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Federalists

The most important thing George H. W. Bush said is a lesson for today

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The most important thing George H. W. Bush said is a lesson for today

All Presidents have their share of great quotes. Speech writers are paid to spin words in a way that is catchy, intellectual, and understandable. President George H. W. Bush said many great things in his life, but none were as important for today as his perspective on government.

The only addition I would make is that true governance under the Constitution starts at the individual level. He may not have been the biggest proponent of limited-government federalism the way his predecessor was, but that doesn’t change the importance of his message.

“The heart of our government is not here in Washington, it’s in every county office, every town, every city across this land. Wherever the people of America are, that’s where the heart of our government is.”

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Federalists

What Stacey Abrams gets right about moving forward from the Georgia election

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What Stacey Abrams gets right about moving forward from the Georgia election

Democrat Stacey Abrams possesses some pretty radical political ideologies. I completely disagree with her far-leftist rhetoric or the agenda she hoped to bring to Georgia as governor. Republican Brian Kemp is the next governor, which even Abrams admits.

But she refuses to concede that she actually lose the election. She’s clear that Kemp is the governor-elect, but she falls just short of saying that his victory is illegitimate.

That’s all political theater. Here’s what she gets right. Georgia and many states need to clean up their election practices. Laws should be passed. Other laws should be removed. Ballot access for American citizens must be protected and the process must be made as easy as possible without jeopardizing accuracy or opening the doors to fraud.

Most importantly, this must be done through a combination of the legal system and the state legislature. At no point should she or anyone else try to turn this into a federal issue.

People on both sides of the political aisle seem to be leaning towards fixing election problems at the national level. This would be a huge mistake. The states must clean their own houses. The residents of the states must be the catalyst. Keep DC out of it.

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Federalists

Be careful about calling for more national election laws

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Be careful about calling for more national election laws

We’re starting to hear rumblings, mostly from Republicans, calling for national standardization of elections. It’s understandable that people are frustrated by what’s happening in Florida. Arizona and Georgia also have some questionable happenings. But it’s imperative as conservatives that we allow the states to fix the problems no matter how bad they may seem.

The biggest reason: the more the federal government gets involved in just about anything, the easier it will be for voter fraud, counting mishaps, and election official corruption to occur. Take, for example, calls ringing out again for national voter ID. Would it make it harder for non-citizens to vote? Perhaps. But it also runs the risk of catastrophic failure when we centralize and/or digitize the voting system itself. Not only will all of our eggs be in one basket that becomes a single point of failure, but it also slows the process of adjusting against threats. Sophisticated vote manipulators in or out of the country would love nothing more than a federalized voting system.

Taking away the states’ responsibility to administer their voting protocols takes away their accountability as well. Calls for centralization of nearly every other component of administration, from education to the environment to healthcare, has resulted in horrific results that greatly overshadowed the localized problems they were intended to fix.

Some states are having major problems with elections. These states must fix their problems. When the federal government gets involved in sweeping changes that force solutions for isolated cases on the rest of the country, more problems arise. The benefits are greatly outweighed by the detriments.

Broward County Election Supervisor Brenda Snipes is incompetent, corrupt, or both. She needs to be replaced and the voting process in Florida needs to be fixed. Let Broward County and Florida replace her and fix their voting process. It may be hard to have faith in the county and state, but do we really have more faith in Washington DC? Should we be calling for more centralized voting laws and protocols because of a few persons’ gross negligence?

No.

It’s frustrating when local officials can affect national elections, but that’s why people can vote them out and force reforms. Where it’s broken, let those states fix it. Bringing in a DC solution will give us DC results, and that’s almost never a good thing.

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Federalists

Bipartisanship has two major downsides

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Bipartisanship has two major downsides

The GOP losing control of the House of Representatives completely changes the course Washington DC will take over the next two years or more. For whatever reason, most Americans don’t seem to understand the repercussions. Most know this means the Democrats can start doing more things against President Trump even if they don’t quite understand the power of subpoena. They know this will slow down the President’s agenda, but probably don’t understand the degree of deadlock this creates.

Democrats won’t be able to get legislation through because of the Senate, and even if they could they’d be blocked by veto. Republicans can’t get any legislation through because of the House. Anything that is not bipartisan such as infrastructure will not even be attempted for at least two years. Since there are very few possible pieces of legislation that can be considered bipartisan, we can expect very little to be done.

That’s the good news.

There shouldn’t be much done. That’s how DC is supposed to operate. It’s supposed to be slow and methodical. The founders envisioned a federal government that could basically only push forward legislation that both sides of the political aisle agreed to, at least in part. Remember, the didn’t like a party system and they definitely didn’t want a two-party system, but that’s how our government has evolved. Perhaps it was inevitable for two parties to split power incessantly, but the founders hoped we would avoid such a mess.

While it’s good for things to move slowly in DC, there are two big problems with it and we’re about to face both of them. The first can best be described as half-measures. The solution to a problem that can get bipartisan support is almost always loaded with political backscratching. One of the reasons the bureaucracy is so big is because politicians have been packing things into their bills for decades. It’s like a bribe – “We’ll include a sugar subsidy in the bill in exchange for your support of our tax hike, Mr. Florida Senator.”

The second problem is the tendency for bipartisan projects to be gargantuan and expensive. The aforementioned infrastructure fix is the perfect example. President Trump, Senators Schumer and McConnell, and possible future Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi have all discussed infrastructure at one point or another in the past couple of years. Rumors and leaks have indicated such a bill would cost over a trillion dollars. There’s also much talk about attempting a public-private partnership to make it work.

As we face a trillion dollar deficit next year, any thought of spending more money is ludicrous. However, it’s appealing to politicians on both sides because it would create jobs and represents a tangible benefit people can actually experience in their daily lives. It’s not a question of whether both sides can come together on it. The only question is how they’ll divide up credit for it.

In the end, taxpayers will feel the pain. The budget deficit will rise. The national debt will continue to grow at an untenable pace. All the while, Mr. President and Madam Speaker will be giving each other fist bumps.

We don’t need bipartisanship. We need nonpartisanship. The real solutions America needs all point towards limiting government, cutting spending, and pushing more power to the state, local, and individual levels.

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