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Democrat leadership is undemocratic

By Henry Lamb
web posted June 16, 2008

When George Bush won the presidency despite Al Gore's half-million popular vote margin, the Democrats cried foul, and vowed to get rid of the Electoral College.  But it's perfectly alright for Obama to get the nomination, despite Hillary's winning more popular votes. The presidential election is governed by the Constitution-enabled Electoral College; the Democrat Party is governed by its own rules.

 The rule that allowed Obama to win, the rule that created nearly 800 "super-delegates," was designed to protect the elite in the party from the democratic process.  These super-delegates do not vote to reflect the will of the people in their district, as do the delegates to the Electoral College.  These Democrat super-delegates vote for their choice, to be absolutely certain that the peons in the party do not make the wrong choice.

What's democratic about this Democrat rule?

A "stunning" example of the arrogance of Democrat leadership, as described by Democrat Harold Ickes, is the theft of delegates from Hillary to arbitrarily assign to Obama.  Hillary won 73 delegates in Michigan; Obama won none.  "Uncommitted" won 45 delegates.  Rather than let these 45 delegates go to the convention to vote as they wish – as do the super-delegates – the Democrat leadership decided to take four delegates away from Hillary, and award 59 delegates to Obama, who had voluntarily removed his name from the ballot.

What's democratic about this Democrat rule?

This callous disrespect for the sacred vote of the people is not limited to primary elections.  It is an attitude that permeates the Democrat leadership.  Both Harry Reid, Senate Majority Leader, and Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House,  are masters at ignoring the will of the people in their manipulation of the congressional process.  The people have elected Republicans to the Congress; their will should be heard, debated, and considered in every vote.  Routinely, the Democrat leadership prohibits Republican amendments, limits debate, and manipulates the outcome of legislation.

To be fair, Republicans are not much better on this score. They too, have a history of manipulating the outcome of legislation.  But, at least Republicans allow their primary voters to elect the candidate the people choose, without a rule that protects the power of the elite to make the final choice.

Failure to listen to, and reflect the will of the people is a far more serious flaw than is normally acknowledged. It is not a flaw in the system; it is a flaw in the character of the people who manipulate the system.

The American system of government is unique in that the Constitution provides the mechanism to insure that it is the people who hold the ultimate power to limit the power of government. This is the principle that has made the American system produce the world's greatest economy and the world's greatest military power.  Both of these results are in great jeopardy because flawed politicians ignore the will of the people in order to impose their own self-proclaimed wisdom.

As flawed politicians hone their skills at manipulating the system and at ignoring the will of the people, the nation suffers – as do all the people whose will is ignored. 

The price of gasoline is a great example.  For more than a decade, the self-proclaimed wisdom of the Democrat leadership has consistently ignored the will of the people to expand the supply of domestic oil.  Consequently, the U.S. reliance on foreign energy has increased – as has the price of gasoline. 

From a broader perspective, the self-proclaimed wisdom of Democrat leadership has manipulated a regulatory hangman's noose around many industries that have found it far more profitable to move their operations to other countries – transforming the job base and manufacturing output of the entire nation. 

The undemocratic Democrat leadership accepts no responsibility for this dilemma.  Instead, they condemn the companies that move away.  Rather than reduce or eliminate the bureaucratic, regulatory obstacle course that discourages entrepreneurial expansion, they devise more tax obstacles to free-enterprise and individual initiative.

Under a heavy dose of this undemocratic leadership – regardless of which party may be in office – this nation has moved steadily toward the social democracies of Europe, where the will of the people is routinely ignored in favor of the self-proclaimed wisdom of the ruling party.

There's little hope to reverse this trend,  by either candidate for the presidency.  There is hope, however, as long as the people continue to elect their Congressmen.  The problem is finding candidates who do not suffer from the same character flaws as those demonstrated by the current leadership.  Find them we must; elect them we must.  The inevitable alternative is continuation of the downward spiral into a socialist system administered by the self-proclaimed, self-appointed undemocratic elite leadership. ESR

Henry Lamb is the executive vice president of the Environmental Conservation Organization (ECO), and chairman of Sovereignty International.

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