Because of the orderly and timely flow of individual newspaper pages for a paper published out of town, this page is “off to bed” well before final election results are in. While most polls predicted Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton would win the election, we’re not so sure.
As Trib columnist Harry Harelik noted Sunday, the fact we haven’t seen many Trump or Clinton signs around town suggests many people — possibly embarrassed by the choices they’ve been given — have kept their sentiments to themselves. They’ve by now revealed them in the sanctity and solitude of the voting booth.
Given that many polls called it wrong when Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump first began the primary election process early this year, there’s every reason to expect he might have pulled off one more upset. Thus, absent election results, this much we should make clear: Whoever has won, each of us must remember the principles upon which this nation was founded — majority will, coupled with respect for minority rights even when they lose. If we awake to find ourselves with, say, a President-elect Trump, all Americans should pledge to help make his presidency a success — a blessing, frankly, not given his predecessor, the nation’s first black president.
Yes, that means Democratic senators, if they find themselves in control of the U.S. Senate, should demonstrate governance, not obstruction. If President Trump nominates, say, a strong conservative to the U.S. Supreme Court, Democrats are obligated to consider the nominee’s credentials and past behavior only, then approve that nominee to the high court. One of those nominees could well be Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett.
And if Trump presses immigration reform, Republicans and Democrats should help make those reforms happen. That doesn’t mean Congress must slavishly allow the president to deport 11.5 million illegal immigrants in our country. But it must commit to helping him meaningfully reform our immigration system. The presence of local pastor Ramiro Peña on Trump’s National Hispanic Advisory Council would bode well, we believe.
But this attitude must also hold if majority will puts Hillary Clinton in the White House. Again, if she proposes a Supreme Court nominee, senators must consider only the credentials and behavior of the nominee, not whether they like his or her ideology. And good governance doesn’t mean approving, say, free college education for all, but it does mean Congress’ dusting off some ideas about making colleges more affordable for all.
We must all bow to the will of the people and make the winner a success, not another point of endless political obstruction. This nation cannot endure four to eight years of more gridlock. And if you can’t understand that, you are part of the problem.