Published at Canada Free Press on May 7, 2016
While thinking about the unusual primary season for Republicans (how’s that for an understatement?), with the result being Donald Trump becoming the presumptive nominee of the Republican Party. This season has also lead to the disappointment of many in the print and broadcast media that there will not be a contested convention for Republicans in July.
On the other hand, since everything else in this primary has not been according to traditional campaign standards, there seems to be one contested item for Republicans to settle without the “help” of Donald Trump, which is the selection of the vice-presidential candidate.
Yes, it is traditional for both parties to bow to the selection made by the presidential candidate. But since nothing else this year has been traditional and considering the fact that the vice president is exceedingly important should Trump actually win the election, selecting a competent and acceptable candidate for VP becomes almost more important than the selection of Trump himself.
“How can that be?” you ask. Even though Donald Trump will have one outstanding and stunning potential accomplishment on his record should he win in November. A Trump presidency will accomplish something that no other president in my lifetime has managed, the union of both Democrats and Republicans in opposition to him in Congress.
In earlier presidencies, those members of Congress who shared a political affiliation with the sitting president acted vigorously to defend even the stupidest decisions made by that president. They continuously supported presidential initiatives without question, without analysis, without rationalizing what the president’s initiatives comprised, regardless of any logic, evidence, analyses or rationales of members of the party that opposed the president.
However, when the sitting Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, defers offering an endorsement to the presumed nominee of his own party, it would tend to show that Republicans will not make a knee-jerk practice of defending the initiatives or actions of Donald Trump while he is sitting in the Oval Office.
Nor will Republicans simply looks the other way when “The Donald” decides that their lack of enthusiasm for his policy prescriptions that he claims will cure the national malaise in many areas affecting America will require him to use executive orders, à la his predecessor Barack Obama, and ignore the will of Congress.
In the past during presidential terms of office, if Congress passed a law with which he disagreed, he would veto said law and that would be the end of it. Congress was so contentious they could never get a supermajority vote to override any president’s veto. The contentiousness of Congress would similarly almost guarantee that the ultimate censure of an out-of-control president could never actually be used – namely, impeachment.
This may no longer be the case should Donald Trump actually win in November. Republicans who are not particularly enamored of Donald Trump would join forces with Democrats to throw sand in the gears of his administration.
At the very least.
And more than that, a president who abuses his ability to generate executive orders might find himself threatened with impeachment.
That’s why I refer to this as Donald Trump’s most stunning achievement. He may have finally created an environment where Democrats and Republicans will join forces to take back the authority that was given to them (and limited to them only) in the Constitution and reduce the unilateral ability of the chief executive to not merely enforce law, but to create it without their help or approval.
Should the convention select a strong, qualified individual for the vice-presidential position, it would send a clear message that Republicans, while recognizing the power of the electorate to select the person that they might prefer to fill the top slot on the ballot this November, the Republican “establishment” will clearly show that Mr. Trump will be subject to limits.
After eight years of Barack Obama’s loose interpretation of his constitutional authority, that might be a very welcome speed governor on the executive branch in Washington.