Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Just in case you wondered whether Donald Trump knows we live in a constitutional republic (He doesn't)

Just a question: How can we trust that Donald Trump is going to nominate Supreme Court justices who respect the Constitution when his own rhetoric betrays an almost complete lack of respect for our republican form of government?

Not only does Trump himself, on a daily basis, advocate purely democratic processes in the electing of a president--processes which the founders themselves shunned in institutions like the Electoral College--but he has now deployed his equally ignorant sons to articulate the same anti-Constitutional principles.

On Sean Hannity's radio show yesterday, Donald Trump, Jr. that the delegate selection process in the Republican Party presidential nomination process was a sign that we are "not a democracy anymore."

Um, yo, Donald, Jr., we have never lived in a democracy. We live in a republic. A republic has a lot of democratic elements in it, but is representative all the way down. In fact, there is no aspect of decision-making in America's republic that is anything other than representative. No one gets together and directly votes in any decision made by government. Not the executive branch (whose chief executive is selected by the Electoral College, which Donald Trump must really hate), not the Congress (whose members, like Republican delegates, are free to defy those who elected them), and certainly not the judiciary.

Some of these offices are directly elected, but no decisions are made except by representation, directly (as in the House of Representatives and the Senate (after the 17th Amendment)) or indirectly (as in the Supreme Court).

The Republicans have a delegate selection process that is also representative and no one who wants to change it because it is representative in nature should have any pretensions about being in favor of the American form of government.


TheSarge said...

It’s totally relevant to question who Donald Trump’s nominees to the Supreme Court might be. To tell the truth, it’s a question that I’ve been asking myself since February the 13th (Justice Scalia’s death).

I hate to say it but I’m probably going to vote against the devil I know (Hillary) in favor of the buffoon I don’t know (Trump). So, who might Trump nominate? Who knows? However, we may be certain that Hillary’s litmus test for her nominees will be their adherence to the mythical “Living Constitution”.

Also, it might be worth mentioning that sometimes even the most conservative intentions don’t work out. (For instance, Bush the Elder’s appointment of David Souter and Eisenhower’s appointment of Earl Warren).

Let’s face it: either way, we’re in deep you-know-what. I’m reminded a bit of an illustration from a 1972 edition of MAD magazine (don’t mean go give away my age or source of knowledge but there it is) in which Lady Liberty is holding her torch with one hand but is holding her head in her other hand, obviously weeping. On each side of her head are the grinning visages of Richard Nixon and George McGovern. I think that pretty much sums up the presidential election of 2016.

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