It is the ritual of every 4 years. The whole world stops to debate the U.S. presidential election. Most pundits focus on the low likeability of the Republican and Democratic candidates. The media focuses as usual on what the Republican candidate said instead of on what the Democratic candidate did. Many people with conservative and libertarian leanings are considering voting for the libertarian party candidate out of disagreement with the big government leanings and the personal style of the Republican candidate Donald Trump. Many on the left are dissatisfied that the socialist Bernie Sanders lost the primaries and are considering voting for Trump, 3rd party or even staying home.
It is important to step back and realize the reason for all this drama, the power of the president has grown significantly since the beginning of the 20th century. The constitution didn’t grant any new powers to the president since ratification in 1789 but the president powers started to grow with the growth of the regulatory state in the 20th century. Congress has consistently transferred law making powers to agencies under the executive branch and our economy and liberties have suffered since then. Members of congress have the incentive to transfer the actual work of creating laws to regulatory agencies so they can spend more time fundraising and give speeches to supporters. Congress doesn’t have the power to transfer its powers to the executive branch but the judiciary has allowed such unconstitutional transfer of power.
I think that a state initiated article 5 convention to pass constitutional amendments such as the ones in the Texas Plan is the only remedy to the current abuse of powers happening in Washington. On the short term, though, the states and the people should resist the federal government’s power grab and challenge these transgressions in courts. Companies should challenge federal regulations in courts and litigate any regulatory penalties in courts all the way to the supreme court. Individuals should stand up against any violation of their civil and property rights and litigate them all the way up the courts to the supreme court. I realize that many judges are acting like legislators and decide constitutional challenges based on personal political leanings but using the courts raise awareness of the issues and may cause more citizens to be involved and vote better people into office.
Back to the elections, You will never find a candidate who agrees with you 100% and whether you vote or not someone will fill every office on the ballot so it is better that you help the candidate that will cause the least harm to your rights, property, and family instead of skipping the vote and letting others select for you. Hillary Clinton is running on a platform of military intervention, income redistribution, and group identity politics so no liberty-loving person would seriously consider her. The choice then is between Donald Trump who is a flawed candidate but has good positions on foreign intervention, taxes and regulations, and Gary Johnson who has many good positions but lacks the name recognition to have a shot. If the vote is purely based on political principle I would vote for Gary Johnson but given the amount of damage Hillary Clinton will do to our liberties on top of what Obama did, I think that supporting Donald Trump is the best course of action.
It is important to stress that voting for or supporting a candidate doesn’t mean that you agree with 100% of the candidate’s policies or that you have to defend that candidate against all attacks. I plan to be a critic of everyone in power regardless of party if he or she abused power.