Alexander's Column

Pulling the Plug on our Constitution

By Mark Alexander · Mar. 18, 2010
“If the federal government should overpass the just bounds of its authority and make a tyrannical use of its powers, the people … must appeal to the standard they have formed, and take such measures to redress the injury done to the Constitution as the exigency may suggest and prudence justify.” –Federalist No. 33
Democrat Leadership

(Follow the ObamaCare vote here.)

Our Constitution is on life support, and House Democrats are about to pull the plug.

Leaders of the Democrat Party (“Progressives” as they call themselves, Leftists as we call them) have been unable to garner popular or even Democrat Party support for their plan to socialize our health care system. Fortunately, Republicans are united in their opposition to this one issue.

Barack Hussein Obama, titular head of the Demos, proclaimed, “I want some courage. I want us to do the right thing.”

But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi concludes, “Nobody wants to vote for the Senate bill.”

She originally proposed to overtly circumvent our Constitution by way of Rep. Louise Slaughter’s “self-executing rule,” which would allow the House to accept the already-passed Senate health care bill by presumption alone, thus negating a formal up-or-down vote by House members.

Pelosi confessed, “I like it because people don’t have to vote on the Senate bill.”

In the end, Pelosi bowed to public pressure not to “self-execute” and her minions submitted to an up or down vote.

Most of the Leftist-controlled political and popular debate about the Democrat proposal to turn over to the central government control of more than 17 percent of the U.S. economy, is focused on one question or another – what will it cost or save, who will pay and who won’t, who will be covered and for what, will there be enough physicians to support this in 10 years, will federal funds be used for abortion, can our economy afford another trillion dollar boondoggle, does it really address the entitlement cost tsunami we’re facing, ad infinitum.

These might be interesting topics for debate, but none are germane.

The only relevant debate must begin with First Principles, our Constitution and Rule of Law.

Does our Constitution allow the Executive and Legislative branches to collaborate to confer authority upon the federal government over, in this case, so-called “health care reform”?

Those who laid the Foundation of our Constitution were crystal clear about its enumeration of both the authority and limits upon the central government.

James Madison, our Constitution’s primary author, wrote, “The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined [and] will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation and foreign commerce.”

Madison continued, “If Congress can do whatever in their discretion can be done by money, and will promote the General Welfare, the Government is no longer a limited one, possessing enumerated powers, but an indefinite one, subject to particular exceptions.”

(And regarding all those “exemptions” and “exceptions” for members of Congress, I draw your attention to James Madison’s words in Federalist No. 57: “If this spirit shall ever be so far debased as to tolerate a law not obligatory on the legislature, as well as on the people, the people will be prepared to tolerate any thing but liberty.”)

Thomas Jefferson asserted: “[G]iving [Congress] a distinct and independent power to do any act they please which may be good for the Union, would render all the preceding and subsequent enumerations of power completely useless. It would reduce the whole [Constitution] to a single phrase, that of instituting a Congress with power to do whatever would be for the good of the United States; and as sole judges of the good or evil, it would be also a power to do whatever evil they please. Certainly, no such universal power was meant to be given them. [The Constitution] was intended to lace them up straightly within the enumerated powers and those without which, as means, these powers could not be carried into effect.”

Clearly, our Constitution, does not authorize Congress to nationalize health care, anymore than it authorizes Congress to do most of what it does today.

That notwithstanding, Obama and his Leftist cadres in the House and Senate are moving forward with their endeavor to inflict socialized medicine upon the United States.

They have again, one and all, abandoned their oaths to “support and defend” our Constitution.

Democrat “leaders” have all been questioned about constitutional authority, and have uniformly asserted that the question is irrelevant.

Typical of their non-responses was this indignant question from Speaker Pelosi: “Are you serious? Are you serious?”

Such utter contempt for our Constitution explains why Democrats refuse to support any measure to cite constitutional authority for legislation. For example, the Enumerated Powers Act (HR 1359) would require that “Each Act of Congress shall contain a concise and definite statement of the constitutional authority relied upon for the enactment of each portion of that Act,” but for years, insurmountable obstacles have prevented passage of HR 1359 – and you know who they are.


