Conservative Quin Hillyer has long been an advocate of restraining the power of the executive branch under both Democratic and Republican presidents — and now he thinks it’s time for the United States Senate to clamp down on President Donald Trump.
In his latest column for the Washington Examiner, Hillyer argues that the strongest defense of Trump’s conduct lies in an expansive view of executive power that makes the president virtually unaccountable for any wrongdoing.
“Their theory of an uber-powerful president is constitutionally bogus and, worse, quite dangerous,” he writes.
He then argues that Trump’s decision to hold off legislatively approved military aid to Ukraine for his own political benefit was a violation of Congress’s most vital single power.
“In the case of Trump’s delay of statutorily mandated military assistance to Ukraine, a delay about which he wrongly refused to inform the Senate, one overcome only after the whistle was blown against him and which even then resulted in a failure to distribute $35 million by the legal deadline, Trump actually transgressed upon the single most important authority of Congress, namely the power of the purse,” he argues. “Therefore, he didn’t merely fail to abide by limits on a power assigned largely but not exclusively to him. Instead, he directly contravened a power assigned primarily to Congress.”
In promoting his column on Twitter, Hillyer also refers to Trump’s abuses of executive power as “the worst I’ve seen.”