Joe Biden allows the deep state to threaten democratic government

Donald Trump is a “threat” to democracy. If Democrats are good at one thing, it is staying on message. But for all their crying about his being a grave danger to the nation, liberals have been silent as President Biden enables perhaps the greatest threat to a government held to account by its own voters with the growth of the administrative state. Over just a few short weeks, he has signed more than two dozen executive orders, many of which will result in an untethered and unelected army of bureaucrats who could have an increasing role in the daily lives of Americans.

The constitutional authority to create laws that influence our society falls to Congress. Over the years, however, the legislative branch has abjured its Article One role and has opted to pass bills which give agencies in the executive branch vast power to create rules which citizens have to follow. The orders from Biden bolster the power these agencies of administrators have over citizens. Through vague notions of environmental activism and intersectional race theory, Biden is establishing an unanswerable cadre of federal regulators with power beyond that under Barack Obama.

Within days of taking office, Biden has taken action that should be left to Congress. His order naming climate change as the critical part of foreign policy would increase the power of the Environmental Protection Agency and its 13,500 staffers, as well as the new Council of Advisors on Science and Technology to seek regulation which would affect the economy and labor market. His order providing the Department of Housing and Urban Development the power to review fair housing rules will increase federal influence on suburban housing. His restoration of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals is the same immigration policy which Obama himself had once famously admitted he could not enact without Congress.

The free market energy policy of Trump is being replaced by one granting more power to bureaucrats. Ending the Keystone Pipeline means jobs lost and a major element of energy independence out of reach. The theme to bring science back to the White House provides cover for new mandates whether or not they support scientific discovery. From the coronavirus to the environment, the broad strokes by Biden hand authority to officials no one voted for. Such power is harmful when subverted by special interests. Even after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said reopening schools is safe, the administration has bowed to the influence of teachers unions and paused efforts to send children back into classrooms.

The most significant danger to this system of checks and balances is the authority of the president flanked by an army of faceless bureaucrats. The creation and enforcement of each policy will route through Biden and the cabinet agencies. Biden has reversed constraints on the influence of civil servants. The limits that Trump set on the amount of time federal workers could do business with unions on the taxpayer dime is now history, along with mandates that would make it easier to fire inefficient staffers.

One of the new orders hands power to file a report on the $15 minimum wage not to the Congressional Budget Office but rather to the Office of Personnel Management. Further, proposals to cancel student loan debt will circumvent Congress and largely be overseen by the Department of Education. Each of these items represents a drip of ceded power toward Washington. Meanwhile, revoking the critical precedent set by Trump of removing at least two regulations for each new one created means such power of federal agencies will continue to grow instead of wither.

For all the concern about Trump and his tone or insults, the true threat to democratic government was never that former reality television star who promised to drain the swamp. Instead, it is the power shift in policy away from elected members of Congress toward government workers sitting in federal buildings. The rising assumption of power in the executive branch is nearly irreversible. A change in party could reverse specific orders, but will almost always increase the power of the administrative state.

When the executive orders start to mandate issues like critical race theory, the seizure of guns, and a climate emergency, the folly of appeasing such deep state government control of the White House and these bureaucrats will become unmistakable. As Winston Churchill declared, an appeaser is one who feeds the crocodile while hoping that it will eat him last.

Kristin Tate is a libertarian author and an analyst for Young Americans for Liberty. She is a Robert Novak journalism fellow at the Fund for American Studies. Her newest book is “The Liberal Invasion of Red State America.”

Tags Congress Democracy Election Government Joe Biden President Washington

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