Independent State Legislature Theory

A theory floated in Bush v Gore could radically change American elections.

Abortion and the Filibuster

Assuming they had the votes, should Democrats carve out yet another exception?

On American Parties

More on primaries with a foray into Madison and the general politics of power-seekers and incentives.

Of Laws and Men

Our system lacks accountability.

Manchin Opposes Democracy

Or, at least, he’s willing to kill democracy in order to save it.

Sinema’s Misunderstanding of the Senate (and of Basic Politics)

The post really isn’t about Sinema as much as it about a theory of poltiics.

Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

Trump’s Final Meltdown

The President of the United States is an existential threat to the Republic.

Gridlock is not a Feature, it is a Bug

Gridlock doesn’t mean government stops. It just shifts who is governing.

Is Federalism the Real Problem?

A fundamental building block of our system makes it nearly impossible to fix.

How the Electoral College Perverts Democratic Politics

Thinking about wildfires and electoral politics.

US Party System Evolution

A quick overview and some examples to start a longer conversation.

Hungary Goes Full Authoritarian

Orban has used Covid-19 to kill whatever vestiges of democracy remained.

American Gerontocracy

Is being ruled by the elderly a bad thing?

Trump’s Acquittal and American Democracy

Has this precedent permanently damaged the country? Or is it just politics as usual?

On Impartiality in the Senate Trial

Let’s be clear-eyed about this.

The Framers Aren’t All They’re Cracked up to Be

The men who gathered in Philadelphia to write the Constitution were geniuses. But they couldn’t predict the future.

Checks and Balances are not What they are Cracked up to be

Alliance to party trumps alliance to branch.

Two Federal Courts Hand Trump Defeat On Border Wall

Two Federal Courts have blocked the Administration from diverting Defense Department funds to pay for the President’s border wall

House Intelligence Committee Releases Impeachment Inquiry Report

The House Intelligence Committee has released its report resulting from its investigation of the Ukraine scandal.

This is What Support for Authoritarianism Looks Like

Rich Lowry puts preferred outcomes over constitutional process.

Country First, Or Trump First? Republicans Face A Choice.

Republicans face a choice. Do they put their country first, or do they put their President first?

White House Doubles Down On Stonewalling

The White House is doubling down on its illegitimate stonewalling of valid Congressional document requests.

Congressional Oversight is not Overreach

While the scope of Federal power has expanded beyond the ken of the Framers, this is not an example.

The Reaction To Justin Amash Reveals Just How Far Gone The GOP Is Today

Justin Amash’s call for impeachment of the President, and the Republican Party’s reaction to it, is telling us a lot about the current state of the GOP.

A Duty to Impeach?

Does the House have an obligation to proceed with impeachment?

Judge Orders Halt To Trump’s ‘National Emergency’ Border Wall Funding

A Federal Judge has put at least a partial hold on President’s Trump’s effort to use a “national emergency” to fund his border wall.

Today in Terrible Electoral College Columns

No, abolishing the EC would not turn farmers into serfs.

Trump’s Stonewalling Increases Pressure On Democrats To Pursue Impeachment

As the Administration continues to stonewall legitimate requests from Congress for documents and witnesses, pressure is growing on Speaker Pelosi to authorize the opening of an impeachment inquiry.

Republican Congressman Justin Amash Joins Calls For Trump’s Impeachment

Republican Congressman Justin Amash has always been a rebel within his own party, now he’s making that even more apparent.

Thinking Through the Impeachment Process

Forget high language about constitutional prerogatives. This is about parties and elections.

On Angels, Ambition, and Institutions

More Madisonian musing on the current state of our constitutional order.

Back to Ambition Countering Ambition

Back to Fed 51 and this moment in oversight: we have to remember what ambitions drive politicians.

Partisanship, Separation of Powers, and the Limits of Oversight

As I have noted before: party trumps institutional pride. The Barr testimony is just another example.

Impeachment?

Some say yes, others no.

Despite Donald Trump, America’s Institutions Are Prevailing

It’s been a rough two years under Trump, but America’s institutions are surviving.

Judge Finds Trump Administration Broke Law With Citizenship Question On Census

A second Federal Judge has found that the Commerce Department violated the law when it moved to put a question about citizenship on the 2020 Census form.

Republicans Face A Choice: Do They Support The Constitution, Or Trump?

Republicans face a choice in the coming days. Do they support the Constitution, or do they support Donald Trump? You can count on them making the wrong choice.

ACLU Files Lawsuit Against Trump Over ‘Emergency’ Declaration

The American Civil Liberties Union has joined the list of groups with lawsuits against the President’s declaration of a “national emergency” at the southern border.

Some Context for Presidential “Emergency Powers”

There is a bit of a disjuncture between the terminology and the reality (but that does not excuse Trump’s current actions).

Trump’s ‘National Emergency’ And The Law

President Trump’s impending decision to declare a national emergency to get funding for his border wall will quickly face serious legal challenges. It may be more vulnerable than the White House suspects.

Party Trumps Institutional Separation

Don’t expect the Congress (i.e., the Senate) to pull us out of this shutdown mess.

Using A ‘National Emergency’ To Build A Border Wall Would Be Illegal

President Trump is claiming that he could use authority to declare a “national emergency” to build his wall even if Congress doesn’t authorize it.

Democratic Senators Sue Matthew Whitaker, Asserting His Appointment Is Unconstitutional

Three Democratic Senators are suing the Acting Attorney General, asserting that his appointment was unconstitutional.

The Constitution And Trump’s Temporary Attorney General

President Trump’s selection to serve as Acting Attorney General does not appear to be Constitutionally authorized to serve in that position.

Democrats Grab Hold Of House, Republicans Make Gains In Senate In Mixed Results Midterm

As expected, the midterm elections ended up being a split result that gives Democrats and Republicans alike reason to celebrate.

An Unsurprising, yet Disturbing, Headline

On Trump’s anger.

The Incoherent Nature of Nancy MacLean’s Narrative

A Duke history professor uncovers “stealth plan” by “fifth columnists” who are seeking to overthrow democracy in the U.S. for their plutocrat masters.

Changes in Turkey

By a narrow margin, Turks voted for some significant changes.

Do Presidential Pardons Still Make Sense?

Obama has issued more commutations than all his predecessors combined. He set the single-day record Monday.

The Third And Thankfully Last Presidential Debate of 2016

Last night’s debate, sadly, lived down to my expectations.