By Laura Carno
Where do you stand on the current state of the Presidential election?
Feel The Bern.
Feel The Johnson.
I’m With Her.
None of the Above.
I have heard all of these Presidential campaign slogans in the past 24 hours —all from people I know personally. Yet the two front runners, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have record negative poll numbers among primary voters and among general election voters. The President we wish we had is never coming. So what is a responsible registered voter to do? This is a Presidential primary year, and we know we must do something.
We. Must. Do. Something.
I propose a different way to look at this Presidential election. Whomever we have in the Oval Office, the Executive Branch is but one of three co-equal branches of government. And the federal legislative branch offers a substantial constitutional check and balance on the power of the executive office.
- A nominee to the Supreme Court cannot be confirmed without a compliant US Senate.
- The President can sign a bill only after it has first passed through both houses of Congress.
- Two-thirds of the members in both houses of Congress can override a Presidential veto.
Additionally, the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution offers protections to the states against federal overreach.
If your candidate for President didn’t make the finals, don’t walk out on the entire election season.
Do whatever you need to do at the top of the ticket. Then look at what you can do to provide a check and balance to the next occupant the Oval Office, regardless of who that is. The President is one person —a powerful person— but just one person. There is much more you can do.
- Work to elect consistently principled local candidates, especially your state legislative candidates. They provide a check on federal overreach. Consider the leadership qualities it takes to stand up for what is right and what is constitutional.
- Work to elect consistently principled Congressional and US Senate candidates. Consider the leadership qualities it takes to stand up for what is right and what is constitutional.
Focusing your energy on down-ticket races will help to provide the backstop necessary to place a check on the powers of the President. I’m not excited about any of the choices for President. If you are as concerned as I am about who our next President might be, then our obligation is to minimize the negative impact they will have on our country.
We have a system of checks and balances for a reason. Let’s use it.
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