Friday, January 25, 2008

Bill Clinton and Dick Cheney -- A Note to Andrew Sullivan

In terms of Bill Clinton running around as a Presidential Spouse without accountability:

Is Bill Clinton going to have more power than Dick Cheney? There have been powerful First Ladies in the past. Edith Wilson, of course, and Hillary Clinton to a far lesser extent.

However, Dick Cheney represents something completely new in American history. Vice President Cheney is inventing a new position for himself where he has no accountability, because there are no limits on the power of the Vice Presidency listed in the Constitution (in much the same spirit that the Constitution has no limits on the power of the President's barber).

The Vice President is not directly elected by anyone, so he can't be subjected to the rules of the Legislative branch. He is not subject to term limits, so he can't be subjected to rules of the Executive branch. Yet somehow the nation is adapting to Dick Cheney's new experiment in power. It will do the same with Bill Clinton.

Incidentally, the Framers did place some check on the power of the First Lady/ First Laddy when they stated that the President and the Vice President shall not be citizens of the same state. I am not sure that they had Bill and Hillary in mind when they wrote the Section (or even John and Abigail). What the Framers did have in mind was a situation like the one we are currently in where, for all practical purposes, the President and the Vice President both come from the same state (Texas) and represent the same narrow band of interests. No one seems to care.

Given the Constitutional Crisis of the Month of the Bush/ Cheney years, it amazes me that so many people are willing to turn a blind eye on all of that and just let another 8 years of movement away from our Constitution occur. All because they find the Clintons to be too something or other.

One problem people seem to have with the Clintons is that they are entirely transparent.

People seem to prefer the incredible unconstitutional power grab of the Bush/ Cheney years, and the never steal anything small mentality that marked both the Bush 41 and Bush 43 Presidencies. All done under a shroud of the most self-serving secrecy that money and fear could buy.