Sunday, February 18, 2007

Oh Crap.

I hadn't even thought of this (via Instapundit):

If Hillary Rodham Clinton wins the presidency, some top Democrats would like to see her husband, former President Bill Clinton, appointed to serve out Hillary’s unexpired Senate term.
Isn't that one of the seven signs of the apocalpyse? From what I understand about the issue, it's a little hazy—but I think it's a definite possibility.

In all seriousness, I think Instapundit's question, "does a "twofer" argument help or hurt Hillary?" is the right one. For me, it definitely hurts her (as if that were possible). I am quite concerned about having spouses serve as President and Senator at the same time. Setting aside the potential divided loyalties that could arise (would a President Hillary be able to make the right decision for the country if it also means embarassing a certain junior Senator from New York?), the question raises serious issues for the separation of powers.

Our Constitution at its heart rests on divisions between the three branches of government (and subordinately between the two houses of Congress). While it is not rational to say that having a married couple serve in two branches at once eliminates the division between the two, I certainly have issues with the idea.

Anyone else have thoughts?


Dave said...

Wouldn't similar, perhaps even more signifigant issues exist with, say a President's brother being the Governor of a large state?

I certainly have no particular desire to see a Senator Bill Clinton, and I would honestly be surprised if he wanted the job, but generally speaking we haven't considered being in the same family to be a conflict of interest.

Certainly if we have been quiet about W and Jeb being a possible conflict of interest, it raises questions about our sincerity if we start worrying about President Hillary and Senator Bill.

Wyatt Earp said...

I heard this argument come up before with Slick Willy being appointed Secretary General of the U.N. Scary.

Dave - I don't think the Guv conundrum is the same, since senators have more (at least, perceived) power.

The Man said...

Did I need another reason to not vote for Hillary? Nope.

RFTR said...

I think Wyatt's right. Also, I think that the inherent interaction between the executive and legislative branches at the federal level create a much bigger connundrum than the limited interaction between executive branches at the state and federal level.

Dave said...

I think that Governor's have considerably more power then any single Senator.

I also think that you are greatly underestimating the amount of Federal and State interaction. For example, when a hurricane goes through Florida or Disneyworld wants more funds to protect against terror the Federal Government is right there, typically with the executive branches at both levels doing the co-ordination.

A President can do very little to advance the cause of any single Senator (and vice-versa) but can make a huge difference to a Governor.

I respectfully submit that if it were a Republican President and a closely related senator and a Democratic President and a closely related governor you might think differently on this.

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