Cheney: The Great Constitutional Question Explained

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This exchange yesterday in the White House briefing room struck me as awfully familiar:

Q Dana, as long as we’re talking about branches of government, can you go back to Vice President Cheney again, the argument that he’s not part of the executive branch. Does the President believe he’s part of the executive branch?

MS. PERINO: I think that that is an interesting constitutional question, and I think that lots of people can debate it. I think when we were talking about the EO from last week, we’ve gone over that several times. You probably don’t want me to go over it again. But the Vice President — any Vice President has legislative and executive functions.
Every Vice President has legislative and executive functions. The executive functions are given to him by the President. For example, the Vice President’s paycheck comes from the Senate. So these are — that’s an interesting constitutional question. When we are talking about this EO, it is separate and apart from — the President and the Vice President oversee the executive agencies. Supreme Court precedent shows that the Vice President and the President are not seen as an agency when it comes to executive orders.

And then I remembered where I had heard something like that before:

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