Monday, April 23, 2018

Restoring Federalism with the "State Powers Amendment"

On Tuesday morning, April 24, 2018, the Missouri 'Rules, Joint Rules, Resolutions and Ethics Committee' will be holding a hearing on SCR 48, State Powers Amendment, which is a proposed amendment that (originally proposed by my friend Lloyd Thomas Sloan), more than any other proposal I've seen to date, has the potential to undo the damage which the last century has done to our system of government. If you can't attend, submit a witness form to make your voice heard.

Here's what I submitted:
"Several witness statements have gone into detail on the workings of the State Powers Amendment, and so I'd like to focus on what I see as being the most important aspect of this proposed amendment: That it returns a measure of influence and power in the Federal Govt, to the states, which has been largely absent for a century now.

Prior to the passage of the 17th Amendment, most states still had their state legislators elect their senators, which meant that a senator who hoped to be elected, or re-elected, had to be familiar with the relatively small number of legislators in their state, who directly represented their constituents. Candidates for the Senate had to be knowledgeable about their concerns and expectations of their state legislators, they had to address them in good faith and maintain their respect, or risk losing their senatorial office. Meaningful campaigning, meant engaging in and maintaining those conversations and relationships, it consumed little time and even less expense, and substantive discussions could be had, and worthwhile decisions could be made, with relatively little in the way of concern for misleading publicity tactics and empty, but crowd pleasing, speeches.

Since the passage of the 17th Amendment, our federal Senators no longer need to worry about a relative handful of state legislators (and less so their constituents), they no longer need to worry about the opinions of those who intimately know the real interests of our state, now they only need worry about using a political campaign machine to mouth attention getting sound bites to millions of voters at a distance, appealing only to the most shallow and attention getting of statements (the soundness of which matters little) knowing full well that if they can just raise enough funds to plaster enough meaningless drivel around the state, they won't need to engage in anything more substantial than having to smile on a tractor, or in a diner, in order to collect the votes needed to secure THEIR power in Washington D.C.

This State Powers Amendment, with its very credible threat from a Representative Majority of States having the power to repeal legislation, and regulations, which are perceived to go against the interests of their state legislators, would go a long ways towards turning the interests of the States into a power to be reckoned with again, in Washington D.C.

And not only would the interests of a Representative Majority of States be of interest to our federal legislators, but with its ability to also impact the " the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and all inferior courts and tribunals of the United States", the courts, and the bureaucracy, would also discover a newfound need to respect the interests and preferences of the several states."
Submit your Witness Form here

The Senate Rules Committee

The Chair is Senator Kehoe (Room 321 at the Capitol)
The phone is (573) 751-2076

If you are in Missouri, call or submit a Witness Form Tuesday morning. If you do not live in Missouri, contact your state legislators about proposing the same in your state. Unlike many other proposals in recent years, this one is doable.

Just do it!

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