The Good, the Bad, and the Grizzly – Reflections of a Federalist Mama Bear
Bad Bills and Bitter Pills – Democrats Attack the Constitution Through Unconstitutional Bills
Episode One: Legislative Attacks on the Electoral College
Sometimes it feels as if the Constitution has been under more attack and attempted destruction in the recent past than it ever has before. And then I remember that the Constitution has faced attacks as far back as the Progressivise Movement of the late 19th century[i], described by Schambra and West as:
“a total rejection in theory, and a partial rejection in practice, of the principles and policies on which America had been founded and on the basis of which the Civil War had been fought and won only a few years earlier[ii].”
Attacks on the Constitution and our Electoral College[iii] have been increasing in intensity and vitriol. The idea that Americans seek to destroy our Constitution and the founding principles of federalism, individual and state rights is, to me, a bitter pill to swallow.
A perfect example of the total rejection of the Founding Principles is a bill introduced by Representative Grace Meng (D-NY-6) and co-sponsor Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN-9) entitled, “H.R.893 – 21st Century Voting Act[iv].” This brief bill, at just two pages in length and 572 words, not only nationalizes the elections, but eviscerates the constitutionally established Electoral College. It does this through five steps.
These steps are:
- automatically registers Americans to vote at age 18 (or upon receipt of citizenship if older than 18 years of age), denying them their individual rights regarding voting;
- removes the protections of the individual states voting laws and residency requirements;
- restores voting rights to felons immediately upon release from prison (if the inmate had the right to vote previously);
- establishes cyber voting which would be susceptible to outside influence and “hacking”; and
- increases costs incurred by taxpayers for additional oversight of the nationalized elections.
Through these steps, H.R.893 – 21st Century Voting Act does the following:
- DESTROYS the Constitutionally established Electoral College voting system for Presidential elections
- NATIONALIZES all elections, including state and local elections (removing state rights)
- ESTABLISHES a popular vote “mob-rule” election system
- REMOVES INDIVIDUAL VOTING RIGHTS by “immediately” and “permanently” registering each citizen to vote at 18, or upon the granting of U.S. citizenship
- REVOKES state’s rights on control of voting for felons upon “immediate” release from prison, whether the terms of the felon’s sentencing are complete or not (restitution, parole)
- INCREASES TAXPAYER BURDENS by increasing federal spending on state and local elections (for control and monitoring, further removing state control of state elections)
And yet this bill seeks to redefine these powers. The entire text of the bill can be read here:
I have SEVERAL issues with this bill, which is a serious attack on the very Constitutionality of our federal system of 50 separate but equal states.
Issues, by Proposed Legislation Number
- Election Day shall be made a national holiday.
This is the first step towards nationalizing elections, all elections, as the wording indicates “Election Day,” completely ignoring that each state has their own election day for presidential elections, in addition to multiple election days for state elections. Additionally, the right to vote, and the responsibility of every citizen to vote responsibly, is a sacred and solemn obligation, not a day to be trivialized as a holiday, which has shifted from the original meaning of “holiday” to one of barbecues, beer, and ball games.
- Every American shall be automatically, and permanently, registered to vote at the age of 18, or upon receipt of citizenship if older than 18 years of age.
This further nationalizes elections AND ignores each citizen’s right to NOT vote, and is yet another weapon in the progressive arsenal to skew elections. The bill removes your right to choose whether or not you want to register to vote and AUTOMATICALLY AND PERMANENTLY registers you to vote.
The bill does not indicate HOW the automatic and permanent voter registration would be conducted If it automatically registers you to vote. By default, the government will select the party to which you are registered. Since the voter registration is permanent, would it allow you, as the individual in question, the flexibility to change party affiliation? Can one opt out of the voter registry? Not as written.
Let me be very clear: The federal government does NOT have the right to register me to vote, nor to select a political party to which I might want to be registered as a voter. That is the right of every individual.
- Every person released from prison who formerly held the right to vote shall have that right restored immediately upon release.
This is problematic on several levels. I don’t have personal issue with felons who have served, and met, all the conditions of their sentences, including parole and restitution, being allowed to have their voting rights restored. I DO, however, have an issue with “immediate” restoration without completion of their sentences (such as when an inmate is released upon parole or when they fail to pay their restitution). This weakens the Rule of Law and the consequences of criminal behavior.
This is not just an issue of individual rights. This component of the bill is another attack on state’s rights. This step further nationalizes elections and weakens state rights, as each state may or may not choose to allow felons to vote in state elections.
- Voter registration shall be made portable among every State and locality.
This further nationalizes elections. Making voter registration portable among every State AND locality also weakens protections on voter fraud. We already have voter fraud where individuals vote out of their district and state, vote repeatedly, or are not legally permitted to vote due to criminal records or lack of legal citizenship. This would exacerbate the problem.
- Polling place and registration status shall be made available to individual voters online.
Poling information and registration applications should be made available, but as written, this again attacks state rights to how their elections are conducted, which is guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.
- Voting cyber-security protection efforts carried out by Federal agencies shall be streamlined and strengthened.
Multiple articles[v] continue to comment on the fact that the United States government remains vulnerable to cyberattacks. There has also been much controversy regarding whether or not Russia “hacked” the 2016 Presidential election[vi], despite the fact that most of the election devices maintained by county election offices in each state were dummy terminals not linked to the Internet.
