The ad and subsequent speech that support the ad’s message may be part of a game of fantasy politics, but they also reflect the opinions of its creator, ….me,……..Kempite.
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We need a President who will use the power of the veto.
America needs a President who will say no even to good legislation if it brings with it dozens of bad legislative amendments and billions of dollars of pork.
The power of the veto is not something to be taken lightly. It is not something that should be used in any willy-nilly manner. A President must have good reason to overrule the majority vote of the people’s house and require a supermajority to undo such objection. This power is great and, more often than not, the votes required to override presidential vetoes are not often achieved.
Since the time of George Washington to the time of George W. Bush, American presidents have cast a total of 2,562 vetoes. And of that total number, only 110 have been successfully overturned. That is little more than 4% of all the vetoes cast throughout our history.
So clearly, with an almost 96% success rate, President’s have the advantage.
It is that advantage which must not be carelessly abused, but responsibly used.
Zachary Taylor and Millard Fillmore were the last Presidents we ever had that never used their veto. Most recently, President George W. Bush had gone 1,889 days without issuing a single veto. It was more than 5 years before he saw fit to object to any legislation.
During that span of time, President Bush did however approve of and sign in to law 1,091 bills.
I tend to believe that if it were my signature required to turn that many proposals into the laws of the land, I would probably not want to put my John Hancock on all of those 1,091 pieces of legislation. I have a feeling that not all of the bills put before the President were perfect and that some of them contained either concepts or spending that I would have found objectionable. But it wasn’t until George W. Bush’s last few years in office, specifically the two years that Democrats controlled the House of Representatives, that George W. Bush finally objected to something that came across his desk. In the end, he vetoed a grand total of twelve bills and of those twelve, four were overridden.
By contrast, Franklin Roosevelt had much to object to.
Although his numbers are skewed because of his longest in history service as President, he still objected to much that Congress sent him. He vetoed 635 pieces of legislation. And of those, only 9 were successfully overridden.
Somewhere between George W. Bush and FDR probably lies the happy median regarding a President’s use of their veto power.
But I fear that a happy median is probably out of the question for any President who really feels that the games, tricks and abuses of the legislative process have gone too far and are no longer acceptable.
As President, such is the opinion I myself would hold.
With billions of dollars that get past any legitimate scrutiny or debate and the addition of amendments that are not germane and in fact totally irrelevant to the thrust of many proposed bills, the people of United States of America are being shortchanged. When healthcare reform legislation can include a clause that is buried amid a few thousand pages and dedicates hundreds of millions of dollars to a certain state for issues that are entirely unrelated to healthcare, that is bad enough. But when such conduct becomes not the rarity but the norm, then it is time for someone to say enough is enough!
That is why, as President, I will initiate the Kempite Doctrine.
It will be a doctrine that demands all bills contain items, sections, clauses, and amendments that are relevant to main concern that each bill is aimed at addressing. In addition to the existing reforms of the process that I have proposed , I declare here and now that every aspect of every piece of legislation better consist of clauses that are germane to the main thrust of any bill at hand. As President I will not be able to approve measures such as an infrastructure bill that has spending on something so off topic, such as funding for the study of the effects of insomnia on circus animals.
Nor will I pass a defense budgets that includes something like changes in civil law for such things as hate crimes.
Under my Administration, if there is any spending that must be paid for or a law that needs to be written or changed, they will have to be individually approved on the basis of the merit of each individual issue or proposal.
I have no problem with omnibus legislation which contains related initiatives but we can no longer tolerate the shady deals that assemble votes on one issue by including amendments that have nothing to do with the original issue. If something is good enough to be included in any piece of legislation that comes before this American government, than it should be good enough to stand alone and after standing up to healthy scrutiny and debate, be passed on its own merit, not the merit of another bill.
This will most assuredly put me at odds with Congress on many occasions. It will also force me to foster a truly bipartisan presidency. For if it is my Party that holds the majority and if it is my Party presenting a bill that is stuffed with pork and the pet projects of the donors that a lawmaker is trying to slip quietly into a major piece of legislation as a favor, I will be forced to work with the minority party or the opposing Party. I will be forced to maintain a coalition of support that will make it impossible for my veto to be overridden.
I may at times be criticized and attacked for not signing truly good and valuable legislation. But let it be known that I would rather oppose good legislation that is filled with bad amendments, and riders and costly pork than pass bad amendments and riders and wasteful spending that is attached to good legislation.
And for those in Congress who want to challenge me, be forewarned that I will not be intimidated easily. I will use the power of the bully pulpit ,otherwise known as this presidency, to call each and every sponsor of pork or unwarranted amendments out by name. If you try to pollute necessary and productive legislation with political junk, I will veto it. And then I will visit your legislative district and personally tell your voters what you tried to sneak through Congress. I will let them know that you are the roadblock to the passage of that meaningful bill that America clearly needs or those spending reforms crucial to job creation in our nation. If you are a polluter of the process, I will make you famous, or to be more accurate, I will make you infamous.
The games are over.
The political class must begin to recapture the virtues of integrity and honesty. Our American government deserves nothing less than to be viewed as virtuous as opposed to the image of corruption and dishonesty that tarnishes it now more than ever. And if you can not force yourself to act with virtue and integrity, I will force you to. For I will not sign into law any measure that I can not be proud of and that Americans can no longer afford.
Call me Don “Veto” because as of today I will become the Godfather of the presidential veto and if forced, I will use it.