Through the Obama years and even into the Trump administration, Democrats have voted a range of powers for the president that gives him almost unlimited authority, out of a combination of the foolish conviction that no one untrustworthy would inherit Obama's tools, and cowardice about voting against mass surveillance and being criticized by war on terror hawks.
Six of these superweapons are frankly terrifying: the power to start a war without Congressional authorization (Authorization for Use of Military Force); the power to enter into trade deals without Congressional authorization (fast-tracking); the power to lock anyone up without charge (National Defense Authorization Act); the power to assassinate Americans (AUMF -- again); total control over the US election infrastructure (Obama DHS directive).
This is why it's so important to elect Democrats who aren't beholden to the party establishment and its paymasters in finance, military contracting, surveillance, and big business.
Think about this. Besides unlimited trade authority, many Democrats also voted to continue to give Trump unlimited war powers with the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF). Thirteen Democratic senators voted to continue to have no congressional oversight over Trump’s wars. Remember that the next time Jean Shaheen, Claire McCaskill, Mark Warner and Sheldon Whitehouse try to tell you they’re part of the resistance. No, they’re part of the “freesistance”—giving Trump a free pass for unlimited war. They’re paid employees of the war profiteers. Having the word “Senator” before your name just means you’re one of the more highly paid employees. It just means you have a bathroom that others aren’t allowed to use.
A few weeks ago, Congress passed a spending bill that took away the remaining congressional oversight of the intelligence community. Before that, they voted to continue giving Trump unlimited surveillance abilities. According to The Intercept, “Leading the charge against reforms of the FBI’s domestic spying powers was Rep. Adam Schiff of California, the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee who, in countless TV appearances, has strongly insinuated, if not outright stated, that Trump is controlled by and loyal to Russian President Vladimir Putin.”
Six Ways the 'Resistance' Gave Trump a Dictator’s Toolkit [Lee Camp/Truthdig]
(via Naked Capitalism)