Texas Gov. Perry gets it

Yesterday,  Rick Perry (R-Texas), governor of Texas, had a commentary piece at statesman.com referencing the 10th Amendment. Frequently I note the federal government – for the past 75 years – has hooked states and local municipalities on cold, hard cash, in the form of federal grants.

Over the years, the states and towns have become more and more dependent on these funds and quite honestly, the job description of representatives and senators that head to Washington D.C. to represent us starts off with “bring home the bacon.”

Has the 10th Amendment become passé?

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

It’s a pretty simple statement, but one that is routinely ignored. Where in The U.S. Constitution does it state that the federal government can provide federal tax dollars to provide cell phones to those on welfare? If you think The Constitution does allow for this type of spending, what would be “over the line” for you?

Perry notes

At a time when the federal government is passing trillion-dollar bailouts, bullying states to increase taxes and bureaucracies, and even taking control of private companies, Americans are increasingly reconnecting with the concept of limited government in that [10th] amendment.

I can’t say I was surprised that critics recast my defense of federalism and fiscal discipline into advocacy for secession from the Union. I have never advocated for secession and never will.

Like the president, members of Congress and every other state governor, I have sworn oaths to our nation and Constitution. My sincere pledge to uphold and defend the Constitution has fueled my concern and my statements about the recent unprecedented expansion of our federal government

For many, federal involvement is required simply because they think income must be redistributed; taken from one and provided directly to another. But Perry – like other states – have proven their system can work.

Those looking for the positive impact of limited government and fiscal conservatism should turn their eyes to Texas. Our Constitution limits our Legislature to 140 days every two years with the bottom line of a balanced budget. Our freedom from an income tax makes Texas attractive to employers and entrepreneurs as do the state’s predictable regulatory climate and fair legal system. Add hard-working Texans to our opportunity-friendly environment, and you start to understand why the state leads the nation in exports, job creation and Fortune 500 companies. Limited government works.

Why do we even bother with an oath of office at the federal level when we know politicians will completely ignore that oath?

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Steve McGough

Steve's a part-time conservative blogger. Steve grew up in Connecticut and has lived in Washington, D.C. and the Bahamas. He resides in Connecticut, where he’s comfortable six months of the year.

1 Comment

  1. Linda Mae on May 19, 2009 at 4:06 pm

    Like the president, members of Congress and every other state governor, I have sworn oaths to our nation and Constitution. My sincere pledge to uphold and defend the Constitution

    Yet there are members of Congress ( Pelosi, Waxman, Markey, Waters, Sadowsky, Frank & DiLauro who are also members of the American Socialist Party.  How can they honor their oath to our nation when they also have sworn to destroy the Constitution in favor of Socialism?  The link from the American Socialist party to Congress members has been removed as of last month.  I'm glad that I copied and pasted it into an email to friends.  They don't belong in office.

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