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Catholic University of America Prof Says ‘The Constitution isn’t Working’

Catholic University of America Prof Says ‘The Constitution isn’t Working’

“The document, written in 1787, isn’t working.”

John Kenneth White teaches politics. It doesn’t sound like he likes Republicans very much, which I’m sure will just shock you.

He writes at The Hill:

The Constitution isn’t working

The U.S. Constitution is the sacred text of American government and civic life. But it’s time to face facts: The document, written in 1787, isn’t working. The signs are all around us. Just 38 percent of Americans in a recent Gallup poll expressed either a “great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in the presidency, down from 48 percent in 2001. Congress, never high in the public’s estimation to begin with, fell from 26 percent to a mere 12 percent. The Supreme Court has also taken a hit, down from 50 percent to 36 percent during the same period.

One reason often cited for the failing Constitution are the people who inhabit its carefully crafted institutions. In Congress, serious legislators are scarce, as many members aim for viral recognition on social media. Freshman Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) freely admitted, “I have built my staff around comms [communication], not legislation.” Cawthorn is hardly alone: Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) represent a new breed of legislators who seek recognition and are largely uninterested in passing actual laws.

Disappointing presidents have become the norm. George W. Bush, Barack Obama and Donald Trump failed to bring the country together, with Trump leaving office amplifying spurious claims of election fraud that led to the insurrection on Jan. 6. Although it is early in the Biden presidency, voter disenchantment is already clear, and the unity he promised in his inaugural address seems as elusive as ever. In the 19th century, James Bryce famously remarked that great men do not become presidents. Indeed, great presidents such as George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Franklin D. Roosevelt are the exception, not the rule.


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This professor seems ignorant of the fact that the Founding Fathers drafted the Constitution in reaction to the excesses of King George and the French Revolution and was designed as a constitutional republic and not a pure democracy. The separation of powers between the legislative, judicicial and executive branches as well as the Electoral College and the Senate as a brake on the tyranny of the majority were and are among the best means of governance ever created by mankind.

    Old Soldier in reply to Steven Brizel. | December 30, 2021 at 6:09 pm

    Especially when taken in the context of federal system where political power is divided not just among the three branches of the national government, but between the federal government and the States where power is again diffused among executive, legislative, and judicial branches, and shared to varying degrees with local governments. The marvel of it all is that it works most of the time, the miracle is that transfers of power following elections are peaceful.

The Constitution isn’t working

When interpreted properly it just gets in the way of your dreams of absolute power, doesn’t it?

I agree with the professor’s assessment of the current state of politics.
But I fail to see why he blames tbe Constitution.
The Constitution is the only thing standing between the People snd utter tyranny.

    Wise_Jedi in reply to GL. | December 31, 2021 at 10:43 am

    One of the biggest problems I see (this is just my opinion, so take it for what it’s worth) is that from the start there were never term limits imposed on any elected office below the President of the United States.

    I do not believe our founding fathers ever intended for public office to become a lucrative career where one could garner obscene personal wealth and power. I don’t believe our founding fathers ever intended for our elected officials, bureaucrats, and others who wear government uniforms and titles (SOME police who abuse their authority) to be able to set themselves above the law and accountability to the voters who put them in office.

    I often wonder what our founding fathers would think about the way legislators pass laws for all of us to follow, but carve out exceptions for themselves. I say any law that legislators would exempt themselves from should have never went on the books to begin with and should be nullified and made of no effect.

How utterly and predictably Leftist! He doesn’t get the outcome he wants and therefore it’s the Constitution that is at fault and must be replaced.

Y’all will be shocked to know that I agree with this professor.
Constitutions don’t work because they can’t work.

I consider the foundation of the Constitution as laid on this ground: That “all powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States or to the people.” To take a single step beyond the boundaries thus specifically drawn around the powers of Congress, is to take possession of a boundless field of power, no longer susceptible of any definition.

It is, perhaps, a fact provocative of sour mirth that the Bill of Rights was designed trustfully to prohibit forever two of the favorite crimes of all known governments: the seizure of private property without adequate compensation and the invasion of the citizen’s liberty without justifiable cause…. It is a fact provocative of mirth yet more sour that the execution of these prohibitions was put into the hands of courts, which is to say, into the hands of lawyers, which is to say, into the hands of men specifically educated to discover legal excuses for dishonest, dishonorable and anti-social acts.

To change white to black takes painters or lawyers.

Only a fool expects a fair contest when his opponent controls all the referees.

Professor White teaches politics in the wrong country. He should try Venezuela.