America's founders drafted the principles upon which our country was established. They knew back then what would make it great and strong. And I believe their wisdom can still lead us, especially during this critical election.
If our founders were alive today, for whom would they vote? I believe they gave us clues in their statements and beliefs for their five criteria for electing the right people:
1. First, all of America's founders would indeed vote, and encourage others to.
Thomas Jefferson, principal author of the Declaration of Independence and our third president, said, "[S]hould things go wrong at any time, the people will set them to rights by the peaceable exercise of their elective rights.”
Alexander Hamilton, chief of staff to Gen. George Washington, one of the greatest advocates of the U.S. Constitution, and founder of our nation's financial system, wrote: "A share in the sovereignty of the state, which is exercised by the citizens at large, in voting at elections is one of the most important rights of the subject, and in a republic ought to stand foremost in the estimation of the law.”
2. Our founders would vote for candidates who believed in decreasing government power, regulation and overreach, while increasing power to "We the people.”
Thomas Jefferson said in 1791: "I consider the foundation of the Constitution as laid on this ground that 'all powers not delegated to the United States, by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states or to the people.' To take a single step beyond the boundaries thus specially drawn around the powers of Congress, is to take possession of a boundless field of power, not longer susceptible of any definition.”
James Madison, our fourth president and one is called the "Father of the Bill of Rights,” similarly said in 1788: "The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite.”
As for the people, George Mason, who led Virginia patriots during the American Revolution, influenced Thomas Jefferson's Declaration of Independence with his idea of inalienable rights, and was a delegate to the U.S. Constitutional Convention, said back in 1775: "In all our associations; in all our agreements let us never lose sight of this fundamental maxim – that all power was originally lodged in, and consequently is derived from, the people. We should wear it as a breastplate, and buckle it on as our armor.”
3. Our founders would vote for candidates who believed in decreasing federal spending and debt, as well entitlements and tax burdens on citizens.
George Washington wrote in 1799: "To contract new debts is not the way to pay for old ones."
To summarize, Thomas Jefferson spoke for most founders when he said in the beginning of his presidency in 1801: "A wise and frugal government, which shall leave men free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned – this is the sum of good government.”
Jefferson also wrote in 1816: "This is the tendency of all human governments. A departure from principle becomes a precedent for a second; that second for a third; and so on, till the bulk of society is reduced to mere automatons of misery, to have no sensibilities left but for sinning and suffering. … And the fore horse of this frightful team is public debt. Taxation follows that, and in its train wretchedness and oppression."
Regarding entitlements, Benjamin Franklin said, "I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion of the means. I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. In my youth I traveled much, and I observed in different countries, that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”
4. America's founders would vote for candidates who stand up for preserving the original intent of the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights.
Charles Carroll, signer of the Declaration of Independence, said in 1826: "I do hereby recommend to the present and future generations the principles of that important document as the best earthly inheritance their ancestors could bequeath to them.”
Daniel Webster encouraged, "Hold on, my friends, to the Constitution and to the Republic for which it stands. Miracles do not cluster, and what has happened once in 6,000 years, may not happen again. Hold on to the Constitution, because if the American Constitution should fail, there will be anarchy throughout the world.”
George Washington summarized, "The Constitution is the guide which I will never abandon.”
5. America's founders would vote for candidates with good character and faith in God.
Samuel Adams, organizer of the Boston Tea Party and signer the U.S. Declaration of Independence, wrote: "Nothing is more essential to the establishment of manners in a State than that all persons employed in places of power and trust be men of unexceptionable characters. The public cannot be too curious concerning the character of public men.”
John Jay, the first chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court and second governor of New York, wrote: "Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty, as well as the privilege and interest of our Christian nation, to select and prefer Christians for their rulers.”
William Paterson, a signer of the U.S. Constitution, associate justice of the United States Supreme Court, and second governor of New Jersey, wrote: "When the righteous rule, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan.”
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It is because of those five criteria from America's founders that my wife, Gena, and I are both Republican and conservative, and endorse and vote for those who are the same. Though we know many Independent and even Libertarian voters who believe and vote as we do, we believe conservative Republicans best represent our founders' wisdom and solutions to making and keeping America great.
Now that we know our founders' views, Wallbuilders gives us additional links for discovering where specific candidates in your county and state stand upon those five criteria above.
Click on the organizations' links to get more information:
- American Family Association: Voter Resources
- Christian Coalition: Voter Guides
- Eagle Forum: Election Central
- Family Research Council: Voting Records
- Focus on the Family: CitizenLink
- National Right to Life Committee: Voting Records
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Click here to track federal legislation and to find out how your Congressman and Senators are voting.
Sites like On The Issues and iVoteValues also provide a wealth of non-partisan information on voting and candidates (including biographies, issue positions, voting records, campaign finances and interest group ratings). For instructions on viewing candidates' interest group ratings, commonly called "Scorecards,” click here.
Of course, you can always access voter information for your state by using a search engine (i.e., Google, Bing, or Yahoo) and type in "voter guide” or "voter information” along with key words like "Republican,” "conservative” or "pro-family” and the name of your state or candidates.
There is no doubt that this Tuesday, Nov. 6, holds one of the most important elections of our lifetime – there is so much on the line. That is why I encourage Americans everywhere to get out of the political bleachers and onto the battlefield. It's time for the black-belt patriots to stand up for the Constitution and Bill of Rights through their vote.
I couldn't state it any better than a recent poem I received, "Twas the Night Before the Election”:
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'Twas the night before the electionAnd all through the townTempers were flaringEmotions all up and down!
I, in my bathrobeWith a dog in my lapHad cut off the TVTired of political crap.
When all of a suddenThere arose such a noiseI peaked out of my windowSaw the Democrats and their boys
They had come for my walletThey wanted my payTo give to the othersWho had not worked a day
They snatched up my moneyAnd quick as a winkJumped back on their bandwagonAs I gagged from the political stink
They then rallied their henchmenWho were pulling their cartI could tell they were outTo tear my country apart
'On Pelosi, on Shumer!On Feinstein and 'Pocahontas'!On Soros, On Sanders!They screamed for more progressives!
They took off for their swampAnd as they flew out of sightLaughing at the conservative votersWho wouldn't stand up and fight
So I leave you to ponderOn this one final note –If you don't want socialism,GET OUT AND VOTE!!
(To learn more about America's founders' solutions to our modern-day problems, please read Chuck's New York Times bestseller, "Black Belt Patriotism.”)