It’s not easy keeping up with Trump’s contradictions, bizarre bragging, blatant lies and general ignorance of how government functions. And, yeah, the fact that he doesn’t seem to realize there’s this document called the Constitution.
The list is endless, but let’s zero in on an issue that is near and dear to us: the recent budget appropriations bill, which we thought contained a clear provision that barred the Justice Department from interfering with the implementation of state laws regarding the use of medical marijuana.
However, when Trump signed the bill this past Friday, he issued a signing statement, in which he implied he might decide to ignore that provision, which we know as the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment.
This is what Trump wrote in the signing statement: “Division B, section 537 provides that the Department of Justice may not use any funds to prevent implementation of medical marijuana laws by various States and territories. I will treat this provision consistently with my constitutional responsibility to take care that the laws be faithfully executed.”
By using the words “implementation of medical marijuana laws,” Trump is strongly implying that his duty to enforce the federal ban on weed, which does not make any exception for medical use, could induce him to disregard the appropriation bill’s specific lack of funding for the Department of Justice to go after medical marijuana.
This is a failure of logic—seen time and again in Trump’s decisions, statements and wild spree of executive orders.
Why? Because the laws that Trump is obliged to “faithfully execute” explicitly state that Jeff Sessions’ Justice Department will receive no money at all to interfere with state medical marijuana programs.
Steve Bell, a senior adviser at the Bipartisan Policy Center, told Bloomberg News that, “It is the constitutional prerogative of the Congress to spend money and to put limitations on spending.”
Bell described Trump’s signing statement as “an extremely broad assertion of executive branch power over the purse.”
What else is new?
Trump’s wide swings on important issues are no surprise to anyone. He has made it clear that he has no grasp of history or how to run a business, much less a country.
Now, it seems, Trump is blatantly trying to diminish, or totally usurp, the power of elected officials to decide how taxpayers’ money will be spent.
Trump seems to believe that he possesses the power to interfere with the autonomy that individual states have under the 10th Amendment, which protects states from federal overreach (AKA states’ rights).
Much has been said about Trump contradicting his own stated position in support of medical marijuana prior to, and during, the campaign, as well as Sean Spicer reiterating that position on several occasions.
But let’s be realistic about the man. His lies and contradictions are too many to count. Although the New York Times made an attempt and fact checked his first 100 days. The Times logged at least one false or misleading claim per day on 91 of his first 99 days
Read it and weep.