Donald Trump is dangerously close to the Presidency. As of this writing he is favored to win in pretty much every model that I can find.
As an American, I am both scared and upset. I have many friends who are genuinely terrified for their safety and for their place in the USA. I sympathize wholeheartedly with my fellow Americans who don’t find a place for themselves in Trump’s America.
Fortunately, the Founding Fathers foresaw this election.
In the creation of the separation of powers, the Founders understood Democracy as an imperfect but appropriate medium of choice in politics. They understood that the ideals of democracy make the mechanisms of power susceptible to imperfect populism. That principle is at play in the election of 2016.
To balance this imperfection, they created the Separation of Powers.
Unfortunately, this is an ideal that has not received the deference it deserves in the recent political dialogue. The Founders envisioned a country that did not have the same people or group of people make the laws, carry out the laws and judge the disputes between the citizens. This is a crucial counterbalance to what might be a populist but misguided Trump Presidency.
Donald Trump is not fit to be president, but Donald Trump will likely be our President. Fortunately, we have the Congress and the Supreme Court to balance a Trump Presidency
It has always been a position of those in power to disregard the separation of powers as an obstacle to progress, whether it’s President Obama’s executive orders on immigration or the imperial Bush presidency. Those who favor the party in power gradually expand the constitutional authority of their favored party to continue to enact more of their agenda.
This is not correct. It is a just cause of the opposition party to maintain the power that the Constitution affords their minority position so that they can be an effective counterbalance to the party that is in power because democracy is an imperfect mechanism and often results in injustice if left unchecked.
As i’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, Obama’s executive orders on immigration open the door for a President Trump to issue far reaching executive orders on immigration. This is not acceptable. As an admirable Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska has pointed out, the political dialogue in this country has become so sophomoric that the mechanisms of government that maintain long-term justice have been reduced to a political trench battle between East Capitol St NE & First St SE and 1600 PA Ave. The trenches are in between, and the political middle ground always involves constitutional atrophy.
It’s time of the Congress to step up. It’s time for liberals and conservatives alike to understand that democracy and populism are imperfect but favorable mechanisms to decide the balance of power in a free country, but that separation of powers is the critical mechanism to prevent tyranny of the majority and ensure justice in our system.
It is my wish that those who supported Hillary Clinton will understand that they really support the protection of the political minority, whichever color jerseys they wear, rather than Democrats as a whole. It is my wish that the Democrats of this election will remember this moment the next time they inevitably gain power. It is my wish that all Americans treat the next minority with the deference they deserve, and they’ll not deride the gridlock of the opposition as obstructionism but as a healthy, Madisonian exercise in justice.
Tyranny of the majority is the greatest threat to our health as a nation. No amount of progress is worth the erosion of the political processes that prevent the worst aspects of the impending Trump presidency.