Conservatives must remember that although we have focused as a movement on budgetary issues and profligate spending, we are under assault on a number of other fronts. I have noticed that there are a number of conservative in Congress who don’t care or know much about issues not directly related to the budget. That is especially true on the issue of immigration. The irony is that amnesty for illegal aliens and boundless low-skilled immigration will break our budget quicker than any other policy initiative. Yet, many conservatives in the House are either indifferent or downright supportive of some of the amnesty proposals percolating through congress. We have certainly seen this with some social issues as well.
Over the next few weeks, the focus in Congress will shift from the debt to issues to guns and illegal immigration. We must stay engaged in all issues that relate to our liberties and sovereignty as a nation. While some Tea Party and libertarian organizations have sat on the fence on some “non-economic” issues, the Heritage Foundation has continued to fight for all three legs of the Reagan stool. If you read nothing else today on the web, I encourage you to take a look at two articles from Heritage’s Vice President, David Addington. The first one, on immigration, cuts to the core of the duplicitous language that GOP and Democrats supporters of amnesty have been advancing:
Grants of amnesty, regardless of the form of the reward they give to aliens who knowingly entered or remain the U.S., discourage respect for the law, treat law-breaking aliens better than law-following aliens, and encourage future unlawful immigration into the United States. If America suddenly awards legal status to aliens unlawfully in the United States, it will treat them better than aliens abroad who follow America’s immigration procedures and patiently await their opportunity to get a visa authorizing them to come to the United States. And, of course, if America suddenly awards legal status to aliens unlawfully in the U.S., it will, as the IRCA amnesty proved, spur more aliens to enter or remain unlawfully in the United States, in the confident expectation that Congress will continue enacting future amnesties that provide aliens unlawfully in the U.S. a shortcut to legal status. The government should pursue a measured set of approaches to a wide variety of immigration issues, but in all events exclude amnesty for aliens unlawfully in the United States.
The second piece, on the Senate’s upcoming gun grabbing bill, notes how the bill actually contains a new tax to service the expanded background checks.
Title I of the Reid gun control bill purports to “fix gun checks.” The proposed “fix” in section 122 of S. 649 is to take away an individual’s right to sell or give away a firearm to another individual unless, in most cases, the individual (1) uses a licensed importer, dealer, or manufacturer to make the transfer of the firearm and (2) pays a fee to that importer, dealer, or manufacturer to make the transfer. The individual transferring the firearm is not actually receiving a service; the federal government is receiving the service. The service the government gets is a background check on the intended recipient of the firearm, because the law requires the importer, dealer, or manufacturer to run the recipient through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
Forcing the individual to pay for the government-mandated service, which is in fact a service to the government, is in essence a federal tax on the individual. And the amount the individual pays as a fee is not limited by the legislation; section 122(a)(4) of the Reid bill enacts a new section 922(t)(4)(B)(i) of title 18 of the U.S. Code to grant to Attorney General Eric Holder the power to set the maximum fee by regulation.
It’s important to note that according to this well founded observation from Mr. Addington, the Senate bill would actually be unconstitutional under the so-called “blue slip rule.” Pursuant to the Origination Clause of the Constitution, all revenue-raising bills must originate in the House. Woops! This bill is dead even before it gets off the ground.
We must remember that our Republic is under assault on many different fronts. It’s not just about out-of-control spending. Liberals seek to remake our Republic in all different ways. Taking away guns is certainly the first step. But remaking our society with a flood of undocumented Democrat voters is also another way they intend to force through their anti-liberty agenda. We must engage on all issues. Unfortunately, many Republicans are willing to capitulate on some of these other issues (not that they are great on spending either). At the Madison Project, we are committed to only endorsing candidates who are committed to fighting for all principles of the the conservative movement.
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