Living in a Republic that We May Not Keep
In the previous post I pointed out that there have been (and will continue to be) social and political issues for which compromise by finding the “middle ground” isn’t a realistic option. Thus, when people pine for those lost times when compromise ruled the day they are imagining a past that never existed. However, they are correct in believing that something from our past has been lost.
That “something lost” is a shared commitment to our Republic as founded through our Constitution and Bill of Rights. That shared commitment broke down entirely during the Civil War. However, aside from that tragic failure it has managed to hold even when issues upon which compromise was difficult or impossible to find roiled the nation. Using the two examples from the previous post, the nation was able to hold together even when faced with terrible win/lose situations. Yes, there was great acrimony and sometimes even violence. But the parties on both sides of these issues didn’t break from republican values (as defined in our Constitution and Bill of Rights).
What we are experiencing now is a powerful desire by one political group, the Progressives, to “fundamentally transform” the foundations of our nation’s political life. And this group has come to dominate the Democrat Party. Thus, the Progressives have achieved fundamental transformation of the Democrat Party and are using this institution to seek fundamental transformation of the United States.
Many people would like to ignore this seismic shift. However to not take note is to be purposefully blind, as its proponents are screaming their views from the roof tops.
Abolish the Electoral College
Many Presidential candidates in the Democrat Party are openly pledging to abolish the Electoral College because it, in 2016, prevented them from winning the Presidency. This is a popular position with the party’s base, as explained in this article.
Elizabeth Warren kicked things off at a CNN town hall Monday night when the Massachusetts senator drew enthusiastic applause by saying: “Every vote matters, and the way we can make that happen is that we can have national voting, and that means get rid of the Electoral College.”
The next day, former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke said there was “a lot of wisdom” in abolishing the Electoral College. California Sen. Kamala Harris told late night host Jimmy Kimmel on Tuesday night that she’s “open to the discussion.” Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana, tweeted a clip of him saying the Electoral College “has got to go.”
Were they to somehow achieve this end our Republic would indeed be transformed from a federation of states into a direct democracy completely dominated by our major urban centers. Of course this transformation would benefit the Progressives. But it would also nationalize the urban political dominance that has led to great anger in states like New York and Illinois. I very much doubt that citizens in states like Nebraska or Alaska would accept such an outcome.
In normal times I’d be confident that the rules for Constitutional change would prevent this from occurring. However, given the demonstrated will to power by the Progressive movement it’s not beyond belief that extra-Constitutional means could be brought to bear. The consequences of such a move are unpredictable, but could well be dire for the nation’s life.
The Union of American Socialist States
I have previously discussed how even partial implementation of the Green New Deal (GND) would necessitate transformation of the United States from a democratic republic to a socialist police state. But this end doesn’t in the slightest prevent our Democrat presidential candidates from giving it rhetorical support. I take small comfort in their refusal to vote for it on the record. However, were they elected they would likely take that result as a mandate to implement the GND even if they dissembled and outright lied to the voting public about their intentions in the campaign.
So Much More
The Progressives have also clearly communicated their intention to repeal our Constitutional protections contained in the First, Second and Sixth Amendments. There is also pressure to abolish the Senate. In these and other areas the Progressives who now control the Democrat Party have made it crystal clear that there is nothing in our founding documents that they will not destroy if it diminishes their ability to seize and keep power.
In the next post I’ll discuss what this means with regard to what has been really lost.