Representative Lynn's letter is a great history refresher for all Americans. She set the stage by recounting the circumstances that prompted the move for independence in 1776 and the principles that provided the bedrock of our Constitution. Masterfully, she points out the dangerous path that our nation now walks:
So there are clear limits to the power of the federal government. However, today the simple and clear expression of purpose has turned into the modern expectation that the national government has an obligation to ensure our life, to create our liberty, and fund our pursuit of happiness. The national government has become a complex system of programs whose purposes lie outside of the responsibilities of the enumerated powers and of securing our natural rights; programs that benefit some while others must pay.
Today, the federal government seeks to control the salaries of those employed by private business, to change the provisions of private of contracts, to nationalize banks, insurers and auto manufacturers, and to dictate to every person in the land what his or her medical choices will be.
Forcing property from employers to provide healthcare, legislating what individuals are and are not entitled to, and using the labor of some so that others can receive money that they did not earn goes far beyond securing natural rights and the enumerated powers.
The role of our American government has been blurred, bent, and breached. Adherence to the specific powers and the fundamental American ideal that our government is based on the theory of natural rights expressed ever so simply as
the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness and that no government can deny these rights; the rights endowed to us by our creator must be restored.
To be sure, the People created the federal government to be their agent for certain enumerated purposes only. The Constitutional ratifying structure was created so it would be clear that it was the People, and not the States, that were doing the ratifying.
The Tenth Amendment defines the total scope of federal power as being that which has been delegated by the people to the federal government, and also that which is absolutely necessary to advancing those powers specifically enumerated in the Constitution of the United States. The rest is to be handled by the state governments, or locally, by the people themselves.
The Constitution does not include a congressional power to override state laws. It does not give the judicial branch unlimited jurisdiction over all matters. It does not provide Congress with the power to legislate over everything. This is verified by the simple fact that attempts to make these principles part of the Constitution were soundly rejected by its signers.
With this in mind, any federal attempt to legislate beyond the Constitutional limits of Congress’ authority is a usurpation of state sovereignty - and unconstitutional.
Amen, sister! As the federal government attempts to erase all remnants of legitimate federalism it is the duty of the state governments to demand their sovereignty. The 10th Amendment is a powerful statement on the limits of the federal government in the united States of America. It is time each state erect a giant middle finger and direct it at the Kremlin on the Potomac.
Representative Susan Lynn's letter is also posted at the Tenth Amendment Center website. If you need more information about the 10th Amendment, how it has been abused, and how "we the people" can reclaim it, spend some time at the Tenth Amendment Center.