The American Bar Association said the president’s signing statements amount to a “line item veto” that Congress is powerless to override, and constitute a ?threat to the Constitution and to the rule of law.?
WASHINGTON, July 23 ? The American Bar Association said Sunday that President Bush was flouting the Constitution and undermining the rule of law by claiming the power to disregard selected provisions of bills that he signed.
In a comprehensive report, a bipartisan 11-member panel of the bar association said Mr. Bush had used such ?signing statements? far more than his predecessors, raising constitutional objections to more than 800 provisions in more than 100 laws on the ground that they infringed on his prerogatives.
These broad assertions of presidential power amount to a ?line-item veto? and improperly deprive Congress of the opportunity to override the veto, the panel said.
In signing a statutory ban on torture and other national security laws, Mr. Bush reserved the right to disregard them.