Bill Maher, one of TV land’s most liberal voices, nevertheless took to his blog to suggest to his fellow left-leaners they might not want to cheer so loudly when President Obama issues executive orders because one day, the tables could turn and it might be Republicans at the helm, doing the same.
“One day,” he wrote, “liberals won’t like executive orders so much.”
Maher, who hosts “Real Time” on HBO, referenced the renaming of Alaska’s Mount McKinley to Denali, and the new requirement for companies contracting with the federal government to provide a certain amount of paid sick leave for workers, both of which Obama accomplished via executive order.
Maher said that while he agrees with both those policy outcomes, he nevertheless takes issue with how they were achieved.
“Okay. Again, probably something I agree with,” he wrote. “But I also used to remember a time when things like this [sick leave order] and the Denali thing were bills and they were introduced in Congress and went through a ‘legislative process’ to see if they had ‘popular support,’ at which point they were either ‘signed’ or ‘vetoed’ by the president. In fact, both paid sick leave and renaming Mount McKinley were bills that failed to get through Congress.”
Maher referenced the “dysfunctional Congress” and said that situation, in part, has fueled the trend of issuing executive orders.
“Executive orders are the new legislation, and if a president wants to get anything done during their term, they’re going to have to issue a lot of them,” Maher said. “Which makes the stakes for 2016 higher than usual. And not because ‘we face a crossroads in history’ or because ‘this is the most important election of our lifetime’ or any of the other hyperbole we hear every four years. It’s because the president is now more like a king. And if a Republican wins, you can get ready to have your benefits slashed, your immigration laws enforced differently, and all your mountains named after Reagan.”