Clinton (and spoiler Ross Perot).
Decades later, President Barack Obama is seeking to use that treaty as a Trojan Horse to push his extreme environmental agenda onto an unsuspecting, and ailing, US economy, according to the New York Times.
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is working to forge a sweeping international climate change agreement to compel nations to cut their planet-warming fossil fuel emissions, but without ratification from Congress.
In preparation for this agreement, to be signed at a United Nations summit meeting in 2015 in Paris, the negotiators are meeting with diplomats from other countries to broker a deal to commit some of the world’s largest economies to enact laws to reduce their carbon pollution. But under the Constitution, a president may enter into a legally binding treaty only if it is approved by a two-thirds majority of the Senate.
Our adjunct constitutional law professor in the Oval Office knows that. He has a plan to get around it.
“There’s a strong understanding of the difficulties of the U.S. situation, and a willingness to work with the U.S. to get out of this impasse,” said Laurence Tubiana, the French ambassador for climate change to the United Nations. “There is an implicit understanding that this not require ratification by the Senate.”
American negotiators are instead homing in on a hybrid agreement — a proposal to blend legally binding conditions from an existing 1992 treaty with new voluntary pledges. The mix would create a deal that would update the treaty, and thus, negotiators say, not require a new vote of ratification.
That’s probably illegal, but our adjunct constitutional law professor in the Oval Office isn’t overly concerned about that.
Aware that the Democrats are likely to lose the Senate, Obama will pursue his agenda without the people’s representatives, and will knowingly set up a constitutional controversy, maybe even a crisis, for the sake of “climate change.”
The Obama administration’s international climate strategy is likely to infuriate Republican lawmakers who already say the president is abusing his executive authority by pushing through major policies without congressional approval.
“Unfortunately, this would be just another of many examples of the Obama administration’s tendency to abide by laws that it likes and to disregard laws it doesn’t like — and to ignore the elected representatives of the people when they don’t agree,” Senator Mitch McConnell, the Kentucky Republican and minority leader, said in a statement.
Obama can do this because he’s a scofflaw who knows full well just how unlikely even a Congress under full Republican control is to discipline him, and because of that 1992 treaty that Bush signed in a futile attempt to burnish his own environmental credentials.
Obama will do this because he will never face the voters again, and because jobs and a strong US economy are the farthest things from his mind and his agenda.