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thehill.com

In his first term, for example, he told immigration activists who were pressing for unilateral action that he did not have the authority to "waive away the law Congress put in place." Fast forward a few years, and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had located the power to confer "lawful status" on at least 4.3 million illegal aliens - a measure specifically rejected by Congress.....

Similarly, during Obama's first term, administration officials indicated that they did not have the power independently to raise the minimum wage or increase benefits for federal contract workers. Then, in Feb. 2014, President Obama signed Executive Order 13658, which raised the minimum wage for hundreds of thousands of federal contract workers.....

President Obama's unilateral joining of the Paris Accord is particularly audacious. There are generally two types of international agreements - treaties, which must be ratified by the Senate, and Executive Agreements, which do not.
Senate ratification is required when agreements legally bind the United States to action or to a financial commitment. Thus, the best that can be said for the Paris Accord is that it is a nonbinding, executive agreement....

Harvard Law Professor Larry Tribe, who once mentored President Obama and argued on behalf of Al Gore in Bush v. Gore, called the Clean Power Plan a "power grab" that, among other things, usurped the authority of Congress to make the law. "Burning the Constitution," he writes, "should not become part of our national energy policy."....

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