Issues At a Glance (see below for more detail)
- Debt: Will vote against it and will use every procedure available to prevent it.
- Obamacare: Unconstitutional. Doesn't need replacing. It needs to be canned.
- 2nd Amendment: The federal government doesn't have the right to tell Texans what they can do with their guns.
- NSA Scandal: When the government intrudes into our lives and we can't say no to it, our freedom is lost. Completely oppose.
- Immigration: Illegal immigrants are here illegally. Secure the border. If the feds won't stop this, the Texas State Legislature should.
- Social Issues: Like the 2nd Amendment, the federal government has no constitutional authority to tell Texans how they worship, what lives can be protected, or what marriage is.
This Election is Critical for The Future of Texas
What's Wrong with Federal Government and How to Fix It
The NSA and the Beauty of No
Illegal Immigration / Amnesty
The Constitution, Abortion, and the 10th Amendment
Jobs / Economy / Energy
Healing Division in America
What's Wrong with Federal Government and How to Fix It
If you take the text of the Constitution of the United States, as ratified by the founders of our country, and paste it into Microsoft Word, it's about nine pages in length.
Have you ever asked yourself why it is so short? The owner's manual for our country is far shorter than the owner's manual for my microwave oven, to put it in comparative terms.
Why is that?
Because the powers of the federal government were never intended to be anything but few.
Have you seen the Texas Constitution? Article I of the Texas Constitution is nearly as long as the federal Constitution and there are seventeen articles in the Texas Constitution. It is far bigger.
Why is that?
Because the powers not granted to the federal government belong to the states, and what the States kept for themselves was pretty much everything else that citizens encounter in the ordinary course of their daily lives.
This is called Federalism: a federation of States created a central federal government and delegated supremacy over these States only in a few, specific areas.
There are three branches to our federal government: Legislative, Executive, and Judicial. The few and limited powers of the federal government apply, of course, to all three federal branches.
That last point is key - you might want to read it again.
So when the federal government must extend its list of powers, what's the only legitimate, constitutional process for that?
If you said "Amendment," you would be right.
Unfortunately today, this is how it works...
Congress passes a law that clearly overreaches the bounds set forth of the Constitution. The President signs it, and then a state (or several) will sue the federal government for usurping a power that belongs to the states. The Supreme Court hears the case, and decides in some contorted ruling that the overreach is not a violation of the Constitution and determines that the law is constitutional.
My question to you: is the Supreme Court the final arbiter of whether any law is constitutional?
The right answer is: only within the limited powers of the federal government. James Madison himself said, "The judicial power [of the national government] should correspond with the legislative."
But if you think that might not be the right answer, I have a one-word reply to change your mind: Obamacare.
The federal government does not get to assign itself new powers outside of the Constitution by the edict of the Supreme Court.
Article III, Section 2, Clause I of the Constitution states, "The judicial Power shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United States..."
The key phrase is "arising under this Constitution." The Court does get to judge laws that are passed within the bounds of the Constitution. A federal court can weigh in on federal matters. The Supreme Court was never intended to be an imperial court, as many authors from Thomas Jefferson to Mark Levin have argued.
Every branch of federal government comes with checks for balance so that no branch might become imperial. The court has two checks: Congress has the power to impeach, and the president can refuse to execute unconstitutional acts.
The core problem with our government today is that these checks are not applied because WE, the people, elect politicians who are disrespectful about the limits placed on the federal government. As a result, we do not hold members of Congress accountable to these limitations. It doesn't help that so many citizens (and non-citizens) want unconstitutional goodies handed out by a federal government drunk on power.
Most people, if you ask them, say that the power of the federal government has grown too large.
If you ask them how that happened, they mostly shrug.
Perhaps it has grown too large because rather than forcing the federal government to stay within its proper constitutional limits, we have allowed the federal courts to decide on legislation that escaped constitutional limits, and by doing so, we allowed them to take away the rights of states and the people through the process I outline above.
Only by insisting on the founding principle of Federalism across all three branches of government can we reverse this course. Determining constitutionality must begin by insisting that the powers of the federal government remain limited and explicit, according to the few and specific powers enumerated within the Constitution.
We don't need a revolution to change this. We need to get ourselves educated on the "rules" by which Washington must operate, and then we need the spine to hold our politicians in Washington accountable. We must only allow them to legislate within the limited powers granted to the federal government. When they don't, we must replace them, by any legal means necessary.
