Saturday, November 19, 2016

Forget what Hamilton cast said about Pence. Listen to what Hamilton himself said about Trump

Billboard in Montenegro
Donald Trump took to twitter recently to whine about a Hamilton audience booing his presumptive VP, Mike Pence, and some subsequent advice to him from the stage. Pence supports the use of conversion shock "therapy" to alter the sexual orientation of gays, including, we assume, those who tread the boards of Broadway theatres.
     Trump should worry more about the pithy warning from the grave that Alexander Hamilton has for New Yorkers about people like himself. Via Federalist Paper #68:
These most deadly adversaries of republican government might naturally have been expected to make their approaches from more than one querter, but chiefly from the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils. How could they better gratify this, than by raising a creature of their own to the chief magistracy of the Union?
     The quotation is in defense of the electoral system, of course, but only as a better alternative to election of the president by Congress. Hamilton thought an ad hoc body responsible for electing the president would be less subject to untoward pressure than office-holding representatives.
Obviously, an even better means to that end would be direct popular election of the president and the abolishment of  the electoral college or simply short circuiting it via the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact that ten states have already signed on to.

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