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Poll: 64% of Republicans would leave GOP for new third party founded by Trump

Most Republicans would quit the GOP and join a hypothetical third party started by former President Donald Trump, a new Hill-HarrisX poll finds.

According to the survey, 64% of registered Republicans said they would join a new political party if Trump founded one. No less than 32% said they would be “very likely” to join a Trump party.

Just 36% of Republicans opposed leaving the GOP for a party founded by Trump.

But it’s not just Republicans who could be swayed to a third-party movement. The survey found 28% of self-identified independents and 15% of Democrats said they would be likely to join a Trump party.

Overall, 37% of voters said if Trump starts a new political party, they’d be likely to join.

Since leaving the presidency, Trump has reportedly floated the idea of forming a “Patriot Party” to galvanize his remaining supporters into a movement that could challenge the two-party dominance of American politics.

In his farewell address, Trump said that the movement that put him in the White House four years ago was “only just beginning.”

“As I prepare to hand power over to a new administration at noon on Wednesday, I want you to know that the movement we started is only just beginning,” he said. “There’s never been anything like it. The belief that a nation must serve its citizens will not dwindle but instead only grow stronger by the day. As long as the American people hold in their hearts deep and devoted love of country, then there is nothing this nation cannot achieve.”

In his final speech as president at Joint Base Andrews, Trump promised, “We will be back in some form.”

Though support for Trump to run for president again in 2024 has dropped 20 points since December, according to a survey from Echelon Insights, the Hill-HarrisX poll suggests Trump still holds large sway with many Republican voters.

“These numbers show that despite the Capitol riots Trump remains a political force to be reckoned with. He benefits from a diverse base of support making up over a third of voters, voters who are attracted to him on a number of issues that are yet to be properly addressed by, and coopted by, Democratic and Republican elites,” Dritan Nesho, CEO and chief pollster at HarrisX, told Hill.TV.

“If Trump were to split from the GOP and create his own party, polling suggests he might well create the second largest political party in the country, knocking the GOP down to third place,” Nesho added.

The Hill-HarrisX poll was an online survey of 945 registered voters with 340 respondents self-identifying as Republicans. It has a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points.

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A Terrifying New Bill In Congress Would Eliminate The Possibility Of Turning America Around In 2024, 2028 Or Ever Again

This article was originally published by Michael Snyder at The End of the American Dream.

Have you heard about H.R. 1?  If not, I would urge you to read the text of the bill immediately.  It is called the “For The People Act”, and you can find it right here.

The text of this bill specifically states that Congress has the “ultimate supervisory power over federal elections”, but of course anyone that is familiar with what the U.S. Constitution actually says knows that this is not true.  The states are supposed to have final authority over their own election laws, and H.R. 1 is a blatant attempt to usurp that authority.  Unfortunately, in the aftermath of the riot at the U.S. Capitol, there are very few politicians in Washington that still have a willingness to stand up for election integrity.  H.R. 1 is almost certainly going to get through the House of Representatives, and it has a really good chance of getting through the Senate as well.

If this legislation is approved, it will fundamentally change the nature of our federal elections forever.

And not in a good way.

I do not think that Tucker Carlson was exaggerating by very much at all when he warned that “Democrats will control the federal government for decades” if H.R. 1 becomes law…

Democrats will control the federal government for decades or more if a sweeping new proposal touted as comprehensive government reform becomes law, Tucker Carlson said on Monday.

Carlson warned of the many dangers of “H.R. 1.,” the “For The People Act,” a nearly 800-page bill sponsored by Maryland Democrat John Sarbanes of Baltimore.

In essence, this bill would make elections all over the country just like elections in California.

If that statement sounds terrifying to you, that is because it is terrifying.

Democrats introduced the same bill last year, but it died in the Republican-controlled Senate.

But now Democrats control the Senate, and they just need a handful of Senate Republicans to go along with them so that they can overcome any potential filibuster.  The following comes from Zero Hedge

In the House, Democrats have revived sweeping election reform legislation that died in the Senate during the previous session, perhaps hoping they can browbeat enough Republicans into going along with them. If that happens, the “Grand Old Party” of Abraham Lincoln might as well disband, because Republicans would never have any hope of regaining a congressional majority or controlling the White House under the rules that HR 1 would put in place.

