Whatever credibility George Will had left is pretty much shot after a statement he made on one of the Sunday morning political talk shows. I don’t watch the Sunday shows and never have, but I did hear the following sound bite on Monday’s Rush Limbaugh Show and was dumbfounded:
WILL: No. A lot of people sending you e-mails are angry. They’re angry at Mitch McConnell and they’re angry at John Boehner. They should be angry at James Madison. Their problem is we sent all these Republicans to Washington and they still can’t work their will from Congress. The fact is the separation of powers, which is there for a reason and served us well over time, is an impediment to getting things done in Washington. Get over it.
This kind of attitude is rather infuriating because it implies that the Constitution is somehow outdated and no longer relevant. The fact is, the Founders knew best how to construct a system of governance that would best serve a freedom-loving people. The problem isn’t James Madison. James Madison wasn’t perfect, and I would never imply that the Founders were without flaw, but to suggest that the current crop of establishment politicians is somehow wiser and better-equipped to run government that the very ones who founded it is ludicrous.
Separation of powers was built into the Constitution in order to prevent any one branch of the federal government from usurping too much power, which has clearly happened with the executive branch during the current administration. Separation of powers is one of those checks and balances that was constructed specifically as an impediment to “getting things done.” The Washington establishment has come to believe Congress has to be “doing things” in order to be effective, that if Congress isn’t continually passing laws then it’s somehow a detriment to the republic. Yet when Congress is busy “getting things done,” it usually means government is growing and debt is rising. The country and its citizens would no doubt be much better served if the President and Congress would take a nice, long break and not “get things done” for awhile.