- Judges: Kimberly Strassel wrote a piece last week titled “Scalias All the Way Down” about how President Trump is quietly remaking the judiciary with conservative/textualist/originalist appointments. Strassel writes:“The president is stocking the courts with a class of brilliant young textualists bearing little relation to even their Reagan or Bush predecessors. Mr. Trump’s nastygrams to Bob Corker will be a distant memory next week. Notre Dame law professor Amy Coney Barrett’s influence on the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals could still be going strong 40 years from now.”
Amen and amen. For too many decades, the right has acquiesced to progressive jurist appointments by Democrat presidents and even steered away from more “controversial” appointments during periods where they controlled the nomination process. Call it cowardice, go along to get along or simply a fear of nominees getting Borked – there has been a true lack of nominees willing to, as Bill Buckley said, stand “athwart history, yelling Stop, at a time when no one is inclined to do so, or to have much patience with those who so urge it”. Policing constitutionality is often more about “yelling Stop” than it is finding a way to torture the document to obtain a desired outcome.
- Congressional responsibility: President Trump is returning power to Congress that has been usurped by the Executive Branch. Rightfully, things like Obamacare funding and DACA (immigration policy) that were taken over by the Obama administrations have been pushed back to Congress for proper action. After showing a spine during the first Clinton administration, later in Clinton’s second term, Congress started to cede its responsibilities to the Executive – something that continued through the Bush years and accelerated during the two terms of President Pen and Phone. Whether it was some issue Congressional majorities found too distasteful to handle or one that might force them to make tough votes that might cause them pain come election day, Congressmen put up little more than token opposition when a president wanted to do something – even as they whinged about how a “unitary executive” would destroy the constitutional balance of power. I do worry about Trump’s tenuous grasp of the Constitution (wanting to challenge broadcast “licenses”, for example) but it seems on some major issues, he is booting the responsibility back to Congress where it belongs.
- Regulatory reform: Trump has issued several EO’s reversing Obama’s push to regulate and even Congress got into the act with the CRA. Randolph May at the Washington Times noted that “using the he Congressional Review Act (CRA) — which had been used only once previously — to nullify more than a dozen Obama-era “midnight regulations.” The CRA allows Congress, with a simple majority vote and the president’s signature, to overturn agency rules if it acts within 60 “legislative” days after notification that the rule is final. Using the CRA, Congress has repealed some of the most controversial and costly regulations from the Securities and Exchange Commission, Federal Communications Commission, and the departments of Education, Interior and Labor.” Even Politico noticed, writing in July that under Trump “major regulations fall off a cliff ‘.
- Disinformation campaign: This is more speculation on my part than proven fact – but I think the Trump administration chose to combat an impossible flow of leaks by planning disinformation and feeding misinformation to a press willing to believe the worst about his administration. The recent stories of how Trump wanted to multiply the national nuclear arsenal by a factor of 10, the fake stories of conflict and discord in the administration (at the cabinet level) and several others have been debunked at the supposed sources. CNN and NBC bite hard on any rumor and interpret any action by this administration in the worst possible way. In the way martial arts teach you to use an opponents weight and force against them, often going with the punches, the Trump administration is using the hostility and animus of the media against them. They feed them stories that are factually dubious and let the media take those rumors to ridiculous ends, often blowing the smallest of issues in to national and constitutional crises. The administration knows the media simply can’t help itself in its zeal to protect Democrats and advance a progressive agenda.
My grandmother was the nicest, most God-fearing woman I have ever known. One trait she displayed in abundance was the ability to find something good in the bad, often finding some good qualities in otherwise bad people, no matter how bad they were. You could be the crassest cretin in town but if you did it nicely, my grandmother would brag on what a good job your parents did in teaching you manners. She never excused bad behavior when she found the good, she just made a full accounting of a person and gave credit where credit is due.
Mammy always told the grandkids to try to find three or four nice things about everybody you meet.
To honor my beloved grandmother, here’s four things I like about Trump:
Of course, that’s just one man’s opinions – but my grandmother would approve that I found four things to like about the President.