President Bush has quietly claimed sweeping new powers to open Americans' mail without a judge's warrant, the Daily News has learned.Nevermind that the Constitution says the Congress gets to make the laws. Nevermind that similarly clear issues of separation of powers have been decided in the past. Nevermind that the action Bush asserts is his right was explicitly criminalized by the Congress. All you must remember is that George W. Bush is good, and he protects you from people that will kill you and your whole family. Now, once a Democrat occupies the White House I'm sure we'll hear about what an affront to our nation's political heritage these Bush-powers are, but by then it may be too late.
The President asserted his new authority when he signed a postal reform bill into law on Dec. 20. Bush then issued a "signing statement" that declared his right to open people's mail under emergency conditions.
That claim is contrary to existing law and contradicted the bill he had just signed, say experts who have reviewed it.
Bush's move came during the winter congressional recess and a year after his secret domestic electronic eavesdropping program was first revealed. It caught Capitol Hill by surprise.
Here's a Kieth Olbermann bit about which parts of the Bill of Rights we're left with after this Administration. It's from many months ago. Watch it.