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Tag Archives: democratic system

Lanhee Chen: The Long-Running Russia Disinformation Campaign

Tax Reform

This past week, executives from Facebook, Twitter, and Google testified before Congress about Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

For well over a decade, the Russians have spread disinformation and sought to influence the outcome of elections throughout Europe and elsewhere.

The obvious question is, “Why hasn’t more been done to respond to this threat?” Although multiple administrations bear the blame for this failure, it was the Obama administration that, for years, consistently underestimated the threat from Russia.

For example, Politico reported that, in 2014, President Obama’s national security team received reports warning about Russia’s capacity, history, and interest in disrupting political systems in Europe. It should have been clear that those capabilities could be used to attack the United States. But nothing was done.

Russian efforts to undermine American democracy did not end with the 2016 election. Put simply, this is one of the reasons why they continue to represent a serious threat to our national security. Now is the time to act quickly and decisively to ensure the integrity of our democratic system.

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David Davenport: A Silver Lining In the Cloud of Controversy

Compromise

President Trump’s approval numbers are low and controversies are high, nevertheless some good things are happening in our democratic system.

Congress, for example, is stepping up to its responsibilities to debate and decide policy. With Trump less interested in policy particulars, Congress can become what the founders intended, the first of the branches of government. They are debating health care, tax reform and war powers instead of waiting for the president.

Federalism is also flourishing, with states and cities becoming more proactive in policy affairs. I don’t always agree with them, but California and other states have figured out that they can make decisions about immigration or the environment. Again, that’s how the republic is supposed to work.

There’s even a new appreciation for checks and balances and separations of power as the Constitution established them.

Call them unintended good consequences of Donald Trump’s presidency, perhaps, but these are healthy signs for our democratic system.

 

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