Focus on executive power overlooks Congress

The people of America will decide in November who will get the keys to the greatest executive wash room in the country: the presidency. The pageantry and drama of a presidential election is certainly irresistible even to the casual observer.

Modern politics teaches us to think the president has unyielding power to do whatever the will of the people want. But our Constitution teaches us something different: that executive power is actually very limited. It says the president hasn’t the power to declare war, tax the people or even to spend money. This power is solely reserved for the Congress.

As voters, we need to be mindful of the Constitution because it is Congress that will be making or should be making these key decisions after the election. However, a veil of deception will prevail from now until November because the corporations, media, and campaign-spending PACs are all counting on you to focus on the CEO (president) and not the board of directors (Congress) for a simple reason: It’s not profitable to do otherwise.

Bold ideas, hard policy decisions or even basic reforms require inertia coupled with intention. Substantive change in Washington would suggest voters demanding something other than the status quo and that threat is unacceptable to the “bottom liners” because they like the current board, not a new one. Wake me up when November ends.

Jaime McMillan