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earl chambers said:

3 March 2010Subject: Healthcare the 2700 page unconstitutional law of 2010Dear Sir,I address this letter to Senator Richard Burr, Senator John McCain, Senator Kay Hagan, & Congressman Michael McIntyre.I find it disturbing that our representation in Washington DC even considers healthcare a constitutional right. Nowhere is there any such stipulation. I for one should know since I defended the constitution from all enemies foreign and domestic. In fact our wonderful Congress in 1996 decided to break its promise on military healthcare for retirees by forcing us to pay cost sharing when we paid it with our blood and sacrifice for over 20 years. The fact is democrats have never cared about military healthcare and this year is no exception. They instead spend all of their time and the taxpayer’s money recreating Medicare and disguise it as a new program without the means to pay for it. Meanwhile, Tricare is the epitome of healthcare rationing and denial of coverage for numerous claims at the expense of those who served. Lately, I understand there is such a lack of moral courage and intestinal fortitude that we would resort to the “slaughter method” procedure. In this way there is no accountability or direct vote. I have one word for this in military vocabulary. Cowards, that is what you are if you subscribe to this procedure. In the military they believe that cowards should be “shot or hung”. Maybe if Congress had those standards they as a group would never dream of such nonsense as the methods discussed on national cable network news.Has it occurred to Congress that the people will stand up to this tyranny and put an end either peacefully or not to all enemies domestic. Making the entire country pay for 22 million uninsured is generational theft. Stealing is a crime. Taxation without representation is unconstitutional. I believe in all my heart a huge movement is coming in November. A movement so severe that no politician will ever see it coming. You see we the people are tired of being ignored. Taking advantage of those who work with our busy schedules by sliding this bill under our noses with fuzzy math and hidden tax increases as far as the eye can see will wake up a sleeping giant. The Japanese made this mistake in WWII and they got nuked. It is time for the political nukes to be unleashed. Any incumbent who did not stand up and fight with all their might will be held to account. Why you ask? Because chapter 11 bankruptcy for America is coming! China is pulling out their money in the treasury as a message. The lies from the CBO with their fuzzy math does not fool the people. Repackaging Medicare and Medicaid version 2 is like putting lipstick on a pig. The bill is still a pig filled with pork of all kinds. A special sausage making that could only come from the top. The irony of the entire bill is the provisions for union medical Cadillac plans. Irony because this is the same Congress who cancelled the F22 and laid off 181,000 union workers of the IAM. I wonder how much the unemployment and lost tax revenue that cost all of the states and US treasury by that brilliant decision. The 63 billion lost in research and development to go with it. The fact that the IAM was willing to cut wages to make the plane cheaper than 350 million each. Hmmm, the same fuzzy math that led us to spend another 17 billion on unemployment benefits without paying as we go. It’s no wonder that we never did what FDR had done in WWII. Has the word war bonds come to mind? But instead like the Dod we run the budget like Enron with little or no accountability. I called the IAM since I am the son of a former union boss who was a conservative Democrat. I asked them to come to Washington with their unemployed aerospace workers and picket the white house. After all it was the leadership who said the plane was a waste of money. My friend freedom isn’t free and the F15 is 35 years old. Our enemies are laughing as they build T50 aircraft while we drawdown our airforce in the middle of a war. When our country is bombed due to lack of air superiority how much will that cost? 9/11 was 85 billion for just 2 twin towers not including the human life. 187 planes does not an air force make. So instead we spend 2 trillion for another unfunded liability. You might say I am on a tangent but then again after 14 months of listening on the airwaves to Congress talk about this bill you can take the time to listen to a veteran even if he doesn’t ask for 8 minutes of your time like I heard the general was denied today. It’s no wonder the military has a bad taste in their mouth from politicians. Mitt Romney had it right when he said the states should decide this issue of healthcare. He used the free market instead of the government to pay for it. There were no free rides. My suggestion is to look at models that have succeeded in several states and let them do it themselves. The federal government should focus on regulatory issues instead that cost little or nothing that can be agreed upon inside 30 days. Issues like pre existing conditions when someone was unemployed changing jobs. Issues like buying across state lines. A pool for small businesses to draw from so they can have lower rates like big companies do. Tax incentives for small business to have benefits. It is not too late to end this 14 month boondoggle of a bill with 2700 pages of waste. The people want you to act on the exact issues I just stated. They do not want a 2 trillion liability. Wake up and smell the coffee please. I’m sorry if I have offended anyone but after 14 months of this I feel violated. As for Medicare you can raise the tax rate to make it sustainable and hire private industry to investigate the fraud, waste and abuse which will only increase if this current healthcare bill is passed. Honestly, you don’t think we haven’t figured all this out by now? I have 5 children all of voting age and I can assure you that any politician who votes yes for this bill along with me and my wife will ensure they never set foot in office again. You will be voted into the soup line where you belong. If you’re mad after reading this letter then I have succeeded in making you look into the mirror. If you voted against this fiasco then regardless of party you know that we the normal Americans who pay taxes and are not rich are fed up with business as usual. Massachusetts figured it out. New jersey figured out. Virginia as well. Maybe after this you can figure out the math. There is no escape and “deeming a bill passed” is political suicide plain and simple. It’s your decision and yours and yours alone. My only question is why did it take a career military NCO to wake you up? I encourage you to pass this onto your friends so they see how the people really think and what the outcome will be as a direct result of your current decision making paradyne.Sincerely,Earl M. Chambers Sr. SFC US Army (retired)