Although the Constitution explicitly places state legislatures in charge of managing federal elections, HR 1 seeks to use the power of the purse to bludgeon the states into conforming to a centralized system pioneered in California and other deep-blue states. Congress can’t technically compel the states to change their voting laws, but seasoned politicians know that the states have become dependent on federal money to run their elections, and can’t afford to pick up the tab themselves.

Inevitably, there would probably be a few red states that would attempt to defy this new law, but the threat of reduced federal funding would force most red states to submit to the new mandates.

So exactly why are many Republicans so deeply alarmed by this bill?

Well, the good people over at Pundit Press have put together a list of some of the things that this new law would do…

1) Internet-only registration with electronic signature submission.

2) Banning the requirement to provide a full SSN for voter registration.

3) Nationwide ‘Motor Voter’ registration.

4) 16 year olds required to be registered to vote.

5) Nationwide same-day registration.

6) Grants ($25M) for using minors in election activities.

7) More children voters.

8) Prohibiting attempts to clean voter rolls of non-residents.

9) Murderers and rapists can vote.

10) Mandatory early voting.

11) THE BIG ONE – NATIONWIDE VOTE BY MAIL, BAN ON BALLOT PROTECTION MEASURES, LEGALIZED LIMITLESS BALLOT HARVESTING.

If you are a Republican and you live in a state that already allows “ballot harvesting”, then you probably already know how devastatingly effective it is.

When ballot harvesting is legalized without any limitations, it becomes exceedingly difficult for Republicans to win except for in the most conservative areas.  During one of his recent shows, Tucker Carlson explained why

“Under H.R. 1, [people] could freely go house to house and apartment to apartment collecting unknown thousands of ballots and then dump them all in a ballot dropbox. No one would have any idea if those ballots had been tampered with at any point along the way or would there be any way to prove it if they had been tampered with,” he continued.

Not only that, but H.R. 1 would also reportedly allow people “to print out their ballots at home”

For example, HR 1 would allow ballot harvesting on steroids. Voters would — for the first time — have the ability to print out their ballots at home, creating a gaping security hole that could easily be exploited by either domestic or foreign interests. The legislation also allows third parties to collect ballots from an unlimited number of absentee voters and submit them through ballot drop boxes, dramatically increasing the risk that vulnerable Americans could be bullied, bribed, or blackmailed for their votes without the protection of election workers.

Can you imagine what would happen if we actually allowed tens of millions of people all over the country to print out their own ballots?

It would be utter madness, and we would never have a legitimate election ever again.

Of course, everything in this nearly 800-page bill is designed to help Democrats, and their plan all along has been to set the stage for a one-party rule for the foreseeable future.

And that is what this “trial” in the Senate is all about too.  They want to destroy Donald Trump and the movement that he started so that nobody like him can ever come along again.

Sadly, it doesn’t even look like it will be a fair trial.  The Democrat that will be presiding over the trial is also one of the jurors, and we already know how he is going to vote.

The key for the Democrats will be to find 17 Republicans in the Senate that also want to convict Trump so that they can get to the magic number of 67.

I believe that if 67 votes can be confirmed, Mitch McConnell and other prominent Republicans will pull the trigger and will vote to keep Trump from ever running for office again.

But if they can’t find 67 votes to convict, I believe that Mitch McConnell and his close allies will back off.

There will be high drama in D.C. in the coming days, and the outcome of this trial in the Senate has enormous implications for our future.

Of course even if Trump is acquitted and he decides to run again in 2024, he definitely will not win if H.R. 1 becomes law.

This bill has the potential to change everything, and so I would encourage all of you to get information about this insidious legislation out to everyone that you know.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream, and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial, or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter, and Parler, and anyway that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

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CNN’s Jim Acosta on Trump’s possible future plans: ‘I do think Trump is going to lead at least a fringe movement in this country’

CNN’s Jim Acosta says that former President Donald Trump will likely continue to lead a movement across the United States despite no longer being commander in chief.

