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Checks And Balances

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NEWS
July 12, 1987 | By Rep. William H. Gray 3d
The ceremonial session of Congress to be held in Philadelphia on Thursday comes at a time when some of the basic principles of the Constitution are under sharp attack. The shocking revelations in the Iran-contra hearings last week showed how the current administration, in it's conduct of foreign policy, tried to circumvent laws established by Congress and escape accountability. At the same time, the President is asking for changes in the Constitution and new authority over the budget that essentially would destroy the balanced system so carefully constructed in 1787.
NEWS
May 3, 2006 | Dave Lindorff and Barbara Olshansky
Dave Lindorff and Barbara Olshansky are coauthors of "The Case for Impeachment: The Legal Argument for Removing President George W. Bush from Office" Who would have thought, just seven years after the Clinton impeachment farce, we'd again be considering impeachment? Yet here we are, five years into the Bush presidency, and again impeachment is in the air. For some time, opponents of the Iraq War have been calling for impeachment. You could see their signs at marches, but given Republican control of the House, it was hard to take the idea seriously.
NEWS
May 26, 2005
I'D LIKE TO thank Sen. Rick Santorum for comparing Senate Democrats to Nazis. It strengthens my resolve to help get him out of office. First Sen. Bill Frist accuses us Democrats of being against people of faith (I go to Mass every Sunday, pray the rosary three times a week), and now Santorum compares us with Hitler? How does this represent supposedly Christian values by hurling insults at the opposing party because they disagree with the majority? Doing away with the filibuster is giving up our protection of checks and balances.
NEWS
March 23, 2006
A TOTALITARIAN government does not come into being in one fell swoop. It begins with the erosion of individual and personal rights. It continues to grow when the leaders refuse to adhere to any checks and balances and press their own agenda. If we speak against the top guy, he reaches back in history, to ploys used by Sen. McCarthy and some world dictators. He labels his enemies with an "ist" or "ism" and calls them an enemy of the state and spies on them. They were communists, now replaced by terrorists.
NEWS
November 16, 2010
During this past election, voters ousted members of the judiciary who did nothing more than render controversial decisions ("Targeting judges," Nov. 9). One of the most important safeguards to our liberties is the separation of powers. Since the founding of this country, the executive, legislative, and judicial branches have had different functions and have served as checks and balances on each other. Targeting judges, who decide controversial cases, undermines this most basic aspect of separation of powers.
NEWS
June 22, 2012 | By Jennifer Lin, Inquirer Staff Writer
A major change in how the Philadelphia Housing Authority is governed advanced a step Thursday night after the state House voted, 163-28, to approve a bill that would empower the Mayor's Office to select all of the agency's commissioners. The Senate must vote again on the House version before it is sent to Gov. Corbett. Mayor Nutter, who lobbied for the legislation, was hopeful the bill would pass, given that the Senate had approved an earlier version by a 49-0 vote in December, said his spokesman, Mark McDonald.
NEWS
October 27, 2006
Rep. Smith not best pick for Congress Re: "Despite long tenure, big war chest, GOP incumbent is put on the spot," by Rusty Pray, Oct. 20. The Inquirer story quotes Republican New Jersey Congressman Christopher Smith as saying the election, "despite how poisonous the situation is in Washington, is about who has the majority and how we can get checks and balances back. " These are brave and principled words. But they come, with fine irony, from a ranking member of the party that has done more to destroy checks and balances and the fundamental rights of Americans than any political party in our history.
NEWS
November 21, 1987 | By Frank Langfitt, Special to The Inquirer
Attorney General Edwin Meese 3d yesterday implored fellow conservatives to preserve the fruits of the Reagan revolution by resisting the centralization of government. During a speech last night at Villanova University, Meese criticized past Democratic administrations as plodding bureaucracies and asked for the support of conservatives to ensure that "we will never again see the centralization of power in the federal government. " He also said that he thought the greatest legacy of the Reagan years was the President's appointment of judges who he believed would continue a tradition of judicial restraint.
NEWS
October 5, 1988 | By Gabriel Escobar, Daily News Staff Writer
The "Uzi-toting" drug dealers plaguing city streets will be removed only if Guardian Angels are allowed to have them "sucking concrete" until police arrive, Curtis Sliwa said yesterday. At a news conference in front of City Hall, the founder of the Guardian Angels said the group would patrol city streets only if members were allowed to use their controversial "slam and jam" tactics. The tactics resulted in the arrests in New York City this summer of a number of Angels who got into fights with drug dealers.
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NEWS
November 12, 2012
By David M. Kennedy Barack Obama made history in 2008. It may now be his fate merely to mark time. Obama's election as the first black president closed a chapter - though surely not the book - in America's long, vexed racial history, just as John F. Kennedy's election amounted to a major cadence in the nation's turbulent religious history. Kennedy proved to be both the first and last Catholic president, in the sense that Catholicism has never since defined political identity as it did for most of the republic's first two centuries.
