Prof: Lack of Power Will 'Frustrate' New President; Don't Count on Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump Delivering on Vows That Only She or He Can Make America Better If Elected President, a Political Science Professor Told a St. Vincent College Audience Wednesday. [Derived Headline]

By Napsha, Joe | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 13, 2016 | Go to article overview

Prof: Lack of Power Will 'Frustrate' New President; Don't Count on Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump Delivering on Vows That Only She or He Can Make America Better If Elected President, a Political Science Professor Told a St. Vincent College Audience Wednesday. [Derived Headline]


Napsha, Joe, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


Don't count on Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump delivering on vows that only she or he can make America better if elected president, a political science professor told a St. Vincent College audience Wednesday.

It is far more likely the winner will not fulfill all campaign promises and will fall far short of being a change agent, Benjamin Kleinerman, a constitutional democracy professor at Michigan State University, told more than 260 people on the Unity campus for a discussion about presidential politics.

"They both are going to be frustrated that they won't be able to change government," Kleinerman said. "Once they get in, they will see the limits of their power."

The two leading presidential candidates have built up a set of expectations that can't be fulfilled, he said.

As for Trump's promises to change how government operates, Kleinerman said, "I don't think he fully understands the limitations of presidential power."

Even if the new president's party controls both the House and Senate, the margins tend to be so slim that the minority party can mount a filibuster to frustrate the majority, Kleinerman said at the Civitas Forum.

The current political atmosphere will hamper either Trump, the Republican candidate, or Clinton, the Democrat, in working with the opposition party to get anything accomplished in a dysfunctional federal government, Kleinerman said.

"Working with the other side is to betray your team," he said.

A prime example is how Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, famously said before the mid-term elections in 2010 that his most important goal was to make President Obama a one- term president, Kleinerman said. …

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