What are the details?

During a Sunday appearance on CNN‘s “Reliable Sources,” Acosta told Brian Stelter that he believes the former president’s quietude since leaving the White House is only transitory and signifies more to come.

“I think it is temporary,” he told Stelter, according to a report from the network. “The populist political forces that sent Trump to the White House ‘have the potential to come back in the days to come.'”

“I do think Trump is going to lead at least a fringe movement in this country,” Acosta added.

Elsewhere during the discussion, Acosta warned that the former president — who he referred to as “lord of the lies” — should not yet be counted out.

“While he’s still licking his wounds down in Mar-a-Lago, he poses a threat to this country,” Acosta explained. “This is not a time to put away our fact-checkers in some sort of box on a shelf. They’re going to be needed to fact-check this movement. Trump may be going away, but Trumpism is not.”

Trump’s final days in office

Acosta, who heavily covered the Trump White House during the former president’s administration, said that Trump spent his final days in office alone.

The outlet reported that the former president “greeted a small crowd of about 200 at Joint Base Andrews before he boarded Air Force One with family and the press, including Acosta.”

“It was sort of a sad and pathetic sight,” Acosta told Stelter. “I’ve never see him this alone the entire time he was at the level of presidential politics.”

Of the former president’s final days, Acosta said, “Essentially what we saw was the undoing of the Trump presidency. What we saw the president build over the course of four or five years out on the campaign trail and over at the White House just sort of unraveled at the end.”

What else?

Last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Trump is looking to form his own political party, dubbed “The Patriot Party.”

Having reportedly spoken to confidantes and aides preceding his White House departure, Trump is said to believe that many Republicans abandoned him following the early January attack on the U.S. Capitol.

“Trump discussed the matter with several aides and other people close to him last week,” the outlet reported. “The president said he would want to call the new party the ‘Patriot Party,’ the people said.”

In a Tuesday farewell video, Trump said that his movement is “only just beginning.”

“As I prepare to hand power over to a new administration at noon on Wednesday, I want you to know that the movement we started is only just beginning,” he said. “There’s never been anything like it. The belief that a nation must serve its citizens will not dwindle but instead only grow stronger by the day. As long as the American people hold in their hearts deep and devoted love of country, then there is nothing this nation cannot achieve.”

In his final speech as president, Trump at Joint Base Andrews said, “We will be back in some form.”

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The Election Has Already Been Hijacked and the Winner Decided: ‘We the People’ Lose

This article was originally published by John W. Whitehead at The Rutherford Institute.

“Free election of masters does not abolish the masters or the slaves.” ? Herbert Marcuse

Republicans and Democrats alike fear that the other party will attempt to hijack this election.

President Trump is convinced that mail-in ballots are a scam except in Florida, where it’s safe to vote by mail because of its “great Republican governor.”

The FBI is worried about foreign hackers continuing to target and exploit vulnerabilities in the nation’s electoral system, sowing distrust about the parties, the process, and the outcome.

I, on the other hand, am not overly worried: after all, the voting booths have already been hijacked by a political elite comprised of Republicans and Democrats who are determined to retain power at all costs.

The outcome is a foregone conclusion: the Deep State will win and “we the people” will lose.

The damage has already been done.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which has been tasked with helping to “secure” the elections and protect the nation against cyberattacks, is not exactly an agency known for its adherence to freedom principles.

After all, this is the agency largely responsible for turning the American republic into a police state. Since its creation, the DHS has ushered in the domestic use of surveillance drones, expanded the reach of fusion centers, stockpiled an alarming amount of ammunition (including hollow-point bullets), urged Americans to become snitches through a “see something, say something” campaign, overseen the fumbling antics of TSA agents everywhere, militarized the nation’s police, spied on activists and veterans, distributed license plate readers and cell phone trackers to law enforcement agencies, contracted to build detention camps, carried out military drills and lockdowns in American cities, conducted virtual strip searches of airline passengers, established Constitution-free border zones, funded city-wide surveillance cameras, and undermined the Fourth Amendment at every turn.

