from Mona Charen at National Review, What Are the Checks and Balances:

The Founders included the Electoral College in the Constitution to guard against demagogues, or in Alexander Hamilton’s words, men with “talents for low intrigue, and the little arts of popularity” but lacking the requisite “ability and virtue.” The Electoral College, as originally envisioned, is a dead letter today. So much for that guardrail.

Is the press a check on abuse of power? Will it cover a Hillary Clinton presidency the way it covered Bill Clinton’s (aggressively) or the way it covered Obama’s (pusillanimously)? I’d guess the former, but who knows? Also, the press is held in such low regard by the public that it may not even qualify as a guardrail.


The best that may come out of this election would be a reflection on how we got here and an examination of these guardrails. One guardrail was an elite that understood their fellow citizens, their values and their virtues.  Now they hold the common brethren in contempt and this is guiding the reckless populism. Ultimately the voters are accountable but their choices have been severely limited by a dysfunctional nominating system.