Perhaps amateur hour in DC is drawing to a close. The Mid-term Election of 2014 is over except for the final tallies and run-off elections in several races. Still, the net result has been determined: the Republican Party gained control of the Senate and strengthened its grip on the House of Representatives. Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell is expected to become Senate Majority Leader while Ohio Congressman John Boehner is expected to remain Speaker of the House.
Also as expected, politicians and pundits alike were quick to declare what the American people were telling DC through the ballot box. Since only one-third of registered voters appear to have bothered to vote, it’s not clear how you can say with any confidence that the election represented the will of the American people.
Another expectation that has been fulfilled are the questions and comments about the perceived need for the Republicans to compromise with the Democrats and President Obama. While it is true that the president holds the veto pen, it is also true that many Democrats may side with Republicans and pass legislation with a veto-proof majority.
Furthermore, while compromising on relatively unimportant matters is laudable, compromising on matters of principle is not. Besides, there is no such thing as a co-senator or co-congressman. The winning candidates and collectively the party or movement that won the majority are the winners. Unless I misread the Constitution, they are not obligated to share their victory with the losing cause. To act like there are co-victors in an election would be an affront to the American electorate.
As for the meaning of this election, I believe the American voters peacefully revolted against a number of things they see wrong with our federal government. The following is a partial list:
- A president who mislead the American people time and time again and was unwilling to admit his mistakes and promptly remedy them
- Obamacare as a real life Frankenstein
- The much ballyhooed stimulus money and programs that produced only marginal improvements in the economy and unemployment
- A seemingly endless stream of scandals involving the Administration
- The unchecked power of the IRS, EPA, and other agencies
- A tax system which is so 20th century
- Constant attacks on our rights protected by the 1st and 2nd Amendments
- Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s false claims that the Republican Party was the reason for gridlock when he holds the power to authorize up or down votes on the hundreds of bills passed by the House
- False claims by many Democrats that the Republicans were waging a war on women
- The U.S. no longer seen around the world as the super power it once was
Sadly, President Obama and Senator McConnell, both career politicians and neither a strict constitutionalist, are unlikely to change their approach to governance in light of the election. However, it was refreshing to listen to the Senator’s direct responses to the questions posed by reporters. A solemn looking man, he was able to dead-pan a couple of remarks during his press conference which, if he’s not a one-trick pony, should add some much-needed levity into Senate press conferences.
For his part, the President tried to be his usual cool, calm, and collected self, but at the close of his post-election press conference was only able to serve as the chief cheerleader for the USA after passing up many opportunities to demonstrate humility and graciousness. He simply was unwilling or unable to see the election results and his low job approval ratings as an expression of dissatisfaction with his policies by the people he helps govern. He remains as obstinate as ever that his ideas for transforming America are the right things to do. It was clear through their questioning and in reports and commentary that even the media, most of whom are registered Democrats, knew the real score.
“The one thing that I want the American people to be confident about is that every day I’m going to be filling up my time trying to figure out how I can make their lives better,” said the lame duck president. Earlier in the session, he even went so far as to say, “I have a unique responsibility to try to make this town [ DC ] work.” Really? All by your lonesome?
Unlike a chastened President Bill Clinton after the Democratic Party he led was subject to a similar lopsided defeat during the Mid-term Election of 1994, and despite numerous opportunities during the press conference, President Obama simply refused to accept responsibility for his party’s loss. He also made the preposterous claim that it is his responsibility to ensure such things like making sure every American has a job, is college educated, and can afford the mortgage. The Harvard educated constitutional lawyer fails to see that in a free market society, not every outcome is pleasant because life is messy not only in DC as he pointed out, but everywhere this side of heaven. Still, our free market society has proven over nearly 300 years that the system of governance created by our Founders ensures that there is a greater likelihood of a positive outcome for the masses than in any other nation in human history. But it is certainly not the president’s responsibility to create a government that guarantees one. To do so robs the individual of personal responsibility and self-reliance along with the satisfaction and security that comes from exercising them.
Happily, despite his tendency to favor big government solutions, Senator McConnell has demonstrated great respect for the Senate as a deliberative body and hopefully he will lead its restoration. Senators are supposed to be the legislators who take a less populist approach to governance than their counterparts in the House who have much shorter terms in office. The longer terms for senators are intended to make them less concerned about their re-election and partisan politics and more concerned about the common good. Of course all elected officials and civil servants should do their jobs heedless of public opinion which has proven to be transient. Besides, public opinion perennially underrates our top priority: national defense, and it is easily manipulated by the media and sophists. Godspeed to all elected officials who have their priorities in sync with our national top priorities and are not out to win a popularity contest.
Speaking of our top national priorities, this election does not change them. In summary and in short, according to the Constitution they remain (1) national defense, (2) interstate commerce and transportation, (3) the administration of the federal government, and (4) other responsibilities specified in the Constitution of the United States. These can be considered our ordinary national top priorities.
However, these are extraordinary times, so extraordinary measures should be taken as soon as possible. Over the last 100 years or so populist presidents, socialist-leaning Congresses, and activist Supreme Court justices exploited the assumptions made by the Founders when they wrote the Constitution and Bill of Rights. The Constitution needs to be amended to protect liberties taken for granted by the Founders. Doing so will also help ensure that we reverse course away from becoming a socialist state. Toward that end, business and organizational leaders along with all citizens of good will should consider supporting a renewal of Constitutional Stewardship which calls for strict interpretation of the Constitution as amended and a Constitutional Convention.
The purpose of a Constitutional Convention as authorized by the Constitution is to consider and propose which amendments, if any, should be considered by Congress. It is not a law-making body. When considering various reform measures, and as I wrote previously, the Liberty Amendments would be a good place for the convention to start.
Lastly, as I also wrote recently, an amendment to define marriage and one to define the term human being are also necessary since the relativist society in which we now find ourselves was not something the Founders envisioned. While you and I may not agree on the definitions, I hope you have the courage of your convictions and support the definitions of your choice. Passing these amendments will surely eliminate a lot of wasted time and money spent debating the issues and fighting each other in court.
President Clinton tried to transform the U.S. into something that American voters rejected handily. He was savvy enough to change his preferred political agenda. President Obama would be wise to do likewise. Nevertheless, well-written amendments can help ensure that even though we may elect leaders in the future who let themselves get carried away with misguided ideology, we can make sure that the damage is minimal and that the U.S. can remain a stronghold of personal liberty.
— GCF —
The observations, comments, and opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the employees, board members, advertisers, sponsors, or affiliates of the publisher or broadcaster. The Copyright © is the author’s who reserves all rights unless otherwise stated. This content is published or broadcast with permission and is distributed by GetCurrentFast.com, a division of American Newzine, Inc.