So, no, I’m not losing a night’s sleep over the thought that this election might by any more rigged than it already is.

And I’m not holding my breath in the hopes that the winner of this year’s popularity contest will save us from government surveillance, weaponized drones, militarized police, endless wars, SWAT team raids, asset forfeiture schemes, overcriminalization, profit-driven private prisons, graft, and corruption, or any of the other evils that masquerade as official government business these days.

You see, after years of trying to wake Americans up to the reality that there is no political savior who will save us from the police state, I’ve come to realize that Americans want to engage in the reassurance ritual of voting.

They want to believe the fantasy that politics matter.

They want to be persuaded that there’s a difference between the Republicans and Democrats (there’s not).

Some will swear that Donald Trump has been an improvement on Barack Obama (he is not).

Others are convinced that Joe Biden’s values are different from Donald Trump’s (with both of them, money talks).

Most of all, voters want to buy into the fantasy that when they elect a president, they’re getting someone who truly represents the citizenry rather than the Deep State (in fact, in the oligarchy that is the American police state, an elite group of wealthy donors is calling the shots in cooperation with a political elite).

The sad truth is that it doesn’t matter who wins the White House because they all work for the same boss: Corporate America. Understanding this, many corporations hedge their bets on who will win the White House by splitting their donations between Democratic and Republican candidates.

Politics is a game, a joke, a hustle, a con, a distraction, a spectacle, a sport, and for many devout Americans, a religion. It is a political illusion aimed at persuading the citizenry that we are free, that our vote counts, and that we actually have some control over the government when in fact, we are prisoners of a Corporate Elite.

In other words, it’s a sophisticated ruse aimed at keeping us divided and fighting over two parties whose priorities, more often than not, are exactly the same so that we don’t join forces and do what the Declaration of Independence suggests, which is to throw the whole lot out and start over.

It’s no secret that both parties support endless war, engage in out-of-control spending, ignore the citizenry’s basic rights, have no respect for the rule of law, are bought and paid for by Big Business, care most about their own power, and have a long record of expanding government and shrinking liberty. Most of all, both parties enjoy an intimate, incestuous history with each other and with the moneyed elite that rule this country.

Despite the jabs the candidates volley at each other for the benefit of the cameras, they’re a relatively chummy bunch away from the spotlight. Moreover, despite Congress’ so-called political gridlock, our elected officials seem to have no trouble finding common ground when it’s time to collectively kowtow to the megacorporations, lobbyists, defense contractors, and other special interest groups to whom they have pledged their true allegiance.

So don’t be fooled by the smear campaigns and name-calling or drawn into their divide-and-conquer politics of hate. They’re just useful tactics that have been proven to engage voters and increase voter turnout while keeping the citizenry at each other’s throats.

It’s all a grand illusion.

It used to be that the cogs, wheels, and gear shifts in the government machinery worked to keep the republic running smoothly. However, without our fully realizing it, the mechanism has changed. Its purpose is no longer to keep our republic running smoothly. To the contrary, this particular contraption’s purpose is to keep the Deep State in power. Its various parts are already a corrupt part of the whole.

Just consider how insidious, incestuous, and beholden to the corporate elite the various “parts” of the mechanism have become.

Congress. Perhaps the most notorious offenders and most obvious culprits in the creation of the corporate-state, Congress has proven itself to be both inept and avaricious, oblivious champions of an authoritarian system that is systematically dismantling their constituents’ fundamental rights. Long before they’re elected, Congressmen are trained to dance to the tune of their wealthy benefactors, so much so that they spend two-thirds of their time in office raising money. As Reuters reports, “For many lawmakers, the daily routine in Washington involves fundraising as much as legislating. The culture of nonstop political campaigning shapes the rhythms of daily life in Congress, as well as the landscape around the Capitol. It also means that lawmakers often spend more time listening to the concerns of the wealthy than anyone else.”

