The manner of Elizabeth Warren’s new appointment was understandable, but at the same time a sign of a disturbing tendency. The Senate confirmation process has slowed to such a crawl that it is making it impossible for the executive to do its job properly. But swerving around its requirements — as the White House did by giving her two non-confirmable posts, and setting up the formal pretence than Warren will be a mere Treasury functionary — is the very opposite of the procedural simplicity and straightforwardness that Warren, in other contexts, always calls for.
Bruce Ackerman argues in this column that the problem is worse than that. An imperial presidency is emerging, he says. Most interesting is the solution he proposes. He wants the White House and the Senate to strike a grand bargain.