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One of the founders of Politico holds President Donald Trump in such fear that he’s insisting on rewriting the U.S. Constitution to protect the country from the popular Republican, and likely 2024 presidential candidate.
John Harris wrote that the basic problem is that leftists and liberals in states like California have so little influence in the U.S. Senate. And a full-throated campaign would be needed to make what he insists are necessary changes to the Constitution.
“First, Trump is properly seen as a constitutional menace, but from a progressive perspective many of the most offensive features of his tenure were not in defiance of the Constitution. Instead, they flowed directly from its most problematic provisions. He was in office in the first place because the presidency is chosen by the Electoral College rather than by the popular vote,” he wrote.
“His influence will live for decades because partisan manipulation of the Senate’s judicial confirmation power gave him three Supreme Court justices, who have no term limits and face no practical mechanisms of accountability. Like some other presidents, but more so, he used the Constitution’s absolute pardon power for nakedly self-interested reasons. In short, Trump may be an enemy of the Constitution but he is also the president who most zealously exploited its defects.”
He said that leads to the second issue: “Anyone who is not a Trump backer properly bemoans the breakdown in constitutional consensus that allows his supporters to tolerate or celebrate his election denialism, in addition to other efforts to insulate himself from rule of law. Long-term, however, the more bracing challenge to constitutional consensus is likely to come from the left, from believers in activist government.”
Making the needed changes, he said, would include altering or abolishing the Electoral College, term limits for the Supreme Court, limiting pardons, and taking care of the “infuriatingly murky language” of the 2nd Amendment.
He said the Constitution, however, prevents the changes he wants.
“Most those amendments would be opposed by conservatives — which under the terms of the existing Constitution means they likely would not pass. It takes three quarters of the states to approve an amendment, a provision that gives many small, conservative states wildly disproportionate power over the fate of the nation,” he accused.
“This is hardly a new problem, but it is one that threatens to reach a breaking point. The political scientist Norman Ornstein has popularized an arresting statistic, one that is validated by demographic experts. By 2040, 70 percent of Americans will live in just 15 states. That means 30 percent of the population — coming from places that are less diverse and more conservative — will choose 70 senators. Already each senator from Wyoming, the least populous state, exercises his power on behalf of less than 600,000 people, while each senator from California, the most populous, represents nearly 40 million. This distortion of democracy, already hard to defend, could become the defining
feature of national life.”
He also charged that the nation was founded as a union of states retaining sovereignty. But now, he said, “both national government and national identity have become stronger.”
And he said the answer to the originalist concept is, “Who cares what they thought then?”
He wrote, “So what will happen this time, when amending the Constitution seems improbable but living indefinitely with outdated provisions seems intolerable? History suggests multiple possibilities. A decisive conflict is one answer — the reason talk of a ‘new Civil War’ is increasingly common.”
He predicted a “constitutional showdown” is coming.
A commentary at ZeroHedge said, said then Harris “shreds the founding document.”
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