Progressive Reform

Presidents In Conflict With The Judiciary Are Nothing New Historically, But Trump Could Be The Biggest Threat Yet To Our Constitutional System

The conflict of President Donald Trump with the judiciary is not the first time there has been a challenge from a President to the judicial branch.

Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson had regular conflict with Chief Justice John Marshall and the federal courts in the first third of the 19th century.

Abraham Lincoln had vehement disagreements with Chief Justice Roger Taney in the era of the Civil War.

Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson both found the Supreme Court as standing in the way of progressive reform in the early 20th century.

Franklin D. Roosevelt was so frustrated by a conservative Supreme Court negating important legislation of the New Deal in the mid 1930s, that he proposed the idea of adding six new Justices to the Court in 1937. This came to be known as the “Court Packing” plan, and was soundly defeated, including by members of his own Democratic Party.

Richard Nixon had issues with the rulings of the Earl Warren Court before he was President, and the continued Warren influence on the Court under his successor, Warren Burger. And, Nixon was stopped dead in his tracks in US. V. Nixon in 1974, forcing him to hand over the Watergate Tapes to the Special Prosecutor, Leon Jaworski, leading him to resign the Presidency in August 1974.

Barack Obama was critical of the John Roberts Court on its conservative decisions early on in his Presidency in 2010.

And now, Donald Trump has unleashed what many consider the strongest challenge to the whole federal judiciary, alarming many constitutional experts as far more dangerous and threatening to the checks and balances of the Constitution and the separation of powers.

It is clear that Trump has declared war on the judiciary, but it could be that the Roberts Court will smack back at him when cases regarding his abuse of power make it to the Court, so Trump may be “hoist by hid own petard”, and regret the attacks he has made on the whole court system.

The Republican Party At The End Of 2017: Bereft Of All Principle, Common Decency, And Concern For The American People Who Are Not Wealthy And Privileged

Here we are on Christmas Day, and we would like to have the Christmas spirit far and wide in America.

But we cannot have that spirit, as the governing Republican Party at the end of 2017 is a shell of its old self.

The Republican Party today is not the party of Abraham Lincoln, William Seward, Thaddeus Stevens, and Charles Sumner. It is not the party of civil rights and racial equality.

The Republican Party today is not the party of Theodore Rooevelt, Robert La Follette, Sr., George Norris, and Charles Evans Hughes. It is not the party of progressive reform, of regulation of corporations and promotion of the environment.

The Republican Party today is not the party of Dwight D. Eisenhower, Nelson Rockefeller, William Scranton, and Earl Warren. It is not the party of world leadership and moderate domestic reform.

The Republican Party today is not the party of Gerald Ford, Charles Percy, Mark Hatfield, and Charles Mathias. It is not the party of bipartisan domestic and foreign policy.

Instead, the Republican Party is now the worst elements imaginable, bereft of all principle, common decency, and concern for the American people who are not wealthy and privileged.

It is an evil party, which has committed massive crimes against the American people and the world community.

It is a party which has shown no concern about breaking up families; destroying people’s lives; and consorts with enemies of the American Constitution and democratic values.

It is a party which has set out to destroy all domestic tranquility and foreign stability, all in the lunatic and maniacal craziness to enrich themselves and exploit others.

It is a party which professes religiosity, but ignores the Judeo-Christian tradition of “good works”.

It is a party of hypocrisy and the promotion of lies.

It is a party of disgraceful, selfish, greedy men and women who have declared war on the long held traditions of their party, and their super nationalism, xenophobia, and fascist tendencies endanger all Americans of color, other religions, and women who resist their evil intentions.

It is a party which deserves to go into the dustbin of history!

Hillary Clinton 70 Today, And Theodore Roosevelt Born 159 Years Ago Tomorrow: From One Progressive President To Another “Should Have Been” Progressive President

Today is the 70th birthday of Hillary Clinton, who should have been the 45th President, and the first woman President.

Superbly qualified and experienced, she won a bigger popular vote victory than many Presidents, including recently, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, and Jimmy Carter, along with others.

But the antiquated Electoral College system defeated her, and clearly, Russian collusion had an effect on vote totals in crucial states, and so, therefore, we were denied her right to be President, and instead have a crooked, corrupt President, who has accomplished nothing more than the division of the nation, and an extremely low public opinion poll rating, and faces removal from office soon, giving us right winger Mike Pence as the 46th President.

