Letter to the editor: Fix Congress

To the editor:

A recent letter to the editor raised some pertinent questions regarding the popularity of Presidents Biden and Trump as expressed in polls. The writer went on to accuse Biden of “violating the Constitution’s separation of powers by using governmental agencies to usurp Congress’ responsibility to legislate.” Indeed there has been a significant increase in the use of presidential executive orders, beginning with FDR. In the face of two major crises, he often did not — many would say could not — wait for congressional action. This practice has continued under every president since. It is noteworthy that all but George W. Bush and Obama issued more executive orders than Biden has. Trump issued an average of 55 orders per year compared with Biden’s 44 per year.

Now, is this an indictment of presidential overreach or of congressional failure to act, or both?

Certainly extreme partisanship, the loss of willingness for compromise, loss of rational and collegial discourse have made our Congress ineffective. Regardless of who is in the White House, Congress needs to be fixed. We need to elect senators and representatives who can work across the aisle, who are not totally subservient to their party bosses, who see service to their country as more important than personal ambition, who can conceive national challenges in more than partisan political terms. Changes in Congress must start with us, the citizens, by expressing our opinions to elected officials and candidates, by supporting good candidates, and with our votes.

Joe Douglas,



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