Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. The Road to Tyranny Begins Here

 

This has been percolating for some time now but the elevation of Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court is going to accelerate the debate and push the following into the mainstream of our politics: The Senate must be abolished or altered so significantly as to render it powerless in the nation’s business.

Before I begin to lay out the arguments that are being presented, let me preface this with the following disclaimer — the Progressive Left is not interested in your civics lessons or talk about the history of the Constitution. For them, the United States is fundamentally flawed and any argument you may wish to make is evidence that you share the same inherent misogyny and racism of the Founding Fathers. You must defend it on their terms and on their terms only.

The Senate, according to the Progressive Left, is undemocratic and non-responsive to the will of the people. It is fundamentally unfair for the smallest state in the Union to have equal representation to, say, California or New York. In just a few short years, goes the argument, up to 70 percent of the population will have but 30 percent of the voice in the upper chamber. As they see it, these smaller states are just too damned Republican and abolishing the Senate in its current form will finally — finally — remove that cancer from the body politic.

As an added benefit, if the Senate is abolished then the rationale behind the Electoral College goes with it. Direct election of the President will allow the urban centers to completely dominate the process.

Next comes the call for the House to be turned into a true body of representation. The state houses must not be allowed to draw Congressional Districts. Many on the left are proposing eliminating districts altogether. First comes the call to for all districts to be “at large,” and then the seats will be divvied up according to the percentage of the vote the parties receive. After that the seats will be further subdivided by demographics. The House must be made to “look like America.” This will, of course, make party chairs the ultimate kingmakers, but that’s ok since the folks pushing these schemes have every intention of being among those that hand out the crowns.

The rallying cry is, and will be, “proportionality.” As the Democratic Presidential primary season kicks off in the next couple of months after the midterms, make sure that word is on your debate bingo card. You will be hearing it a lot. You were promised “the fundamental transformation” of the United States. And you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

ADDENDUM: Also on your debate bingo card should be a square about the “illegitimacy” of the Supreme Court. They are also laying the foundations for either completely neutering the rulings of SCOTUS and/or presenting a scheme to begin expanding the membership to turn a 5-4 court into a 6-5 court (or greater).

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  1. Judge Mental Member

    Given that each of those ideas would require a constitutional amendment (or a civil war), and that about 35 of the state legislatures are in Republican hands, I don’t see them getting 23 red states to sign their own political death warrants.

    The question is whether they will bother with the constitution.

    • #1
    • October 8, 2018, at 11:01 AM PDT
    • 20 likes
  2. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Judge Mental: The question is whether they will bother with the constitution.

    That’s the rub, isn’t it? And that’s why delegitimizing the court or packing it will be a priority. The Roe argument may be nothing more than a red herring in the Kavanaugh debate. I think Progressives fully understand that the worst blow to unlimited abortion rights will be limits on access in the third trimester or returning the question to the states.

    Their eyes are on a much larger prize.

    • #2
    • October 8, 2018, at 11:12 AM PDT
    • 13 likes
  3. Judge Mental Member

    EJHill (View Comment):

    Judge Mental: The question is whether they will bother with the constitution.

    That’s the rub, isn’t it? And that’s why delegitimizing the court or packing it will be a priority. The Roe argument may be nothing more than a red herring in the Kavanaugh debate. I think Progressives fully understand that the worst blow to unlimited abortion rights will be limits on access in the third trimester or returning the question to the states.

    Their eyes are on a much larger prize.

    The counter strategy would be to start splitting those big square states into pieces. Create 40-50 new states that are of the same size as the ones on the northeast.

    • #3
    • October 8, 2018, at 11:16 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  4. James Lileks Contributor

    Twitter this weekend, from Ocasio-Cortez: “It is well past time we eliminate the Electoral College, a shadow of slavery’s power on America today that undermines our nation as a democratic republic.” The delegitimizing of the troublesome institutions will use rhetoric like this for battle-space prep. You support the Electoral College? You’re defending slavery.

    • #4
    • October 8, 2018, at 11:30 AM PDT
    • 24 likes
  5. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    All of this would take a Supermajority to achieve and they will not get that. There is no way to eliminate the Senate, nor can they wipe out Congressional Districts. At best, they can get States to move from “all or nothing” to dividing up their EC votes based on the popular vote. 

    There is no way, in any form, that the Senate will follow a Supreme Court Ruling that takes away their power might lead to the first mass removal of judges in history.