NEWS
June 22, 2012 | By Jennifer Lin, Inquirer Staff Writer
A major change in how the Philadelphia Housing Authority is governed advanced a step Thursday night after the state House voted, 163-28, to approve a bill that would empower the Mayor's Office to select all of the agency's commissioners. The Senate must vote again on the House version before it is sent to Gov. Corbett. Mayor Nutter, who lobbied for the legislation, was hopeful the bill would pass, given that the Senate had approved an earlier version by a 49-0 vote in December, said his spokesman, Mark McDonald.
NEWS
November 24, 2011
British theologian Charles Haddon Spurgeon once said, "We write our blessings in the sand, and we engrave our complaints in the marble. " That comment, made more than a century ago, seems so appropriate to America today, where those who profess to be the most red, white, and blue of patriots, who crow that this nation is truly exceptional, otherwise act as if they no longer have faith in its ability to overcome its problems. Maybe as they gather this day with family and friends to reflect on those things for which they are truly thankful, such critics will include not just a blanket endorsement of America's symbols, but an acknowledgment that, warts and all, our government is preferable to any other on Earth.
NEWS
November 16, 2010
During this past election, voters ousted members of the judiciary who did nothing more than render controversial decisions ("Targeting judges," Nov. 9). One of the most important safeguards to our liberties is the separation of powers. Since the founding of this country, the executive, legislative, and judicial branches have had different functions and have served as checks and balances on each other. Targeting judges, who decide controversial cases, undermines this most basic aspect of separation of powers.
NEWS
September 26, 2010 | By Mark Fazlollah, Nathan Gorenstein, and Jeff Shields, Inquirer Staff Writers
From almost the moment he arrived in 1998, Carl R. Greene began dismantling the checks and balances at the Philadelphia Housing Authority. As his success as executive director grew, so did his control, records and interviews show. For years the agency was left without a permanent inspector general - a watchdog post now empty. PHA's internal legal staff was gutted, the lawyers replaced with outside firms selected by Greene. The human-resources staff was downsized. And although PHA for decades had regularly provided the city with the authority's audits, Greene stopped that, too. He also refused to testify before City Council, saying PHA was a state agency and Council had no authority over it. After firing Greene last week for allegedly covering up four sexual-harassment claims filed against him by female employees, the PHA board must now rebuild the system of checks and balances Greene so deftly, and completely, disassembled.
NEWS
March 3, 2010 | By Chelsea Conaboy INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A bipartisan committee trying to make New Jersey a friendlier place for business heard a long list of suggestions yesterday. Give judges the final say on permit appeals. Create a process to flag conflicting state laws. And allow regulators to issue waivers to environmental regulations and other rules when appropriate. At a public meeting of the Red Tape Review Committee at Rowan University, several speakers targeted the Department of Environmental Protection, calling its mandates unwieldy and its enforcement inconsistent.
NEWS
August 25, 2009 | By PHIL GOLDSMITH
AS INTERIM chief executive officer of the Philadelphia schools in 2000-2001, there were many days I wished I'd a magic wand to make board members disappear. I had a job to do, so how could I answer all their questions, from the mundane to the important to the inappropriate? So I can understand how School Superintendent Arlene Ackerman might've been frustrated by inquisitive SRC member Heidi Ramirez, who recently announced her resignation, citing her frustration at being ignored.
NEWS
July 5, 2009 | By Carlos Pineda Pinel
In 1688, King James II rid himself of the laws of Parliament and was swiftly replaced by William III in a coup, which gave birth to England's modern parliamentary democracy and bill of rights. Military force was used to replace the lawful king, yet nobody would deny the legitimacy of England's "Glorious Revolution. " The removal of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya last Sunday by the military under civilian orders is being called a coup all over the world, and it certainly bears its signs.
NEWS
October 24, 2008
Iraq conundrum We bombed and invaded Iraq so it could become a democracy. Now that it is, we warn the Iraqis that if they do not accept a security agreement on our terms, there will be "real consequences" ("Washington warns Iraq to say yes to security deal," yesterday). What are we going to do, invade them again? I. Milton Karabell Philadelphia Not Penn's jinx Forget this jinx nonsense ("Will higher power lift Penn's curse?" Wednesday). If anything would upset William Penn about his statue atop City Hall, it would be that the sculpture had been created at all. He was a modest fellow who objected to King Charles I's insistence that the colony be named after Penn's father for fear it "would be looked upon as a vanity in me. " A man who disdained superstition, Penn probably would be disappointed that, in his enlightened Pennsylvania, some believe gluing a tiny statue atop a tall building could affect a sporting championship.
NEWS
October 5, 2008 | By Kevin Ferris
To: Staff, National Constitution Center From: Board of Trustees Re: Change We Can Believe In January 2009 brings a change in leadership to our beloved Constitution Center, as former President Bill Clinton becomes trustee chairman. As our director said, "This is a real coup for us. " Amid the excitement, we feel it's time to make other changes, enhancements that are only now possible thanks to the wealth of contacts and knowledge our new chairman brings to the table.
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