The President. What Americans want in a president and what they need are two very different things. The making of a popular president is an exercise in branding, marketing, and creating alternate realities for the consumer—a.k.a., the citizenry—that allows them to buy into a fantasy about life in America that is utterly divorced from our increasingly grim reality. Take President Trump, for instance, who got elected by promising to drain the swamp in Washington DC. Instead of putting an end to the corruption, however, Trump has paved the way for lobbyists, corporations, the military-industrial complex, and the rest of the Deep State (also referred to as “The 7th Floor Group”) to feast on the carcass of the dying American republic. The lesson: to be a successful president, it doesn’t matter whether you keep your campaign promises, sell the American people to the highest bidder, or march in lockstep with the Corporate State as long as you keep telling people what they most want to hear.

The Supreme Court. The U.S. Supreme Court—once the last refuge of justice, the one governmental body really capable of rolling back the slowly emerging tyranny enveloping America—has instead become the champion of the American police state, absolving government and corporate officials of their crimes while relentlessly punishing the average American for exercising his or her rights. Like the rest of the government, the Court has routinely prioritized profit, security, and convenience over the basic rights of the citizenry. Indeed, law professor Erwin Chemerinsky makes a compelling case that the Supreme Court, whose “justices have overwhelmingly come from positions of privilege,” almost unerringly throughout its history sides with the wealthy, the privileged, and the powerful.

The Media. Of course, this triumvirate of total control would be completely ineffective without a propaganda machine provided by the world’s largest corporations. Besides shoveling drivel down our throats at every possible moment, the so-called news agencies which are supposed to act as bulwarks against government propaganda have instead become the mouthpieces of the state. The pundits which pollute our airwaves are at best court jesters and at worst propagandists for the false reality created by the American government. When you have internet and media giants such as Google, NBC Universal, News Corporation, Turner Broadcasting, Thomson Reuters, Comcast, Time Warner, Viacom, Public Radio International, and The Washington Post Company donating to political candidates, you no longer have an independent media—what we used to refer to as the “fourth estate”—that can be trusted to hold the government accountable.

The American People. “We the people” now belong to a permanent underclass in America. It doesn’t matter what you call us—chattel, slaves, worker bees, it’s all the same—what matters is that we are expected to march in lockstep with and submit to the will of the state in all matters, public and private. Unfortunately, through our complicity in matters large and small, we have allowed an out-of-control corporate-state apparatus to take over every element of American society.

We’re playing against a stacked deck.

The game is rigged, and “we the people” keep getting dealt the same losing hand. The people dealing the cards—the politicians, the corporations, the judges, the prosecutors, the police, the bureaucrats, the military, the media, etc.—have only one prevailing concern, and that is to maintain their power and control over the citizenry while milking us of our money and possessions.

It really doesn’t matter what you call them—Republicans, Democrats, the 1%, the elite, the controllers, the masterminds, the shadow government, the police state, the surveillance state, the military-industrial complex—so long as you understand that while they are dealing the cards, the deck will always be stacked in their favor.

As I make clear in my book, Battlefield America: The War on the American People, our failure to remain informed about what is taking place in our government, to know and exercise our rights, to vocally protest, to demand accountability on the part of our government representatives, and at a minimum to care about the plight of our fellow Americans has been our downfall.

Now we find ourselves once again caught up in the spectacle of another presidential election, and once again the majority of Americans are acting as if this election will make a difference and bring about change. As if the new boss will be different from the old boss.

When in doubt, just remember what the astute commentator George Carlin had to say about the matter:

The politicians are put there to give you the idea that you have freedom of choice. You don’t. You have no choice. You have owners. They own you. They own everything. They own all the important land. They own and control the corporations. They’ve long since bought and paid for the Senate, the Congress, the state houses, the city halls. They got the judges in their back pockets and they own all the big media companies, so they control just about all of the news and information you get to hear. They got you by the balls. They spend billions of dollars every year lobbying. Lobbying to get what they want. Well, we know what they want. They want more for themselves and less for everybody else, but I’ll tell you what they don’t want. They don’t want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that. That doesn’t help them. That’s against their interests. They want obedient workers. Obedient workers, people who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork…. It’s a big club and you ain’t in it. You and I are not in the big club. …The table is tilted, folks. The game is rigged and nobody seems to notice…. Nobody seems to care. That’s what the owners count on…. It’s called the American Dream, ’cause you have to be asleep to believe it.