If enough people believe strongly in Federalism and insist on it, then the federal laws written by truly constitutional politicians will not absorb our attention every day as they do now. And that, my fellow Texan, is freedom.
Obamacare/Affordable Care Act
I am surprised that no one discusses its blatant unconstitutionality anymore. Make no mistake: it should be repealed, and if it isnít, the States should be resolved not to participate, period.
Obviously, any correction to this rogue unconstitutional government will have to originate in the States.
I do not --DO NOT-- advocate for so-called "repeal and replace." Obamacare is socialism at its core and as Bastiat so eloquently stated:
"It would be impossible, therefore, to introduce into society a greater change and a greater evil than this - the conversion of the law into an instrument of plunder."
Batsiat defined socialism as plunder; the act of using the force of government to steal the labor and earnings of one group or individual, for the purpose of giving it to another group or individual.
Ultimately, Obamacare is just another unconstitutional power grab by our now unlimited National -- not federal-- Government, with the support of an out of control judiciary.
Face it; there is no morality, virtue, or principle, in the excessive debt we incur.
We have upwards of 17 trillion dollars in debt, growing larger every day, and we have over 220 trillion dollars in unfunded liabilities. The reality of our situation is that there is not enough currency in circulation on planet earth to pay this off, and yet we continue to increase the debt at every opportunity.
You call yourself a conservative? I say PROVE IT!
Before voting for an incumbent, find out whether they have ever --EVER-- voted in favor of raising the debt ceiling, thereby increasing the size of this unconstitutional government as well. If they have, FIRE THEM!
If a new candidate cannot say with certainty that they will never --NEVER-- vote to increase the debt ceiling and expand the size and scope of the Federal Government, DO NOT VOTE FOR THEM!
I call this method of voting "Putting Texas First!".
I can say with all certainty that I will never --NEVER-- vote to increase the debt ceiling or the size of the Federal Government. A real conservative would never go along with this insanity. It is impossible to vote for more debt and then say you are looking out for the future of Texas. America has over 220 trillion dollars in unfunded liabilities, 17 trillion in immediate debt, and runs over a trillion dollar a year deficit. Common sense tells us that at some point we will have a correction, and the larger we allow this debt to get, the more devastating that correction will be. Debt and the destruction of our currency is the biggest issue of our time, and future generations of Texans deserve better.
THE RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED.
Because of a trial in Florida, President Obama and Attorney General Holder want to have a debate on stand-your-ground legislation which has been adopted by some individual States. Simply put; it's none of their business.
For those who care about the Constitution and the proper use of the Bill of Rights:
The federal Bill of Rights is a restriction on the Federal Government only. The members of the 1st Congress were crystal clear on this. The preamble has meaning. The term "shall not be infringed" has meaning. The men that created, debated, and ratified the federal Bill of Rights wanted it understood that, among other things, the Federal Government had no business anywhere near the issue of Arms. That is the plain and simple truth no matter what a few progressive, unelected, well-connected lawyers have said to the contrary.
Research the "Incorporation Doctrine" and you will learn how the SCOTUS has almost completely destroyed federalism and state sovereignty.
PROTECTING THE 2ND AMENDMENT
I am proud to have an "AQ" rating by the NRA's Political Victory Fund!
THE TEXAS CONSTITUTION - ARTICLE 1. - BILL OF RIGHTS
Sec. 23. RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS. Every citizen shall have the right to keep and bear arms in the lawful defense of himself or the State; but the Legislature shall have power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms, with a view to prevent crime.
Make no mistake, American gun owners are under attack, and "progressive" ideology, that wants to take away our unalienable right to protect ourselves, has all but overtaken the Federal Government.
Today, because of unconstitutional misinterpretations by 20th century supreme court judges, the federal Bill of Rights is constantly being violated by the Federal Government. I suggest everyone reread the Preamble to the Bill of Rights. The members of the St Congress did not mince words:
"THE Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of ITS powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution." (emphasis added)
Let us be clear; the Federal Government has no authority under the Constitution --NONE-- to involve itself in any area restricted under the Bill of Rights. So when it comes to guns, they are not to infringe, no matter what the Supreme Court has unconstitutionally ruled to the contrary.
And don't forget the globalist elites; the United Nations.
Read this one of hundreds of documents created by the United Nations. Their goal can only be to disarm individual citizens around the world. We cannot allow that to happen to Texans.
