Representative Wolf on COG, the State of Emergency and Congress’ Failure to Comply With the Law
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In response to the call to action outlined in the article “To All Readers: Help Force Congress To Observe the Law on National Emergencies!!!” by Prof. Peter Dale Scott and former Rep. Dan Hamburg (D-CA), I emailed and faxed Senators Jim Webb (D-VA) and Mark Warner (D-VA), and Representative Frank Wolf (R-VA). In my letter I noted that former President Bush declared a “State of Emergency” on September 14, 2001 and continued it every year since then, and I asked why Congress has not yet met to “consider a vote on a joint resolution to determine whether that emergency shall be terminated", as Section 1622(b) of the National Emergencies Act requires them to do, every six months following such a declaration. I also asked if Congress, the Executive and the Judiciary are “operating according to the Constitution, or according to the rules of Continuity of Government”, as the Continuity of Government procedures enacted on 9/11 have never been formally rescinded.
The only one to respond as of today, May 3, 2009 is Wolf; my letter to him and his response are posted at Scribd.com, and the text of each is pasted below. April 27, Wolf sent me his reply, and included a copy of the Congressional Research Service (CRS) Report, “National Emergency Powers”, but did not answer either of my questions, instead saying;
"Dear Mr. Larson,
Thank you for your recent e-mail requesting information on state of emergency declarations and the National Emergencies Act. I appreciate your comments.
I understand your concerns and have enclosed a report from the Congressional Research Servicing providing information on national emergency powers, which includes a list of all such declarations since 1976. I hope it provides useful information.
Again, thank you for contacting me and I hope you will continue to inform me of issues of importance and concern.
Frank R. Wolf
Member of Congress"
This is the text of the letter I faxed to him (and Webb and Warner) on March 24, 2009:
Dear [Representative Wolf, 202-225-0437],
Former President Bush declared a State of Emergency on September 14, 2001 and continued it every year since, including in 2008.
I would like a written response as to why Congress apparently has not met its statutory obligations under Section 1622(b) of the National Emergencies Act, which states that: "Not later than six months after a national emergency is declared, and not later than the end of each six-month period thereafter that such emergency continues, each House of Congress shall meet to consider a vote on a joint resolution to determine whether that emergency shall be terminated."
When will the Houses of Congress meet to consider a vote on this very important issue?
Continuity of Government procedures, enacted on 9/11, have not been formally rescinded; are Congress, the Executive and the Judiciary operating according to the Constitution, or according to the rules of Continuity of Government?