    • #5
    • October 8, 2018, at 11:40 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  6. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Uncannily, @ejhill, those were exactly — point by point — the words my 24-year-old grandson, who is heavily into Democrat politics, made to me yesterday in a phone conversation. Except, of course, that he saw those a very positive goals.

    Were you reading from a secret Democrat position paper?

    • #6
    • October 8, 2018, at 11:54 AM PDT
    • 12 likes
  7. Columbo Member

    The Founders understood the benefits of a Republic versus a Democracy. With wisdom.

    • #7
    • October 8, 2018, at 12:16 PM PDT
    • 16 likes
  8. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Jim McConnell: Were you reading from a secret Democrat position paper?

    Twitter. Most tyrants are impressed with their own intellect. They will happily write down their plans and share them, believing that their common sense and genius will persuade you to make it so. 

    • #8
    • October 8, 2018, at 12:16 PM PDT
    • 16 likes
  9. James Gawron Thatcher
    James Gawron Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    EJ,

    The tremendous foresight of the Constitution/Federalist Papers becomes evident in exactly the distribution of Senators between big and small states. Without it, the big states would completely dominate so as to swallow the smaller states whole. Giving the smaller states a chance to form a coalition around their joint interests against the larger states interests, allows an equilibrium of power that enforces mutual coexistence and ensures the stability of the country as a whole.

    Right now the EU is a prime example of no concern for the smaller states. The entire so-called United States of Europe is actually being run as a German-French cabal. Policies are being rammed down the throats of the smaller states both economic and social. The cabal continues to run the show but slowly smaller state by smaller state anti-EU governments are arising. Finally, either the EU will be reformed or be destroyed.

    There is a really simple answer to the Dems if they want to meddle with the basic constitutional structure.

    NO!

    Regards,

    Jim

    • #9
    • October 8, 2018, at 12:20 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  10. Judge Mental Member

    James Gawron (View Comment):

    The tremendous foresight of the Constitution/Federalist Papers becomes evident in exactly the distribution of Senators between big and small states. Without it, the big states would completely dominate so as to swallow the smaller states whole. Giving the smaller states a chance to form a coalition around their joint interests against the larger states interests, allows an equilibrium of power that enforces mutual coexistence and ensures the stability of the country as a whole.

     

    In other words, the left’s reason for objecting to these institutions is exactly why they were created as they were in the first place.

    • #10
    • October 8, 2018, at 12:34 PM PDT
    • 18 likes
  11. danok1 Member

    James Gawron (View Comment):
    The tremendous foresight of the Constitution/Federalist Papers becomes evident in exactly the distribution of Senators between big and small states.

    Especially when one considers Article V. I am not a lawyer, but a plain reading seems to indicate that any change to the Senate, including abolishing it, would have to be unanimous:

    …and that no state, without its consent, shall be deprived of its equal suffrage in the Senate.

    I think that’s why the left is pushing this:

    Judge Mental (View Comment):
    The counter strategy would be to start splitting those big square states into pieces. Create 40-50 new states that are of the same size as the ones on the northeast.

    This would not be a easy as it seems, since it would take the consent of the the states being broken up as well as that of the Congress. All the more reason to make sure the Republicans remain in the majority in each house.

    • #11
    • October 8, 2018, at 12:39 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  12. danok1 Member

    James Gawron (View Comment):

    There is a really simple answer to the Dems if they want to meddle with the basic constitutional structure.

    NO!

    Regards,

    Jim

    Preach, brother James!!

    • #12
    • October 8, 2018, at 12:39 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  13. Nanda Panjandrum Inactive

    To borrow a phrase: “Oy vey!”, EJ.

    • #13
    • October 8, 2018, at 12:40 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  14. Judge Mental Member

    danok1 (View Comment):

    James Gawron (View Comment):
    The tremendous foresight of the Constitution/Federalist Papers becomes evident in exactly the distribution of Senators between big and small states.

    Especially when one considers Article V. I am not a lawyer, but a plain reading seems to indicate that any change to the Senate, including abolishing it, would have to be unanimous:

    …and that no state, without its consent, shall be deprived of its equal suffrage in the Senate.

    I think that’s why the left is pushing this:

    Judge Mental (View Comment):
    The counter strategy would be to start splitting those big square states into pieces. Create 40-50 new states that are of the same size as the ones on the northeast.

