Monday, June 25, 2007

Vice-President for Life?

I wrote earlier about my paranoia that since the 22nd Amendment does not give term limits to the Vice President, that Dick Cheney might seek a third term.

Further evidence came this week when it was reported that Dick Cheney believes that the Vice President is not a member of the Executive Branch , and is not subject to Congressional oversight.

A lack of outrage over this on the Republican side of the aisle only adds fuel to my speculation.

Since the President is term-limited, and the Vice President is not term limited, wouldn't it stand to reason that the Vice President thinks he is more powerful than the Executive?

Since Senators and Congressmen have to face the voters, and the Vice President does not (you're not allowed to vote for, let's say, a Kerry-Cheney ticket), wouldn't it stand to reason that the Vice President feels he doesn't have to answer to the Legislature?

It doesn't appear that the Framers had much in mind when it came to the Vice President. I'll talk more about that in another post.

Whatever the intent of the Framers, it is important to remember that the Republicans who forced the 22nd Amendment term limits onto the backs of a free people, were terrified that there might be another liberal President like FDR. These term limit supporters were the same McCarthy-loving Republicans who Dick Cheney considers to be his political fathers.

But even that bunch was not concerned about the power of the Vice President. As nutty as they were, they were realistic enough to know that under the Constitution, THE VICE PRESIDENT DOES NOT HAVE ANY POWER! Because it would have been very easy, at the time, for the Republicans to have added the Vice President to the 22nd Amendment term limits provisions.

Maybe the best solution would be for Al Gore to run for Vice President again, and just follow the path that Dick Cheney showed him. This way Al Gore can increase the money going to the environmental/ global warming/ alternative energy movement in the same way that Dick Cheney sends money and power to independent military contractors and oil companies.

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