In 2010, Paul Gosar was elected to represent Arizona’s 1st congressional district in the U.S. Congress. With the help of a much-publicized endorsement from Sarah Palin, he rode to victory on the wave of resentment against Washington that fueled what came to be called the tea-party movement. Given this background, I naturally paid attention when I ran across a YouTube video in which Gosar told a gathering of conservative activists, “If all you’re going to do is stand just for the Constitution and nothing less, you will lose. … Because not everybody believes in the Constitution.” (For a written report on his remarks, click here.)
In 2010, Gosar ran against an incumbent whose sins included support for Obamacare. Since then, of course, the view that key provisions of Obamacare are unconstitutional has become a focal point of opposition to the plan. In the recent U.S. Supreme Court action on the matter, Chief Justice John Roberts (a G.W. Bush appointee) expressed the opinion of a majority of the Court that this view is, in fact, correct. But the Court then proceeded to fabricate the irrational doctrine that an enforcement mechanism that is otherwise beyond the bounds of constitutionality can nonetheless be implemented as a tax, because Congress’ taxing power inherently escapes constitutional limitations. Since the power to tax is the power to destroy, this leaves the U.S. government free to destroy at will the livelihood of America’s inhabitants. In place of a constitutional regime based on the consent of the people, we are thrown back to the rule of fearsomely unlimited government power, implemented by way of taxes judicially morphed into unconstrained instruments of economic terrorism.
Proponents of constitutional government (which ought properly to include everyone who has ever taken an oath to uphold the U.S. Constitution) are rightly outraged at what they accurately describe as an assault on the very concept of constitutional government. The U.S. Supreme Court justices who are party to this assault act in clear violation of their sworn duty to uphold the Constitution. This must be seen in conjunction with the Court’s move (Arizona v. United States) just previous to the Obamacare decision, to strip from the state governments their right and duty to defend their citizens from ongoing invasion. The Court’s activities invite one to conclude that the branch of government intended, by its independence and rational discipline, to be the guardian of the Constitution, has instead become a clear and present danger to its survival.
Given the role that opposition to Obamacare played in his election to Congress, Rep. Gosar must be aware that a key objection to the plan involves its derogation of constitutional self-government. Moreover, Arizona’s immigration law was the particular subject of the Supreme Court’s emasculation of the sovereign powers the U.S. Constitution explicitly reserves to the states. Finally, the tea-party voters he exploited to win office include a great majority that is deeply committed to defending the Constitution. Despite all this, we find Rep. Gosar advocating the view that most people don’t believe in the Constitution, in a gathering of the very people whose votes contributed to the electoral majority that sent him to Washington. Obviously, in his eyes, the constituents he’s supposed to represent don’t count for much.
Gosar obviously doesn’t see or speak for them. His record since being elected suggests that he has mostly been susceptible to the arm-twisting influence of the GOP leadership. John Boehner and his colleagues have been all too willing to surrender the constitutional prerogatives of the U.S. House of Representatives. On issues like the president’s role in raising the debt ceiling, or the institution of a House/Senate supercommittee on budget legislation, they have surrendered the initiative on “all bills for raising revenue,” which the U.S. Constitution explicitly reserves to the House. Barely two years into his official Washington sojourn, Gosar already speaks as a representative of the GOP’s elitist faction leadership. You would think he swore an oath of allegiance to the party line, rather than the oath he, in fact, swore to uphold the U.S. Constitution.
Apparently, not unlike the apparatchiks in the old Soviet Communist Party, his allegiance is to party bosses, not to the people whose votes elected him – or to the Constitution that guarantees their power of election. His job now is to do to his constituents what the GOP leadership has apparently done to him, i.e., bring them into line with the elitist faction’s goal of abandoning the Constitution. What’s especially galling is the lying assertion that most Americans are clamoring to see the Constitution on the ash heap. I guess they can’t wait for their betters to get on with the job of forcing them to be free – free of responsibility and moral conscience, free to be dependent on a totalitarian government of, by and for the elites, the sub-elites and the sub-sub elites as they scrabble for position in the hierarchy of enslaving twin-Party despotism.
Under the empire of the despotic sultans of old, everyone was considered a slave, though some slaves were vastly more privileged than others. Behind the whited sepulcher façade of rigged elections, is this the brave new world the elitist faction powers plan for the once-free people of the United States? I raise the question because Paul Gosar’s blithe abandonment of his oath of office is most important for what it tells us about the party influences that have apparently turned his head. It should give pause to those who are willing to be gulled into replacing the evil of Obama’s open attack on constitutional government with the at least equally dangerous evil of GOP charlatans who win votes by promising to fight for constitutional liberty, but who end up working to brainwash the very people who elected them into seeing the fight as a losing battle.
Since Ronald Reagan left office, conservatives have credulously spent their energy winning victory after victory for people much like Paul Gosar. How many more such victorious election seasons will it take until our Constitution is finally, irretrievably lost? Not even one, I think, not even one.