by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Jay Cost offers comfort at National Review Online to those who worry about the power of the presidency under Donald Trump.
It is pretty clear that one of the purposes of Trump’s Twitter feed is to drive people crazy, and for the life of me, I don’t know why people rush to take the bait. They seem to go out of their way to do so, as well — taking him literally or figuratively, depending on what gins up the outrage.
Funny as this can be sometimes, I’m mostly angry over the whole spectacle. This is no way to run a republic. The executive office has become too ornamented, too powerful above the rest of us. The president is far too able to dominate our political discourse, not to mention the mental health of the nation, for his own purposes. Trump did not create this anti-republican monstrosity, but he is making use of it — apparently for the glorification of his own ego.
The good news is that a lot of people are having second thoughts about the “imperial presidency” in the Age of Trump. …
… And while the rise of the imperial presidency has a certain ineluctable quality to it when viewed from the perspective of history, it is required by neither the Constitution nor the necessities of self-government. Put bluntly: We the people could tame the president if we really wanted to. Doing so would require us to focus more on Congress, encouraging members of that institution to reclaim the authority that they have surrendered over the last hundred years, and demanding that they wield that power for the good of the nation.