Rahm Emanuel — Cheney Can’t Get Funding From Executive Branch
Dick Cheney dropped an odd proclamation last week. It appears that he doesn’t believe he’s part of the Executive Branch, and thus is not subject to their rules regarding disclosure. He’s playing with fire, because if he’s outside the Executive Branch, it’s unclear whose rules he falls under. Cheney is hoping that means he’s not under anyone’s rules, but that’s a tenuous assertion to make.
Now, Rahm Emanuel is going to try to call his bluff. Since Cheney doesn’t believe he’s part of the Executive, Emanuel is going to try to make sure his office— and home— aren’t funded as part of the Executive:
Responding to claims by Vice President Dick Cheney that his office is exempt from disclosing information about what it has classified as secret, Rep. Rahm Emanuel (D-Ill.) said Tuesday he will try to cut off the $4.8 million needed annually to run Cheney’s office and home.
Last week, Cheney claimed he is not bound to disclose some national security requirements because, as president of the Senate, he is not part of the executive branch.
Emanuel’s proposal would be attached as an amendment to a spending bill that includes funding of the executive branch and which is expected to be considered by the House as early as Wednesday night. The amendment proposes that no executive funds be used for the vice president’s office, including any money for Cheney’s vice presidential residence.
“He’s not part of the executive branch. We’re not going to fund something that doesn’t exist,” said Emanuel, who is also the House Democratic Caucus chairman. “I’m following through on the vice president’s logic, no matter how ludicrous it might be.”
Seems like a pretty clear interpretation of Cheney’s illogic to me. Of course, Cheney’s office responded with a standard retort:
Cheney spokeswoman Megan McGinn retorted, “I think it is sad that Congressman Emanuel would rather focus on partisan politics than the serious issues facing our country.”
What, because the Constitution, separation of powers, and the ability of “we the people” to engage in oversight aren’t serious issues? Yes, Emanuel’s playing politics. But Cheney’s just trying to make himself above the law. I consider the former a justifiable tactic against the latter.