by Brent Budowsky
Every American should vote on Election Day as though the future of our country, their families and Western democracy — which is now under attack from foreign and domestic sources — depends on it. Which it does.
Lets consider what should happen if Democrats win control of the House, Senate or both in the midterm elections. If the most important midterm elections in American history end the one-party state in Washington controlled by an authoritarian Republican president and Republicans in Congress who march in lockstep with him, the 2020 elections will be one of the most important elections in a century that could result in a Democratic president, House and Senate.
A Democratic victory in 2018 would be a triumph for the checks and balances that our founders envisioned. If this occurs, Democrats must govern in Congress in a manner that wins public support to super-empower a Democratic victory in 2020 in which a large majority of Senate elections will put Republican-held seats at risk, as well as electing the president and House of Representatives.
Democratic leaders of a Democratic Congress should and will treat Republican leaders and members with far more fairness than Republican leaders in the Republican Congress have shown to them.
A Democratic Congress should forcefully back special counsel Robert Mueller and conduct hearings and investigations with integrity and probity that have been abysmally lacking under GOP rule. Democrats should not consider impeachment proceedings until all facts uncovered during the Mueller probe become public information.
Democratic leaders should designate a nationally respected figure such as former New York U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who has earned his reputation of being above partisan politics, as a special adviser.
Democrats should convene landmark hearings, similar to the Fulbright hearings during the Vietnam War. They should seek testimony from high-level officials of the Trump administration to offer their unvarnished views about the dangers they fear Trump may create for the rule of law, national security and democratic institutions.
Regarding the anonymous op-ed in The New York Times authored by a “senior administration official,” the Washington parlor game of trying to identify the writer entirely misses the critical point. Many senior officials in the Trump administration agree with many or all of the ominous warnings in the op-ed, according to Bob Woodward’s book “Fear: Trump in the White House.”
A matter so momentous to our security and democracy should not be discussed through anonymous op-eds and deep background books with unnamed sources. The American people deserve the truth. Senior administration figures have a patriotic duty to provide it. A Democratic Congress in a bipartisan spirit should work to make this happen.
A Democratic Congress should conduct comprehensive hearings to develop and ultimately enact sweeping ethics reforms to end corruption in Washington, and historic health-care legislation similar to “Medicare for all” that should be carefully costed out and championed to voters through the 2020 campaign.
Democrats should devise proposals to repeal the most egregious provisions of GOP tax cuts that provided lavish benefits to the wealthiest citizens, and replace them with tax cuts that lift the lives of Americans who receive little or nothing from the GOP tax cuts.
If Judge Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court after a cover up of documents kept secret from senators, a Democratic Congress should subpoena those documents. I do not charge Judge Kavanaugh with perjury, but he has made statements in confirmation hearings that fall short of the standards of truth that voters deserve, and Democrats should demand, before any judgment about future action is considered.
A conservative Supreme Court majority must not be railroaded through by abusive tactics from Republican leaders who refused to consider the nomination of Judge Merrick Garland, leaving the court with only eight justices for more than a year, and achieved by confirmation of Judge Kavanaugh after expedited and inadequate consideration.
Democratic presidential candidates should consider a plan to add two new Supreme Court seats to unpack the court and then return the Senate to regular order.