Photo by Samantha Sophia on Unsplash

Executive Overreach

We have seen the role of the Executive Branch change in our hundreds of years as a nation. George Washington averaged only one executive order per year during his presidency. While these orders peaked during the Great Depression and both World Wars, we now find our executive on track to sign nearly one hundred executive actions per year with no extensible cause for such an upswing.

Additionally, we see executive orders of the same premise remitted and recanted between administrations of differing political ideologies, causing operational whiplash of those agencies affected by these on again, off again policies.

Moreover, a number of historical examples exist of the executive branch committing American soldiers, funds, and arms to overseas actions without prior approval from the Legislative branch – the only branch of government with the capacity to declare war. Our forefathers built this limitation against the executive branch so that one elected official could not unilaterally drive the nation into a war without significant due diligence and debate as to the effect it would have on the American people and the rest of the world.

We must take action to place a limitation on executive actions, in which congressional approval of those actions must be voted on within fifteen calendar days of their signature and prior to their taking effect. This forces these actions into immediate public and congressional scrutiny, creates operational stabilities between executive administrations, and, in the case of non-time sensitive strategic military engagements, prevents unilateral actions of the executive branch that may unwittingly commit our nation to any military involvement that may act as a precursor to war.