    This would not be a easy as it seems, since it would take the consent of the the states being broken up as well as that of the Congress. All the more reason to make sure the Republicans remain in the majority in each house.

    But the names alone would make it worth doing. East North Dakota,West North Dakota, East South Dakota,West South Dakota… 

    • #14
    • October 8, 2018, at 12:44 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  15. DrewInWisconsin, Ham-Fisted Bu… Coolidge

    EJHill (View Comment):

    Jim McConnell: Were you reading from a secret Democrat position paper?

    Twitter. Most tyrants are impressed with their own intellect. They will happily write down their plans and share them, believing that their common sense and genius will persuade you to make it so.

    Here you go. Start with this stupid comment from an alleged “journalist” at NBC (highlighting a piece at the Washington Post by another alleged “journalist”), and follow the comments.

    It’s always astonishing to learn that our journalist class is so mind-numbingly ignorant of how and why our country is organized as it is.

    • #15
    • October 8, 2018, at 1:01 PM PDT
    • 11 likes
  16. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    10 smallest states by population, and the party of their Senators:

    Wyoming: 2R

    Vermont : 1D 1I

    Alaska: 2R

    North Dakota 1D 1R

    South Dakota 2R

    Delaware: 2D

    Montana 1D 1R

    Rhode Island 2D

    Maine 1R 1I

    New Hampshire 2D

     

    Totals: 9R 9D 2I

    What’s the problem?

    • #16
    • October 8, 2018, at 1:43 PM PDT
    • 15 likes
  17. DrewInWisconsin, Ham-Fisted Bu… Coolidge

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    10 smallest states by population, and the party of their Senators:

    Wyoming: 2R

    Vermont : 1D 1I

    Alaska: 2R

    North Dakota 1D 1R

    South Dakota 2R

    Delaware: 2D

    Montana 1D 1R

    Rhode Island 2D

    Maine 1R 1I

    New Hampshire 2D

     

    Totals: 9R 9D 2I

    What’s the problem?

    Their problem is that it’s not 20 D.

    • #17
    • October 8, 2018, at 1:44 PM PDT
    • 17 likes
  18. DrewInWisconsin, Ham-Fisted Bu… Coolidge

    Basically, when Democrats lose, they want to change the rules. Electoral College, organization of the Senate, The Presidency, whatever it is, whenever they lose, they want to change the rules.

    If they win, the rules are fine as they are and “elections have consequences.” But if they lose, then they throw little tantrums like three year olds screaming “It’s not fair!” (where “fair” means “we win everything!”)

    • #18
    • October 8, 2018, at 1:46 PM PDT
    • 19 likes
  19. Blondie Thatcher

    What do we expect when no one teaches civics anymore. My 15 year old niece is teaching all her friends about these things because she’s had to listen to her mother, aunt and grandparents all her life. Oh, and she loves to read. She is in the minority.

    • #19
    • October 8, 2018, at 1:52 PM PDT
    • 14 likes
  20. Nanda Panjandrum Inactive

    Blondie (View Comment):

    What do we expect when no one teaches civics anymore. My 15 year old niece is teaching all her friends about these things because she’s had to listen to her mother, aunt and grandparents all her life. Oh, and she loves to read. She is in the minority.

    Maybe not, Blondie…I’ve got a least 8 here (nieces and nephews) who do; and at least 3 of those have kids who’re being encouraged to read/learn/think. Keep the faith! 

    • #20
    • October 8, 2018, at 1:57 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  21. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    @drewinwisconsin 

    It’s the Kobyashi Maru.

    If one is not a fan of the original Star Trek franchise, it is a minor theme in the second motion picture. The movie opens with the last major training excercise for Academy students. The Kobyashi Maru is a Federation flagged commercial vessel stranded in the Neutral Zone between the Federation and the Klingon Empire. One either has to violate the Zone or abandon the crew to certain death. There is not supposed to be a correct solution, it’s just a test of character.

    The story line comes full circle later in the picture.

    McCOY: Lieutenant, you are looking at the only Starfleet cadet who ever beat the no-win scenario.
    SAAVIK: How?
    KIRK: I reprogrammed the simulation so it was possible to rescue the ship.
    SAAVIK: What?
    DAVID: He cheated!
    KIRK: I changed the conditions of the test. I got a commendation for original thinking. …I don’t like to lose.

    Changing the conditions is their top priority.

