This is your choice. Left wing big government, or right wing big government. The days of the small government conservative are dead. These views used to have a home in the Republican Party. The GOP now sees the Federal Government as a way to browbeat state and local government into submission. I’ll save the latest example for last. Let’s look at a few current ones first.
Sanctuary Cities, background checks, and big government.
In 1994 the Brady Bill was signed into law by President Clinton. It required, among other things, a background check for gun purchases. However, the Federal Government didn’t put a federal agency in charge of these checks.
This lead to the lawsuit Printz vs. United States. Local law enforcement had been tasked with doing the background checks. Some sheriffs objected. Jay Printz, a Montana sherriff, sued and won. In the ruling, conservative Justice Scalia wrote the following.
The federal government may neither issue directives requiring the States to address particular problems, nor command the States’ officers, or those of their political subdivisions, to administer or enforce a federal regulatory program.
Today, the Federal Government regularly demands that local governments hold suspects on immigration charges. Some cities and states have refused to cooperate. These are known as Sanctuary Cities.
Citing the above ruling, one can easily see the problem. The federal government cannot compel a state to enforce a federal regulatory program. However, the Trump Administration started withholding federal funds from sanctuary jurisdictions. The following locations have sued and won.
- Portland and Seattle
- New York City, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Washington
- Additionally, the Trump Administration sued California and lost.
The Republican Party used to embrace this basic principle of small government. Unfortunately, they are now at war with it. Rudy Giuliani is an outspoken opponent of sanctuary cities. Here he is in 1996 talking about an executive order he signed to keep NYC a sanctuary city.
Republicans have a long history of fighting gun registries. The 2nd Amendment gives us the right to own a gun. Therefore, they argue, a gun registry infringes on those rights. Moreover, they have even pushed legislation for a 15 year prison sentence for any federal official who tries to compile one.
The same Constitution also gives us our right to vote. However, this requires states to have a voter registration list. Republicans support this. Additionally, they want laws that require voters to produce photo I.D. when voting. They say this is to make sure the wrong people don’t get a ballot in their hands. No such concern apparently for the wrong people getting a gun in their hands. Small government goes out the window with the fear of losing an election.
Transgender bathrooms. The transfer of big government.
Republicans get irate when government tries to force businesses to provide services to gay customers. This fear of big government quickly dies when a transgender person needs to use the bathroom. The government agent was a threat when he was in the kitchen at the bakery. Suddenly, the Republicans want that agent stationed at the bathroom door checking genitalia on the way in.
These are a few examples of how the Republican Party is abandoning all pretense of a belief in small government. Moreover, the GOP spent the first 4 years of the Obama Administration lamenting record budgets. Alas, they have shattered his records. President Trump has proposed a $4.75 trillion budget for 2020.
In light of all of these examples, the most current one seems minor. It isn’t. The marketing of the intrusion is slick. Consider this headline from FOX News.
House Dems overwhelmingly reject motion to condemn illegal immigrant voting
Above all else, that will rattle the base. Subsequently, you will hear the outrage from your friends on the right. “See? Democrats want illegal aliens voting for them!”. Additionally, they would likely criticize me for not supporting this. What could I possibly find to oppose here? Go to the 3rd paragraph of the article.
Federal law already prohibits non-citizens from voting in elections for federal office. But the GOP motion referenced how San Francisco is allowing non-citizens, including illegal immigrants, to register to vote in school board elections.
Since federal law already prohibits illegal aliens from voting in federal elections, what need is there for more federal legislation? This is your friendly, small government GOP attempting to use the U.S. Congress to influence city school board elections in San Francisco.
This trend will continue for as long as the party stoops and bows to President Trump. Fiscal conservatism is dead. Big government right wing politics rule the day. Leaving us to ask the age old question. If the money that pays for your family leave when your son is born is charged to the tax bill of your grandson, is it still redistribution of wealth?