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:12 AM

Harry said:

Great letter Earl! God bless you sir and thank you for your service to this country.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:24 AM

lagodwin said:

I grew up believing we had a government for the people by the people.....I see how my education was flaawed. WE are becoming what our men are so bravely fighting, a dictatorship.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:27 AM

Spiff said:

If Speaker Nancy Pelosi forces her Party's Bill into Law with out a vote it will show that her Party is initiating a dictatorship - There will be no need for to vote for Congressional candidates if they are not able to vote! Spiff

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:30 AM

Bob Sierk said:

It is difficult picking the best “Post” but after having read these for years, I am moved to say, “Well done; well, well done.”

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:36 AM

Richard said:

Mark,What is our, the citizens, remedy when Congress violates the Constitution? I know we can and should vote them out but surely there must be other action when the law of the land is violated? Short of another revolution, without taking that off the table!Class action lawsuit? Libs love those, wouldn't that be ironic!Richard, USAF 1972-1980

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:37 AM

concretebob said:

United Conservatives of Virginia has posted Mr Alexanders essay in its entirety. Thank you, Mr Alexander for the Patriot Post.Sic Semper Tyrannis

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:39 AM

Andrea Drummond said:

I actually had a friend say to me, when I told her passing this without a vote was unconstitutional: "I see your point. But, I personally find it more unconstitutional to let Americans die due to lack of health care coverage...whatever happened to 'life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness'? If you're dead because insurance companies are too greedy or the government is too apathetic to provide health care as a basic right, then you're not going to be able to pursue happiness very successfully!"*headdesk*

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:40 AM

concretebob said:

SFC Chambers, welcome home and thank you for your service to our Nation. I have taken the liberty of cross-posting your letter on our conservative blog, United Conservatives of Virginia, with attribution, but I have omitted your last name. Well said Sir, very well said.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:51 AM

Ileana said:

The communist coup d'etat continues with hostility and disdain for the majority of Americans and with total disregard for the U.S. Constitution, fundamentally transforming the American society as we know it.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:52 AM

David E. Willis said:

If the House passes the Health Care Bill in part and just the changes to the Senate Bill, they should all be impeached.Or better yet not reelected and the President as well.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 11:56 AM

Craig Price said:

Great analysis, Sarge!Spiff's got it right, too--Dictatorship is what it will be.I loved this quote the other day:Winston churchill on Obama-A fanatic is a person who can't change his mind and won't change the subject.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 12:02 PM

RickG said:

My compliments to Earl for so eloquently stating the conesensus opinion of We, The People. We are disgusted and fully "awake" and this shall not stand!The hypocracy and haughtiness of Congress and the current Administration are evident for all to see. Special mention to the current Chief Executive who ran with such "pretty" vague words, kindling hope for transparency, fiscal responsibility and positive "change" in Washington. HAH!! Sadly, this hypocracy and haughty behavior is not confined to either one of the two major political parties, but endemic to Washington. There is no honor evident in Washington, and States Rights seem to be the only answer. "Deem" this garbage "passed" at your own political peril, Congress, and sentence yourselves to the ever-increasing junk-heap of those who have made themselves irrelevant. We, The People, will not forget, we will never forget, and you shall be among the long line of traitors to the Constitution you have sworn to uphold. Our Founders foresaw your cowardice and chicanery, and we cling to the hope we are able to remove you by peaceful, political means. We shall see this November, and I am quite certain MOST of you will be newly unemployed. May God Bless America, amd may traitors to our Constitution and our great Nation get their just deserts, despised,even reviled evermore for the vermin they are!

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 12:03 PM

Jimmy said:

Mark, it’s clear that the Dems don’t give a rip what the majority of America thinks. Yes, we can hope to vote their sorry asses out in November, but what can we do NOW? Phone calls to them appear to be a waste of time. If this crap passes and is signed into law, how long would it take to get this into court and run all the way up the ladder to the Supreme Court? Hopefully, it would get there BEFORE a new court appointee who is sure to be a left leaning wacko. Please advise.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 12:07 PM

GranAnn said:

If the Slaughter solution is used to pass this cumbersome health care bill, all those who would have voted NO should call for the impeachment and expulsion of all Congressmen who chose this unconstitutional method.

Thursday, March 18, 2010 at 12:11 PM