Both political parties have contributed to our involvement with the UN in these anti-liberty and anti-property rights initiatives. America is on the path to a catastrophic bankruptcy, and yet we pay for almost 1/4 the budget of this self appointed global government. We need the US out of the UN, and the UN out of the US. And I mean that literally.
We all need to advise our state legislators to create legislation making it absolutely clear that Texas will not participate in, or recognize, any gun control measures not originated by the citizens the State of Texas.
It doesn't matter who originates these measures. They can be created by our own federal government, or by "initiatives" and/or "treaties" with foreign entities such as the United Nations. All they need to know is that in the State of Texas any and all such unconstitutional actions will fall on deaf ears.
The NSA and The Beauty of No
Make no mistake: some of the actions of the NSA and of the alphabet soup of other federal agencies are blatantly un-Constitutional. Through regulations and warrantless spying on American citizens, the federal government has gone too far. As Senator from the State of Texas, not only will I consistently vote against such actions, I will work hard to find ways to stop it and hold these agencies accountable to the American people.
Locke spoke of "liberty consisting in a power to act or to forbear acting." In its simplest terms, liberty is your ability to say yes or no.
Locke also said that if a person did not have the ability to act, then that person has no liberty.
The Nationalists in America work every day to remove your liberty by stripping you of the power of saying, "No." Let me say this straight out: when you cannot say "No" to the federal government either personally or through your State legislature, you are not free.
We see this in the media when the Republican Party is derided as the "Party of No."
We see this in the use of federal money to bribe the States into obedience with mandates.
We see this in our personal lives when the surveillance state records our actions without our consent.
"No" is as much a beautiful act of freedom as the word "Yes" is. Without both, you have no freedom. You only have coerced acceptance.
Our inalienable right to life and liberty does not allow us to injure the life and liberty of others, and we law-abiding citizens should never allow our government to strip us of those rights. Remember: the larger government grows, the more your freedom withers.
Illegal Immigration / Amnesty
Illegal immigration is an issue I've seen here in Texas forever, as a citizen, as an employee, and as an employer. I've worked beside illegal immigrants on the job. As a state bridge contractor for 15 years, I unknowingly hired a few, either directly or through subcontractors. As few people do, I understand this issue from many sides.
I wholeheartedly support legal immigration.
The State of Texas has the right, without qualification, to determine which foreigners can be in Texas. Anyone not here legally compromises our laws and stresses our State. Illegal immigration is not in the best interests of Texas.
Amnesty is a non-starter. When I was a teenager entering the workforce, illegal aliens were not a recognized issue. They received no taxpayer-funded benefits, healthcare, or education. Over the years, Supreme Court rulings forced the States to provide benefits and recognized birthright citizenship. These granted benefits added to our national debt and the economic strife we endure today.
This cycle hurts the State of Texas. We cannot allow illegal immigrants to instantly become legalized. The vast majority of them have no concept of a Republic or how it operates, nor do they understand why limited government is so important. If you bestow voting rights on people who have no concept of liberty, much less an understanding of how to protect it, the American way of life will be finished and the Republic of Texas will be no more.
The solution to this is to secure and protect our border. Our national security, State security, and State sovereignty are at stake. Until we have secured the border and stopped the influx of foreigners who come here illegally, we will never be able to truly address the issue. Border security, tight and firm, is the first prerequisite to any discussion about immigration. Every Texan knows this.
I realize that there are those working actively to "turn Texas blue" and they see so-called "immigration reform" as a means to achieve that. I will tell you simply - if that happens, I don't know when the United States will elect a Republican president again. No matter which side of the aisle you're on, you deserve a choice in elections.
Illegal immigration is just that: illegal. Creating alternative pathways to citizenship, as in amnesty, is a slap in the face to every Texan who legally arrived here from another country, and would be nothing more than a reward for breaking the laws. Texans should demand that the Federal Government fulfill its legal obligation under Article IV, Section 4, to protect us from invasion and to guarantee us a Republican form of government. Let's try enforcing existing law and see if we still have a problem with our immigration policies.
Until the border is secure and the current laws are enforced, there is no discussion to have about amending immigration policy.
The Constitution, Abortion, and the 10th Amendment
I invite you to administer a quick test the next time that someone tells you they strongly support the 10th Amendment.
The 10th Amendment, if you are unaware, reads as follows:
"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."
