“Our country is now as close to crossing the line from democracy to autocracy as it has been in our lifetimes.” — E. J. Dionne, Jr.
It is the public debate of the moment: is Donald Trump precipitating a crisis of American democracy? For some the answer is an emphatic “yes.” Trump’s disregard for the institutions and political norms of U.S. democracy is imperiling the Republic. The sooner his presidency collapses the sooner the healing can begin and the ship of state righted. For others Trump is not the villain in this drama. Rather, his young presidency is the conduit, not the cause, of Americans’ deep-seated anger towards a privileged and self-dealing Washington elite. Trump’s disruption of politics as usual is what America needs to start the process of restoring democracy by the people, for the people.
The twenty-first semi-annual Munk Debate, held on October 12th, 2017, pits award-winning journalist E. J. Dionne, Jr. and influential author and blogger Andrew Sullivan against former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich and bestselling author and editor Kimberley Strassel to debate the current crisis of American democracy.