Montana - ‘Don’t Tread on Me’
» Montana Republicans to the Federal Government: ‘Don’t Tread on Me’ - AWR Hawkins:
Although last year’s midterm elections dealt Democrats a devastating blow at the federal level, what has liberals reeling now are the ramifications of power Republicans accumulated on the state level as well. Just consider their reaction to the union-adjusting policies of the newly elected governors in Ohio and Wisconsin (John Kasich and Scott Walker), and it’s evident that the outcome of November 2010 continues to be more than many Democrats can handle.
Yet the key battleground for a clash between the political status quo, which is always good for Democrats, and an active conservatism, which is always good for liberty, looks like it may take place hundreds of miles away from either Kasich or Walker, in a state that still symbolizes the strength and courage of the Wild West: namely, Montana.
Yes, it’s there that the battleaxe of Tea Party conservatism is crashing down with a boom on liberalism, progressivism, and every other “ism” that threatens to the limit the intrinsic (and inalienable) rights of the citizens in that state.
The Associated Press (AP) recently bemoaned the fact that Republicans emerged from the November 2010 elections with a “supermajority in the Montana House.” Which means they now control both chambers in that state. This also means that words like “nullification,” phrases like “states’ rights,” and theories like Thomas Jefferson’s description of the union of states as a “compact” are not only spoken in the legislative halls, they are shouted from the rooftops. (Jefferson’s view on the nature of the union, best set forth in his “Kentucky Resolutions,” is that states do not look to the federal government for the cause of their existence rather the federal government exists because the states chose to delegate certain powers to it.)
In Montana, they are trying to right the ship by restoring a constitutional balance of powers that constrains the federal government’s habit of infringing on the rights of the people.
What the newly elected Republicans in Montana are saying is that they know their constitutional options, and that those options haven’t been recognized or respected by the federal government for some time now.
It appears that such options, embodied in the rights “reserved to the States respectively,” are about to be re-asserted one by one, as they re-enter the political lexicon. And what’s bothering the left is the fact that such a re-assertion flips their worldview on its head, because it reserves powers to the people that the federal government cannot control.
I guess you could say Montana is sending a strong message to the federal government, and that message is “Don’t Tread on Me.”