Tuesday, June 03, 2014

President Obama and Executive Orders

It is being said that President Obama is over-fond of issuing decrees in the form of Executive Orders. The answer is yes - and no.

The graph below shows how many Orders each US President has issued, and it is clear that the twentieth century has seen an enormous increase in the use of this legislative tool.

I find it harder to get similar information on UK Orders in Council, but the picture is clear: the Executive has become addicted to short cuts in the exercise of power. There is certainly something to worry about, but equally certainly President Obama should not be seen as culpably exceptional.

(Click to enlarge)


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