The door to dictatorship is wide open

The American Revolution was a gift from God, to the entire world. Thirteen loosely-allied, rag-tag colonies went up against the mightiest empire on Earth, and against all odds, prevailed. And in prevailing, they established a new form of government, based on the assumption that all men are created equal – that we don’t need a king to rule over us, that we can govern ourselves, by democratic processes, in a republic. 

Then they wrote an ingenious Constitution, establishing a government with three co-equal branches, each with the power to check the other. They did this mostly and mainly to prevent the rise of a dictator who would destroy the republic. And this Constitution, with its balance of power, has successfully safeguarded the freedoms granted to us in the first 10 amendments, collectively known as The Bill of Rights, for 237 brilliant, priceless years. The freedom of speech. The freedom of religion. The freedom to keep and bear arms. The freedom from unreasonable search and seizure. And all the others. And that revolution of freedom has reached far and wide, waking billions of formerly benighted people to the possibilities of liberty from government oppression.

Without that system of checks and balances between three co-equal branches of government, however, our rights as American citizens come under direct threat, and the candle flame of liberty may more easily be snuffed out.  The Congress’ coequal status lies in its ability to impeach the President, and from that power flows the Congress’ power to oversee the administration and demand accountability.

This President’s strategy has been to simply defy the Congress, in its constitutionally authorized subpoenas of witnesses and documents. He allowed nobody from his administration to testify before Congress. On his orders, no documents were turned over. When Congress sued, he slow-walked the courts as he always does, to prevent the Congress from doing anything about it, while he blatantly cheats in the upcoming election.

By choosing to turn a blind eye to the unprecedented obstruction of Congress by the current President, the Senate Republicans have destroyed that balance of power. Congress is no longer a co-equal branch of the U.S. government. No President need ever cooperate with any Congressional committee in any investigation of his or her administration, ever again. The impeachment power is dead, and the Senate Republicans are the ones who have killed it, and along with it, their own ability to check the abuses of this or future Presidents.

The Senate Republicans have written the President a blank check, to cheat all he wants to, in the upcoming election. We may never have another free and fair election in this “land of the free.” They have also left only the courts standing in the way of this would-be dictator, this frank admirer of Vladimir Putin. And the courts are no problem for Donald Trump. He has been clogging them up and slow-walking them for years. That’s his business model. He has appointed more judges than any President in American history. The courts will not stand in his way, and even if they did, he would appeal to the Supreme Court. The Republican-appointed judges on the highest court in the land are unlikely to have any more courage to stand up to this tyrant than the Senate Republicans.

The door to dictatorship is wide open. If you ever wondered what you would have done, if you had been a German citizen during the rise of Hitler, now is your chance to find out. At stake is not just liberty in the Divided States of America, but freedom throughout the world.

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