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Dr. Caroline Heldman @carolineheldman
, 14 tweets, 4 min read Read on Twitter
We’re in uncharted territory with the federal government routinely passing sweeping laws that a majority of Americans oppose (e.g., gutting the ACA, the GOP tax plan, Trump’s family separation policy, repeal of DACA protections, etc.) 1/
This tyranny of the minority is the result of the Electoral College (that overcounts votes from small states and undercounts votes from large states), as well as decades of strategic GOP gerrymandering that has produced a misrepresentative Congress.… 2/
Our framers established a democratic republic that, in theory, protects against tyranny of the majority by enabling a multitude of competing interests to duke it out.… 3/
Our framers did not envision a minority faction gaining control of the 3 branches and working together to enact policies that a majority of Americans oppose. This poses a serious threat to the fundamental democratic principle of popular sovereignty. 4/
Popular sovereignty is the idea that government derives its authority from the consent of the governed. Popular sovereignty requires majority rule. Absolute and sustained minority rule means the government lacks authority, and, ultimately, legitimacy.… 5/
So how will the majority respond to the tyranny of a minority faction? So far, they have taken to the streets:… 6/
Run for public office in record numbers:… 7/
Turned out to vote in higher numbers:… 8/
And used social media to exercise their consumer power:… 9/
Recently, the majority has been “uncivil,” much to the dismay of some who have grown accustomed to the double standard of treating the egregiously crass behavior of Trump and his minority faction as “normal.”… 10/
As the brilliant @michelleinbklyn points out, the utter dehumanization of Trump ripping kids from parents has pushed the frazzled majority to a tipping point. This is a crisis of democracy that is testing the very legitimacy of our government.… 11/
We arrived here courtesy of partisan gerrymandering and the racist bias built into the Electoral College. But we’re staying here because the GOP stole a Supreme Court seat that anti-democratically tipped the balance of one branch.… 12/
And we’re staying here because the gerrymandered congress has failed to exercise its impeachment duty to check a president that has violated the Constitution (emoluments clause, perfidy, obstruction of justice, etc.).… 13/
In sum, we are in a serious democratic crisis because tyranny of the minority undermines popular sovereignty. If the GOP/midterms fail to provide democratic relief, I fear that incivility is a middle rather than late stage of the majority reclaiming its democracy. 14/14
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