    • #21
    • October 8, 2018, at 2:04 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  22. OmegaPaladin Moderator

    Do they realize that getting rid of federalism will ensure violent civil war?

     

    • #22
    • October 8, 2018, at 2:13 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  23. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member

    I thought the 17th Amendment already neutered both the US Senate and all of the several states, laying the groundwork for those states to sidle up to the Federal trough…further paving the way for Representatives to ensure immortality for the Federal Programs that insure their perpetual reelection.

    • #23
    • October 8, 2018, at 2:21 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  24. Jager Coolidge
    Jager Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    DrewInWisconsin (View Comment):

    EJHill (View Comment):

    Jim McConnell: Were you reading from a secret Democrat position paper?

    Twitter. Most tyrants are impressed with their own intellect. They will happily write down their plans and share them, believing that their common sense and genius will persuade you to make it so.

    Here you go. Start with this stupid comment from an alleged “journalist” at NBC (highlighting a piece at the Washington Post by another alleged “journalist”), and follow the comments.

    It’s always astonishing to learn that our journalist class is so mind-numbingly ignorant of how and why our country is organized as it is.

    I remember when Obama was President but the Dems no longer had 60 votes in the Senate. There were serious journalists talking about the need to get rid of the legislative filibuster. That a minority of Senators should not be able to stop a majority. For some reason they don’t really seem to believe that any more.

     

    • #24
    • October 8, 2018, at 2:24 PM PDT
    • 12 likes
  25. Ontheleftcoast Member

    DrewInWisconsin (View Comment):

    Basically, when Democrats lose, they want to change the rules. Electoral College, organization of the Senate, The Presidency, whatever it is, whenever they lose, they want to change the rules.

    If they win, the rules are fine as they are and “elections have consequences.” But if they lose, then they throw little tantrums like three year olds screaming “It’s not fair!” (where “fair” means “we win everything!”)

    See under “majority vote for cloture.”

    • #25
    • October 8, 2018, at 2:55 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  26. Roberto, Crusty Old Timer LLC Member
    Roberto, Crusty Old Timer LLC Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    DrewInWisconsin (View Comment):
    It’s always astonishing to learn that our journalist class is so mind-numbingly ignorant of how and why our country is organized as it is.

    Ignorance born of indifference. They do not care why. They do not like it, it’s in their way. That is all that matters. 

    • #26
    • October 8, 2018, at 3:01 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  27. Ray Gunner Coolidge

    You would think that with a Republican President, Republican majorities in the House and Senate, majority Republican governors and state legislatures, and a 5-4 originalist Supreme Court, our deep blue friends in California, New York, and Massachusetts would be running toward federalism, and the opportunity to build their very own perfect leftist States in an otherwise benighted Union. But they aren’t. “Abolish the Senate! Abolish the Electoral College! Proportional representation! Pack the Courts!”

    One of the most obnoxious characteristics of leftists is their lust for totalism. It is not enough for them that California, New York, and Massachusetts go full leftist. They can’t rest until Texas, Idaho, and Alabama are broken to the leftist saddle as well. 

     

    • #27
    • October 8, 2018, at 4:47 PM PDT
    • 12 likes
  28. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Ray Gunner: They can’t rest until Texas, Idaho, and Alabama are broken to the leftist saddle as well. 

    Federalism means alternatives. Having alternatives are not fair. Some will be able to take advantage of freedom while others won’t. It’s not about increasing the happiness, it’s about the equal distribution of misery.

    • #28
    • October 8, 2018, at 4:57 PM PDT
    • 20 likes
  29. The Reticulator Member

    OmegaPaladin (View Comment):

    Do they realize that getting rid of federalism will ensure violent civil war?

     

    They would like nothing better than to open up the federal guns on conservative resistors.

    • #29
    • October 8, 2018, at 5:14 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  30. The Reticulator Member

    Ray Gunner (View Comment):
    You would think that with a Republican President, Republican majorities in the House and Senate, majority Republican governors and state legislatures, and a 5-4 originalist Supreme Court, our deep blue friends in California, New York, and Massachusetts would be running toward federalism, and the opportunity to build their very own perfect leftist States in an otherwise benighted Union.

    In a way the leftwingers are doing just that, but the anti-Federalist Republicans are stopping them. I’m thinking of sanctuary laws, GMO labeling laws, fracking laws, and (coming soon) occupational licensing.

    • #30
    • October 8, 2018, at 5:16 PM PDT
    • 2 likes

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