If these are current concerns without a networked, ONLINE election, how does the federal government expect to protect an online election? What protections would be put into place, considering we are currently still vulnerable to hacking throughout the entire federal government??? This section is designed to fail.
- Additional Federal resources shall be made to State and local election boards and agencies.
The costs of all United States federal elections are staggering. Billions of dollars are spent on congressional and presidential elections alike. This bill seeks to INCREASE spending on elections, with an unnamed number of “additional federal resources” provided to State and local election boards and agencies.
The 2016 election cycle reveals that the total costs of elections were $6.4 billion, of which slightly over $4.0 billion was spent in congressional races and nearly $2.4 billion was spent in the presidential race. OpenSecrets.org has published the following chart on election costs from 1998 to 2016.
Do we really need to add to the cost of elections, with the federal government, USING TAXPAYER MONEY, nationalizing and taking over the control and monitoring of elections? The answer, my friends, is a definite NO!
- A quadrennial review of voting in America shall be performed each year following the election of the President of the United States.
There is just one question that needs to be asked: TO DO WHAT? Nothing is specified regarding the review, its requirements, or how it any findings of wrongdoing would be resolved. But the Commission established WOULD get their travel expenses paid for attending meetings. Yay.
THIS BILL MUST BE REJECTED BY OUR ELECTED OFFICIALS AS AN ATTACK ON THE CONSTITUTION.
Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution establishes the electoral system of voting for the president via state elections. This bill seeks to undo this Constitutional requirement OUTSIDE of the Constitutionally authorizes methods of amending the Constitution.
It is indeed a bitter pill to see elected officials seek to negate the Constitution. It grieves me to see the democratic party attacking the bedrock principles upon which this great nation was founded, succeeded, and once thrived. But more than grief, I am angered and IRATE by the attacks on our Constitution, attacks that seek to take away Constitutional constraints on the federal government and to destroy the Principles of Federalism that ensure the rights of states and individuals are protected. These attacks on our liberties and our Constitution MUST stop.
We, as citizens of this great nation and these United States, MUST act to prevent such attacks.
- Pay attention to what Congress is submitting for vote. You can track any bill introduced through https://www.congress.gov/
- Contact your elected Senators and Representatives by phone, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, email, AND letter (a written letter is ALWAYS best) and let them know you reject specific unconstitutional bills and WHY. You can find out who your representative is here.
- Tell them you reject any actions that weaken our Constitution in general.
That’s what I’m doing with this bad bill and bitter pill!
[i] “The Progressive Transformation of American Politics: Report” William A. Schambra and Thomas West. Heritage.org/Political-Process. July 18, 2007. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. http://www.heritage.org/political-process/report/the-progressive-movement-and-the-transformation-american-politics
[iii] “The Electoral College.” FederalistCoalition.com. Retrieved from the Web May 6, 2017. https://federalistcoalition.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/THE-ELECTORAL-COLLEGE.mp4?_=3
[iv] “H.R. 893 A bill to protect, improve, and modernize the act of voting.” 115th Congress (2017-2018). Introduced in the House on February 2, 2017. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/893/text
[v] “How Big Is the U.S. Government Cybersecurity Problem?” SecurityScorecard.com Blog April 14, 2016. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. http://blog.securityscorecard.com/2016/04/14/big-us-government-cybersecurity-problem/;
“Opinion: TRUMP MUST RECOGNIZE HOW VULNERABLE THE U.S. IS TO CYBERATTACKS.” John McAfee. Newsweek. January 2, 2017. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. http://www.newsweek.com/trump-needs-recognize-us-extreme-vulnerability-cybersecurity-537779;
“U.S. Government Computers Still Not Safe From Cyber Attacks.” Adam Kredo. FreeBeacon.com. February 21, 2017. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. http://freebeacon.com/national-security/u-s-government-computers-still-not-safe-cyber-attacks/; and
“Most Federal Agencies Remain Vulnerable to Cyberattack.” Steve King. Lifezette.com. Updated May 3, 2017. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. http://www.lifezette.com/polizette/most-federal-agencies-remain-vulnerable-to-cyber-attack/
[vi] “Russia and its influence on the presidential election.” Lauren Carroll. Politifact. December 1, 2016. Retrieved from the Web May 7, 2017. http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2016/dec/01/russia-and-its-influence-presidential-election/;
“Russian hacking and the 2016 election: What you need to know.” Jeremy Diamond. CNN.com. December 16, 2016. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. http://www.cnn.com/2016/12/12/politics/russian-hack-donald-trump-2016-election/;
“How Russia ‘Hacked’ Us In 2016 [And What We Did Wrong].” Harold Stark. Forbes. January 24, 2017. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. https://www.forbes.com/sites/haroldstark/2017/01/24/how-russia-hacked-the-election/#40a64ed14a9f; and
“A Beginner’s Guide to the Trump/Russia Controversy.” David A. French (@DavidAFrench). National Review. March 31, 2017. Retrieved from the Web May 4, 2017. http://www.nationalreview.com/article/446339/donald-trump-russia-2016-election-controversy-explained