The framers knew that if left to the Federal Government to decide, there would be no limits to its authority whatsoever. The Constitution created a Republic based in federalism, to which the States agreed. The purpose of federalism was to leave all questions of powers not pursuant to the Federal Constitution in the hands of the States or the people. If anyone in a State didn't like the rules, they could move to a State more accommodating to their viewpoint.
Based upon this original intent, the Constitution of the United States gives the Federal Government no authority whatsoever to involve itself in the issue of abortion.
You might want to read that again. Like many other issues, the Federal Government has no authority in the matter of abortion, if the Constitution is your guide.
The Supreme Court decision, Roe v Wade, was unconstitutional when it was rendered, and remains unconstitutional today. The power to legislate on behalf of the unborn resides in the individual States.
Since early in the 20th century, the members of the Supreme Court have done little to uphold their oath to protect and defend the Constitution. With little, if any, check from Congress, the Supreme Court has consistently injured the Constitution by empowering the National (no-longer federal) Government with authorities the Constitution clearly does not provide.
Texans should not have to answer to a National overlord when it comes to outlawing the murder of babies in the womb as a choice of birth control, and our Texas legislature should simply not comply. The legislature should tell the Federal Government to pound sand, get on with the business of managing the affairs of Texas, and set an example for other States of how to deal with unconstitutional overreach by this out-of-control National government.
The United States (plural) began as free and independent States, sovereign within their own borders, with a limited Federal Government acting only as a light glue. Today, we are a United State (singular) with 50 states acting more like counties, each tasked to administer the dictates of a National Government with no longer limited powers.
While this statement is about abortion, it applies equally to every matter not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution. Any deviation from that founding principle of Federalism allows the Federal Government to rule over us and strips us of the freedom it was intended to protect. Power must reside as closely to the people as possible in order to achieve a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. The Federal Government was given very few enumerated powers. The framers provided the 10th Amendment to us as a final answer to questions of Constitutionality involving anything not clearly pursuant to the Constitution. Anything less than that only emboldens a National government to do whatever it chooses while forcing the States to comply.
Jobs / Economy / Energy
I have been in business for almost 20 years, and I can tell you with all certainty, the government cannot "create jobs," it can only create liabilities. The unconstitutional and expansive size of the government, and its century-long attempt to control the economy, has led to the creation of our greatest enemy; debt.
If we can get a handle on the debt, we will necessarily get control of our budget. If you ever hear me speak, you will hear three points that are set on stone
Let's bring the discussion back to federalism (Statesí rights). Let's start talking about how we divest this National (no-longer federal) Government of all unconstitutional power, and return them to the States where they belong.
- I will never vote to increase the debt.
- I will never vote to increase the size and scope of the federal government.
- I will never vote to increase its unconstitutional powers.
Energy is not a federal issue - Constitutionally, it's a States' rights issue. Texas should determine its energy policy in the best interests of Texas.
Healing Division in America
Throughout America, there is talk of the division in our society: political division, racial division, and economic division. This mostly happens because we tend to remain in our comfort zones - "preaching to the choir," so to speak. We don't engage those outside our inner circles. If we aim to influence and attract others, we must widen our circles and start engaging everyone and see where the conversation goes. Regardless of whatever perceived divisions there might be, we must start a dialogue, and even though we might disagree, we might reach understanding.
This isn't a new concept. In fact, it's a tried and true concept. From Martin Luther King to Andrew Breitbart, people who were unafraid to talk with others of different convictions were able to break down barriers and create opportunities for peace and thereby circumvent division.
I spent my first ten years of life in a predominantly black and Hispanic area of Baytown, Texas. The elementary school I attended had been an all-black high school not too long before I entered kindergarten. Looking back, this period in my life played a large part in defining who I would become as an adult. It taught me, and still educates me today, that people are people. We all seek to have relationships and be understood.
I find it difficult to understand why so many of us have allowed divisive paradigms to stop us from engaging in meaningful discussion. I decided a few years ago that I would engage people of all backgrounds. I will engage in discussion with almost anyone that is willing. A U. S. Congressman, who represents the great Lone Star State, must be willing to speak to all Texans, otherwise being a Representative becomes exclusionary and divisive.
Conversation doesn't imply acceptance; if it did, Washington would be a place of great bliss. In America, freedom of speech gives us all the right to air our opinions and disagreements. Conversation can only help us heal the divisions that we see today.