Tomorrow is the 159th anniversary of the birth of Theodore Roosevelt, a progressive Republican, who one can be assured, would be shocked and dismayed at the Trump Presidency for a multitude of reasons, but with the environment and conservation being probably the most infuriating issue of all for him. Another issue which would have upset him is changing the rule that controls on corporate campaign finance, limited since his time, are gone since the Citizens United Supreme Court case in 2010.

TR was the 26th President, and Hillary Clinton would have been number 45–so would have been the 20th from 1901 to the present.

They would have been great beginnings and ends of a period of growth of a progressive Presidency, with only a few reversals, under Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover in the 1920s and early 1930s, and Ronald Reagan in the 1980s, but with all others, good and bad, bringing SOME Progressive changes, until now with Donald Trump, who is working to undermine all of the changes brought about in the past 116 years of American history.

The Modern Presidency Began Today, September 14, In 1901, With The Coming To Power Of Theodore Roosevelt

As a lifetime student of the American Presidency, September 14, 1901 stands out as the beginning of the modern Presidency.

On that day, 116 years ago, Theodore Roosevelt succeeded from the Vice Presidency, which he had held for about six months, and became the 26th President of the United States, upon the death of President William McKinley from the assassination bullets fired by anarchist Leon Czolgosz eight days earlier, on September 6, in Buffalo, New York.

TR brought a new vision of the Presidency to the White House, an activist, aggressive, broad interpretation of executive powers, and transformed the office for the long term future.

Our youngest President, still 42, TR brought life, excitement, charisma to the Presidency, and made America a respected nation in foreign policy.

He also initiated the idea of Progressive reform, that the national government had a role in moving the nation forward by regulation and legislation, away from the concept of states rights.

There was never a dull moment in TR’s life, either in the Presidency or after, and he became a model for future Presidents of both parties, particularly Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama.

With TR’s accession to the Presidency, the history of the Secret Service protecting the Chief Executive began, and remains a major burden of security to keep the President safe and unharmed.

A reminder that the McKinley Assassination is covered in Chapter 4 of my book, ASSASSINATIONS, THREATS, AND THE AMERICAN PRESIDENCY: FROM ANDREW JACKSON TO BARACK OBAMA (Rowman Littlefield Publishers), now out since March in paperback from the publisher or Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

Also, there is Chapter 5 in the book, which covers the attempted assassination of TR when running as an ex-President on the Progressive (Bull Moose Party) line in 1912, being shot in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on October 14, 1912 by John Flammang Schrank, but surviving his wounds.

Productive Year On History News Network Concludes With 50th Article, All Posted On Right Side Of Blog

The year 2016 has been an amazing year for this author and blogger, in a way one could not imagine when the year began.

I contacted Rick Shenkman of HistoryNewsNetwork.org in January about contributing to his website which gains an average of 800,000 hits per month, and publishes multiple articles on all kinds of historical and current events topics three times per week.

He agreed, and I have been fortunate enough to publish the grand total of 50 articles this year, mostly on the Presidential Election of 2016, but also some on other historical topics, and also some articles related to my Assassinations book, which came out in August 2015, and will be issued in paperback in March 2017.

The most recent article, on reassessing Jimmy Carter after a record 13,000 plus days out of the Presidency, was published on Christmas Day, and is now posted on the right side of this blog with the other articles for easy reading.

I would not expect that I will be as productive in the future, as 2016 was an unusual year, but I plan to continue to contribute articles in this coming year of 2017 and future years, as events require it, and they will be posted on the blog.

All my articles on HNN, plus two reproduced on TIME Magazine’s website, and two TheHill.com articles in late 2015 on my book, are now easily found.

Meanwhile, I continue to write regularly on this blog, and the total is now over 5,450 entries since its inception in August 2008, and I hope to continue to do this for many more years, and wish to thank those readers who have contributed their ideas and thoughts in response to my entries.

If anything, the coming of the Trump Presidency requires more vigilance and watchfulness, so we can promote the progressive cause long term. It will not be an easy struggle, but is required to fight the good fight for one’s principles.

So Happy New Year everyone, and to the health and prosperity of America, and of progressive reform ideas surviving in a difficult era!

The Moment Has Arrived: The Election Of The First Woman President Is Coming In 24 Hours!

The time has finally arrived!

One day from this writing, America will have its first woman President, way behind many other nations, including Great Britain, Germany, Israel, India, Pakistan, and others.

