The Corner

Would the Line-Item Veto Ruling Invalidate the Slaughter Rule?

Interesting Examiner post by Mark Taspcott, drawing on the work of Amy Ridenour of the National Center Blog. They point out that the in Clinton v. City of New York (1998), in which the Supreme Court held the line-item veto unconstitutional, Justice Stevens’s ruling explained that for a bill to become law, both Houses of Congress must vote on precisely the same text, and it must then be signed into law by the president. As they quote the decision:

If one paragraph of that text had been omitted at any one of those three stages, Public Law 105–33 would not have been validly enacted. [Emphasis added] If the Line Item Veto Act were valid, it would authorize the President to create a different law – one whose text was not voted on by either House of Congress or presented to the President for signature.

Something that might be known as ‘Public Law 105–33 as modified by the President’ may or may not be desirable, but it is surely not a document that may ‘become a law’ pursuant to the procedures designed by the Framers of Article I, Section 7, of the Constitution.

Of course, that was twelve years ago and we now have a Court with more empathy. But if the Dems proceed according to their outrageous plan, the House will not have voted on the same 2,000 pages of paragraphs that the Senate voted on.


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