Let’s shine light in those dark crooked corners of yours

Dear President Trump,

Are you on your way back to D.C. all snug and dry in your warm, cozy Air Force 1 recliner? You’ve made it clear that you love your creature comforts, but it’s incredible that they are more important than showing up to honor the US and Allied Forces’ war dead. Can you imagine how your base would have blasted President Obama if he’d pulled the “oh, it’s raining and cold, I’m going to take a pass and stay in and watch TV” shit that you did yesterday? We can’t fricking count on you to step up for anything, can we?

Looking ahead to January, there’s been a fair amount of talk about what the Democrats should do with their House majority. Some argue it would be a disaster for them to go right into investigating you and your administration and instead they should try to rack up some legislative progress on issues of importance to the American people that have a prayer of bipartisan support, like infrastructure, for example. Those pushing this path think it would be good to show that Democrats are looking out for the people and aren’t just against you. They also don’t think the Democrats would be able to mount effective investigations right out of the gate.

This morning I read a compelling piece by Alex Pareene (WP) that takes the opposite stance. He notes there’s zero chance of the House Democrats passing any legislation with the GOP in charge of the Senate and you in the White House. Therefore, he argues, Democrats should exercise their Constitutional mandate of providing an effective check on the Executive branch. He makes the point that power goes back and forth pretty darn predictably and so when one party has power, it needs to exercise it wisely while being realistic about its limits. The GOP has done this well with their laser focus on getting as many young conservative judges appointed as they can; they know they won’t be in power forever but they’ll have established a bulwark of conservatism they can point to for years to come.

Should the Democrats focus on investigating you, they won’t have a concrete legacy of legislation or judges to show for it. However, they could very well save the world from the catastrophe of a Trump second term and it’s hard to think of anything more important than that.

May we choose our path wisely, focusing on the world’s safety.
May we be willing to accept what is and isn’t possible.
May we insist our leaders lead with integrity.
May we make peace with the need to shine light in dark crooked corners.

Tracy Simpson

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