America will have broken the glass ceiling permanently!

America will have demonstrated that it is a true democracy, successively electing an African American President, and a woman President!

Hillary Clinton will be an outstanding President, who will further fulfill the progressive agenda of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama.

But also the progressive tradition of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt as well!

The greatness of America is evident, and it will continue to be the nation that the world admires and respects!

A Hillary Clinton Alliance With Bernie Sanders And Elizabeth Warren For Progressive Change After The Election

There are many progressives who are skeptical about Hillary Clinton’s commitment to progressive reform. They seem willing to allow Donald Trump to be elected, which is suicidal behavior.

That is unacceptable behavior, although it is understandable that Hillary Clinton’s husband, Bill Clinton, was far from a great progressive in his time, and this blogger has well expressed that reality over the years.

Readers of this blog know that the author was and is a Joe Biden fan, which also may not please the most left wing progressives.

But this blogger believes that insisting on purity is the road to disaster, as when progressives found Hubert Humphrey unacceptable in 1968, giving us Richard Nixon; and when progressives found Al Gore unacceptable in 2000, giving us George W. Bush.

For this nation to elect a far left progressive is never going to happen, and the way forward is incremental reform, as the right wing forces are not going away, and have great power and influence.

So there are those who would say Barack Obama was not progressive enough, but imagine if we had ended up with John McCain or Mitt Romney.

This blogger believes that Hillary Clinton will be committed to progressive reform when she is President, and that she will have an alliance with Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, but a lot depends on electing a Democratic Senate and narrowing the Republican control of the House of Representatives.

Finally! Democratic National Committee Provides Support For Tom Barrett In Scott Walker Recall Election In Wisconsin!

It has been a long haul to get the Democratic National Committee to recognize that they must provide funds and ground support to the massive effort to help Mayor Tom Barrett of Milwaukee unseat Governor Scott Walker in the recall election in Wisconsin on June 5.

Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the DNC Chair, announced such support yesterday, a crucial element in the upcoming Presidential election, as if this recall election is lost, it will be a major blow to the Obama re-election campaign.

It is not as if that loss, if it occurs, is a guarantor of trouble in November, but it would be a major setback for progressive forces, as Scott Walker represents the worst of the “Bully Governors” and the Tea Party Movement, which has been the major negative force since the midterm Congressional and state elections of 2010.

The labor movement, the role of education, the effect on women, the role of powerful special interests (including the Koch Brothers), and so many other strands of politics are tied together with the Wisconsin recall race, only the third time there has been a recall election in the history of the United States.

The other two times, in North Dakota in 1921, and in California in 2003, the cause for recall was far less serious than the case is in Wisconsin, but both efforts succeeded.

A victory by Walker would show the power of the wealthy special interests to corrupt our system of government and make life more comfortable for the “one percent” against the “99 percent”, and would set Wisconsin back to before the time of Governor Robert La Follette, Sr., who made “progressivism” a cause that would impact the state and the nation numerous times over the next century.

The battle for progressive reform, and to keep it strong, is a never ending battle, but it is good that the DNC has finally entered the fray!

Illinois: “The Land Of Lincoln” Matters In Primary Race For Republicans For First Time In Years!

Illinois is one of the major electoral vote states, but rarely in recent primary contests has the state mattered, because of its late date for the primary for President.

But this time, it matters as Mitt Romney SHOULD win this state, and has spent a ton of money to defeat Rick Santorum, and yet Santorum just might win this primary next Tuesday, even without any large amount of money spent on the campaign.

It is obvious that money does not alone win elections, and if one does not believe that is true, ask Meg Whitman and Carly Fiorina, who spent many millions, and yet were not elected Governor and Senator from California in 2010!

But as this race between Romney and Santorum heats up, one has to reflect on what Abraham Lincoln, the first Republican President, would be thinking if he were here today and seeing what has become of his party, one that once had principles, fought against slavery and slavery expansion, promoted black equality, cared about labor and farmers, and promoted progressive reforms under such leaders as Theodore Roosevelt and Robert La Follette, Sr and George Norris in the first decades of the 20th century.

Lincoln would wring his hands, hold his head with a pained look on his face, and if he were here today, he would vote for Barack Obama, proud of how far we had come in the 150 years since the Civil War!

In other words, Abraham Lincoln would be a DEMOCRAT, as would Theodore Roosevelt, Robert La Follette, Sr. and George Norris!