President Trump will not be up for re-election until 2020. But the news media, both political parties and people at large from all points on the political spectrum seem determined to make President Donald Trump the focus of voter attention in the upcoming midterm elections.
To be sure, this is partly a function of President Trump’s attention-getting style and personality. But it is also a symptom of the deterioration of the form of government the people of the United States ordained and established as they ratified and subsequently maintained the Constitution.
Lincoln called it a government “of the people, by the people, for the people.” Many think that this is synonymous with “democracy.” But it’s important to remember that “the people of the United States” includes all the people — the few who are rich as well as many who are poor. It includes elites, who in other times and places would be called aristocrats or oligarchs, as well as those referred to as ordinary or common folk. It, therefore, encompasses both outstandingly powerful individuals, families, and corporations and people relatively bereft of power.
In practice, this all-encompassing understanding of the people was far from fully realized in fact. But with every passing generation, it grew more so.
By the mid-20th century, a larger proportion of people had the opportunity to act as members of the sovereign body of the people of the United States than in any comparably large and diverse nation in human history. And, contrary to the dreams of power mongers like Nancy Pelosi, it was also more and more true that the choices people made in the voting booth mattered very much to the composition of power at all levels of government.
The framers of the U.S. Constitution never intended that the will of the majority of the people (almost the literal meaning of “democracy”) would rule without compromised or constraint. Majority tyranny was never the Constitution’s goal. But neither was rule by the preponderance of power, so often concentrated in the hands of relatively few.
What we call the system of “checks and balances”—including the separation of powers, the bifurcation of the legislative branch and the independence of judicial decision in respect of each case that they before the courts—aimed to provide safeguards and avenues of expression and action to both the many and the few, the rich and the poor, etc.
The deliberations during the Constitutional Convention — and the ratifying process in the 13 original States — confirmed the view that the Congress was to represent the people and the state governments, which were the focal point of the people’s ability to act in concert. The Congress was vested with the ability to tip the balance of government powers decisively.
This is why only the Congress has the power to remove any civil officers of the other branches of government, the Chief Justice of the SCOTUS and the President—when there is sufficient political will. When the people at the grassroots share a sufficiently common sense of urgency, priority, or grievance, the Constitution provides them with the means to prevail.
In our day, however, it seems that everything about the extra-Constitutional political system that took root in the early 20th century effectively distracts or seduces people into forgetting their responsibility for determining the balance of power in their governments. They are encouraged to see elections as opportunities to ratify of complain about how their “rulers” behave. They have mostly lost sight of the fact that they themselves are supposed to rule.
In line with this usurpation of power, the perceived power to make laws — which the Constitution vests exclusive in Congress — has shifted to the mostly unelected bureaucrats and judges who populate the other branches.
So “executive orders” issued by the President are spoken of as laws when, in fact, they are supposed to be directives authorized by laws approved in Congress. Judicial decisions, in particular cases, are construed as law, when in fact they are supposed to be applications of law in particular cases, with no force or bearing except on the case before them.
Instead of choosing legislators, consciously apprised of their responsibility to represent and responsibly preserve the sovereignty of the people, they have morphed into managers and overseers, charged with assuring and registering the people’s support for what their betters have decided, not making decisions informed by the voters whose common goodwill and character they are supposed to represent.
It is easy to blame this degradation of self-government on the political and bureaucratic creatures who supposedly inhabit the Washington swamp. They certainly bear their share of the blame.
But the leading lights of America’s founding generation repeatedly made clear the constitutional Republic they established could not survive it the people lost the character and self-discipline required to sustain it. It is a telling fact that the phrase Lincoln famously used in the Gettysburg address echoes the words of John Wycliffe — in his preface to the famous English translation of the Bible he helped to produce.
The America people came into their sovereignty relying on an appeal to God’s authority.
Now they must reclaim the key Constitutional repository of their sovereignty using the opportunity the Congressional elections provide. Though the leadership in both parties seem content to co-operate in the elitist faction aim of overthrowing that sovereignty, one does so behind a mask of respect for the Constitution, while the other subscribes to an ideology based on imposing oligarchic rule by force and repression, means which they now more and more openly espouse.
I advise voters who care about maintaining the sovereignty of the people to regard the party labels with suspicion. But remember the fact that far more GOP representatives in the House are likely to co-operate in turning out their self-idolizing, elitist, swamp-minded leadership.
Most Democrats in both House and Senate follow their leaders on the path to elitist dictatorship because they embrace that goal. They also aid and abet forces like ANTIFA, which openly proclaim their goal — “NO BORDERS, NO WALL, NO USA AT ALL.” Frankly, that slogan openly declares war against America’s core identity, a war many Democrats in leadership have been waging for decades.
Like Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York, they deride the whole history of our nation. They remember the injustices we had to fight while forgetting the majority of Americans who eventually, and repeatedly, turned against those injustices. They deride America because they espouse socialist government by and for Party dictators, including, of course, themselves.
Without it, America never was worth anything in their eyes, and never will be. Can our nation ever be safe from such deeply convicted treason against her liberty? Not until the socialist/communist speciously Democratic representation in Congress has been cut back to a stump. Again this November, American voters will have the chance to advance toward that goal. Pray God they will!
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.