After a bitterly fought election that millions believe (with plenty of justification) was stolen, Joe Biden, who has promised to be a uniter who will heal this country, has every reason to follow through on that promise.
I’ve never believed that uniting this country was ever a goal of Joe Biden. But it’s obvious to anyone that a sincere effort to do so would go a long way.
Nothing short of a meaningful audit of the results will change the minds of those who have seen the evidence (which is backed up by statistical analyses, video evidence, and sworn affidavits) but if Biden doesn’t want to make things worse, here’s what he can do.
1. Throw cold water on the impeachment nonsense
Several Democrats have floated a second impeachment of Trump over false allegations that he incited an insurrection. The allegations are absurd, just as allegations regarding his phone call with the Ukraine president showed a quid pro quo were absurd. But Democrats have been obsessing about removing Trump from office since before he even took the oath. It’s an unhealthy obsession that has ripped this nation apart over the past four years.
When asked about his thoughts on impeachment on Friday, Biden avoided answering and said, “What the Congress decides to do is for them to decide.”
Democrats have already dangerously abused the power of impeachment, turning it into a political tool. A second, meaningless impeachment will open the floodgates even wider.
Another bogus impeachment will tear this country apart. Biden should go on the record in opposition to impeachment or any of this 25th-Amendment nonsense. To do anything less would make him an accessory. After all, last year he claimed, “I am the Democratic Party right now,” which means that he can shut down this dumb, divisive idea before it happens.
2. Pledge no new states
Democrats have floated all sorts of ideas to help increase their majorities in the U.S. Senate. Statehood for Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico are among those ideas. With each new state would come two U.S. senators.
Congress does not have the power to grant statehood to Washington, D.C. (a constitutional amendment would be required), but Puerto Rico is arguably fair game in this blatant power grab. The debate over statehood for Puerto Rico would be brutally divisive. Joe Biden should pledge immediately that he will not approve admitting states into the union to cater to his party’s power grab.
3. Pledge not to pack the courts
Biden resisted giving an answer to the question of court-packing before the election, though Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said everything “is on the table” following the nomination and confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. While it’s obvious that Biden didn’t want to declare support for court-packing while nearly two-thirds of Americans oppose it, for him to go against the overwhelming sentiment of the people would be bad politics in the long run.
Perhaps the worst side-effect of such a move would be that it would cause a chain reaction of one-party governments to repeatedly increase the size of the Supreme Court to achieve the ideological majority that suits them. We’ve experienced one-party government many times in my lifetime alone, but court-packing didn’t happen. If Joe Biden lets it happen, it will open Pandora’s box.
4. Don’t legislate via executive order
Speaking of Pandora’s box, Barack Obama’s govern-by-executive-fiat is something Biden should pledge not to repeat. Sure, he has both Houses of Congress on his side right now, but with slim majorities. Even Obamacare required a lot of backroom deals to get passed. So Biden should pledge not to do what Obama did.
Similarly, he should send the Iran nuclear deal and the Paris climate accords to the Senate for ratification. If Republicans have gained anything resembling a spine over the past four years (and that is debatable) reinstituting these treaties unconstitutionally will set up legal battles. And, frankly, considering how Trump transformed the judiciary in four years, those challenges would likely not turn out in Biden’s favor.
5. A bipartisan cabinet
This one is actually fairly simple. Biden exploited his support from anti-Trump Republicans during the campaign. They may only be moderately conservative, but nominating a select few for key posts in his administration, including his cabinet, would be ideal. Trump supporters won’t necessarily be happy with a Never Trump Republican, but many of us would acknowledge that even a moderate anti-Trump Republican would be better than an administration composed entirely of leftists.
Matt Margolis is the author of Airborne: How The Liberal Media Weaponized The Coronavirus Against Donald Trump and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis