There are two types of federal agencies: Cabinet level and independent. Although both are said to be part of the Executive branch, unlike the Cabinet level agencies, the President really has no authority over the “independent.” They work outside the control of the Executive branch.
Independent agencies are created or established through statutes passed by Congress. Sure, a president may suggest a desire for a particular agency, but it must be created by Congress.
A few shining examples of “independent” agencies are the EPA, FCC, and NLRB. I’m sure we agree that they are all doing the Lord’s work.
These bureaucrats work in the dark, with almost no accountability to anyone. They are free to create virtually any regulation they wish and they can’t be fired nor can the president do away with or downsize the department.
Of course, the overwhelming majority of the faceless bureaucrats are liberals, or at the very least, big government progressives. They have to be. If they were true conservatives they (a) wouldn’t have taken the job or (b) if they did, they would soon discover what a waste of taxpayer dollars the agencies are and work to shut them down.
Like people on welfare, government workers are a class of voters that liberal politicians can count on to vote Democrat. Their jobs depend on it.
Unfortunately they would soon find that it’s not possible to shutter these “independent” agencies.
So what can be done?
Like the unelected, unaccountable “inferior” courts, dissolution of these agencies is left to Congress.
Yes, despite what little Johnny Boehner says, Congress has a lot of authority. They just don’t have any courage. Congress has the power to establish “inferior” (lower) federal courts and the authority to dissolve them. It also has the authority to create “independent” governmental agencies and dissolve them.
And if nothing else, it has the power of the purse, as we’ve all heard 1000 times. The House and the House alone is in charge of the federal wallet.
If a majority in Congress decides that a court or agency has overstepped its bounds, which all have, or outlived its usefulness, it may defund them. Without the money to operate, the agency will naturally wither and die as Newt Gingrich has repeatedly said.
When John Boehner states, “What can we do? We are only one half of one third of the government,” you know he is full of crap.
So this fall, when your congressman has the inevitable Town Hall meeting prior to this next election, bring up this topic and see what kind of unintelligent response you get.
You may be saddened, but don’t be surprised if you know more than he or she does.