The executive order is a directive, with the force of the law, which the president of the United States issues to manage operations within the federal government. There are several constitutional and legal bases for issuing executive orders. For instance, Article 2 of the constitution of the United States empowers the president with executive powers to use personal discretion when determining how to manage executive resources or enforcement of the law (Mayer 15). Some Acts of Congress also delegate discretionary powers to the president either expressly or impliedly.
One difference between executive orders and the law is that laws must follow legislative processes such as approval by both houses and signing by the president. Executive orders do not follow this process (Mayer 43-44). Another difference is that Congress may enact laws that override the presidential orders. Moreover, courts may also use existing laws to overturn such orders.
According to the White House, President Trump issued an executive order on May 25th, 2018, outlining the implementation of merit-based principles for enforcing accountability in federal employees regarding their conduct and performance. The order expects employees to adhere to high standards of conduct, integrity, and work while protecting public interest (Rein). Moreover, supervisors are expected to discipline employees who fall short of these standards based on the prevailing circumstances and facts.
In the executive order, President Trump is attempting to improve the efficiency of the federal workforce by holding federal workers accountable for their conduct. The president is also making it easier for federal governments to punish workers who violate their code of conduct, through bypassing traditional disciplinary strategies such as progressive discipline. Generally, President Trump is seeking to improve the quality of services that Americans receive from the federal government. His goal is to ensure that employees are aware of their ethical duty to Americans and they uphold the highest standards of discipline that are expected of them.
Notably, the National Treasury Employees Union, the Federation of Government Employees and a coalition of smaller unions challenged the executive order in court (Ballotpedia). Consequently, on August 25th, 2018, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia dismissed certain provisions of the executive order. The Department of Justice appealed the ruling and oral arguments will be heard on April 4th, 2019.
Personally, I support this executive order since it serves to protect the welfare of all Americans. The order serves the public interest and will benefit millions of Americans who are served by the federal government. By enforcing professionalism within federal workers, President Trump has reminded the workers that they were hired to serve Americans, and they should perform their roles while maintaining integrity, professional standards of conduct, and should serve in the public interest. The likely result of this executive order will be enhanced service delivery for Americans, which will also increase revenues for the federal government.
The executive order is a win for all Americans in business, self-employment, private-employment, and even the unemployed. It is also a win for families and households since the quality of life may improve as a result if increased efficiency by the federal government. In conclusion, executive orders are different from laws through the process they are formulated, and the ability of Congress to create laws that reverse such orders. Moreover, the order made by President Trump will increase the effectiveness of services offered by federal workers by holding them accountable for their professional conduct and ethical principles.
Ballotpedia. Presidential Executive Order 13839 (Donald Trump, 2018), 2018, https://ballotpedia.org/Presidential_Executive_Order_13839_(Donald_Trump,_2018), Accessed 28 Mar. 2019.
Mayer, Kenneth, With the Stroke of a Pen: Executive Orders and Presidential Power. Princeton University Press, 2012.
Rein Lisa. Trump’s executive orders roll back civil-service protections for federal employees. The Washington Post, 25 May. 2018, https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/politics/ct-trump-executive-orders-public-unions-20180525-story.html. Accessed 28 Mar. 2019.
The White House. Executive Order Promoting Accountability and Streamlining Removal Procedures Consistent with Merit System Principles, 2018, https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/executive-order-promoting-accountability-streamlining-removal-procedures-consistent-merit-system-principles/. Accessed 28 Mar. 2019.
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