Free at Last? (No.)

by Al Timke
November 25, 2020

Let me be clear, I am deleriously happy to get Trump out of the White House! Although I am not at all enthused over Joe Biden, what he can do with existing presidential powers will provide the country with enormous relief. Of course the bar has been set incredibly low. He just has to act like he has a faint glimmer of decency and a modicum of intelligence. Our troubles are nowhere near an end, though.

The Dems have a razor-thin majority in the House (Thank you DNC!), so even doomed, “make-a-statement” bills may be a challenge to pass. Much of Biden’s agenda may never see the light of day.

And even if Democrats win both of the Senate seats in Georgia’s January 5 special election, the majority there will also be razor-thin. Of course, if they do win control, at least McConnell will not run the show … directly at least. Unless the Dems get rid of the filibuster rule, he will still have effective veto power over bills and cabinet nominations. If Democrats don’t gain control of the Senate, things will be dark indeed.

We also have a right-wing super-majority in the Supreme Court now that could put a damper on presidential and congressional action. But that may have become less important when the more than 200 McConnell judges in the lower courts were added to conservative judges that were already there. Only a very small percentage of cases ever make it to the Supreme Court.

Last, Trump and Trumpism will still play a role with the Republican Party. But my hope is that when he gets less media attention, and when Fox doesn’t hang on his every word (or feed him all his lines), he will lose interest. Or he may be tied up in criminal and civil court cases that could be an existential threat to him. (One would hope that courts and law enforcement agencies realize that he is a flight risk and have him under constant surveilence.) Regardless, this ain’t gonna be no walk in the park! Maybe by the 2022 election ……. okay, 2024, we will see the light of day!

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