Why Trump's Resignation Won't Prevent Another Badly Behaved, Power-Hungry President

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President Donald Trump speaks in Washington, D.C. on Dec. 12. Getty

Should President Donald Trump resign over allegations of sexual misconduct? Yes, if they're true, and his party should hold him accountable.

But the increased calls for Trump's resignation illustrate a far larger implication about government abuse of power.

Trump's uncivil behavior certainly sets a bad example. During the 2016 presidential campaign, he was famously caught on tape not just admitting, but bragging about, having gotten away with inappropriate sexual behavior, affording some veracity to the recent allegations by women who have come forward to describe his having forcibly kissed or groped them. Republicans should denounce him for that.

Of course, though, Trump won't resign. Like countless politicians before him—we've seen allegations of sexual misconduct against presidents from Thomas Jefferson to Warren Harding to Bill Clinton—he wields inappropriately the power he has accrued.

But that power extends beyond affairs of the libido, and into those of finance and justice. In the business world, Trump took advantage of government power and used eminent domain against a fellow property owner. As president, Trump has also exerted his power unfairly, when, for example, he banned all travelers from certain Muslim countries, without due process.

So what can be done? We can keep striving to elect only good people, but it's impossible to guarantee respectable, fair behavior from our elected and appointed officials, who, like the rest of us, are imperfect.

What we can do is eliminate the incentives.

Libertarians advocate slashing the size of government for reasons both moral and practical. Not only do freedom of choice and the right to peacefully pursue one's own goals make people happy, they are also the proven path to the most prosperity, for the most people.

But there's a little-discussed side benefit of making government tiny: You reduce the incentives enticing abusive, greedy, power-hungry scoundrels to run for office.

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Rachel Crooks, Jessica Leeds and Samantha Holvey, who have accused Trump of sexual harassment, are seen during a press conference in New York City on Dec. 12. Getty

As long as politicians have the power to give favors to their friends and punish their enemies, it will attract those who lust after that power. Partisans from the left and right concentrate power in the executive branch when they have a president they love, and that power remains even after they have a president they hate—everything from the power to bomb other countries to the de facto power to write laws. Reducing the power of government protects all of us from those abusers who seek to wield it.

Many Libertarians chose to become active in politics not because of a desire to hold power over others, but out of self-defense. We want to take back for Americans our rightful, individual power that politicians have consistently eroded. To that end, in 2018, the Libertarian Party plans to run at least 2,000 candidates nationwide, to give ourselves and our neighbors more and better options at the ballot box, and offer policies that promote individual freedom, limit intrusion in your personal life and protect what you earn.

We hope our candidates will be inherently better people. But just in case, Libertarians want all Americans to enjoy a much smaller government—a government with less power over women. And less power over all of us.

Nicholas Sarwark is chair of the Libertarian National Committee (LNC) and a former public defender and small business owner from Phoenix, Arizona.

Whitney Bilyeu is an LNC member and realtor from Texas. She was also a schoolteacher in the state for nearly two decades.