By: Rob Harris
Constitutional democracy is a powerful force. The balance of powers between branches of government stirs the ardor of every citizen. A government leader’s determination to stand up to an out of control legislature signals individual strength in the face of tyranny.
Drum roll, please. Fife music.
For perhaps the first time in American government, an elected leader has exercised the veto power to…block the reinstatement of a golf course pro.
Amsterdam, New York mayor, Ann Thane, and the Common Council have been battling over whether to replace the local municipal golf course’s long time pro with a reputed hot shot from eleven miles down the road. Mayor Thane, bolstered by recommendations of the local Golf Commission, was inclined to make the switch. The Common Council, however, demonstrating loyalty to the existing pro, balked.
After the pro’s contract expired, Mayor Thane refused to renew it. The Common Council passed a resolution calling for his reinstatement. Mayor Thane, reaching for her quill pen no doubt and perhaps with thoughts of John Hancock in her mind, called the Council’s action a “defining moment for them” and then promptly vetoed the resolution.
The ball thus moved back to the Council’s court. At last report, they are considering whether to seek to override the veto. Claiming that the Council has no legal ability to “usurp” the mayor’s power which, she contends, can only be done by referendum, Mayor Thane has suggested the matter may end up in court.
Is this a great country, or what?