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Democrats, Republicans, and the Constitution

In July 2017, after President Donald Trump had been in office for less than six months, Congressmen Al Green (D-Calif.) and Brad Sherman (D-Tex.) introduced in the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives an article of impeachment (H. Res. 438) against the president for “High Crimes and Misdemeanors.” Said Green, “I am introducing Articles of Impeachment to begin a long process to protect our country from abuse of power, obstruction of justice, and impulsive, ignorant incompetence.” The impeachment article concluded with the charge that “Donald John Trump has acted in a manner contrary to his trust as President and subversive of constitutional government.” Naturally, the article of impeachment went nowhere, since the Republicans controlled the House.

The Democrats regained control of the House in the 2018 election. On January 3, 2019 — the first day of the new 116th Congress — Sherman and Green reintroduced their article of impeachment. Later that day, freshman Democrat Rashida Tlaib of Michigan — who later said that the tenor of her language was just how people in Detroit talk — announced that Democrats would “impeach the ****.” Although House Speaker Nancy Pelosi initially sought to stifle calls by Democrats for Trump’s impeachment, by September she announced the beginning of a formal impeachment inquiry, citing Trump’s “breach of his constitutional responsibilities.”

On December 9, House Democrats unveiled two articles of impeachment (H.R.755) against President Trump for “abuse of power” and “obstruction of Congress.” Each article of impeachment concludes with the words, “Wherefore, President Trump, by such conduct, has demonstrated that he will remain a threat to the Constitution if allowed to remain in office.” On December 13, the House Judiciary Committee recommended that the House ratify two articles of impeachment against the president by a party-line vote of 23 to 17 on each article. The Committee released its official Report on the impeachment on December 16. The introduction concludes with the statement, “The Committee now transmits these articles of impeachment to the full House. By his actions, President Trump betrayed his office. His high crimes and misdemeanors undermine the Constitution.”

Trump became the third U.S. president to be impeached on December 18, 2019, after a mostly party-line vote in the House of 230-197 on the first article of impeachment and 229-198 on the second. On January 16, 2020, the House’s articles of impeachment were presented to the Senate. The Trial Memorandum of the House impeachment managers concluded, “President Trump has betrayed the American people and the ideals on which the Nation was founded. Unless he is removed from office, he will continue to endanger our national security, jeopardize the integrity of our elections, and undermine our core constitutional principles.” A trial was then held in the Senate from January 22 to February 5. All 100 senators affirmed an oath read by Chief Justice John Roberts: “Do you solemnly swear that in all things appertaining to the trial of the impeachment of Donald John Trump, president of the United States now pending, you will do impartial justice according to the Constitution and laws, so help you God?” Both sides had 24 hours over three days to make their case for or against impeachment, after which senators had 16 hours over two days to submit questions in writing to be read by the chief justice. That was followed by two hours of closing arguments by each side. Before the final vote, senators took to the Senate floor to make their individual cases for or against impeachment. On February 5, Trump was acquitted in his Senate trial by a party-line vote of 52-48 on the first article of impeachment and a near party-line vote of 53-47 on the second article of impeachment.

The Democrats

In the Democratic party platform, adopted at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in 2016, Democrats don’t have much to say about the Constitution. It is, in fact, mentioned only four times:

We will finally enshrine the rights of women in the Constitution by passing the Equal Rights Amendment (p. 17).

The Democratic Party will fulfill, honor, and strengthen to the highest extent possible the United States’ fundamental trust responsibility, grounded in the Constitution, treaties, and case law to American Indian and Alaska Native tribes (p. 19).

The people of Puerto Rico should determine their ultimate political status from permanent options that do not conflict with the Constitution, laws, and policies of the United States (p. 21).

[We] believe the Constitution protects not only the powerful, but also the disadvantaged and powerless (p. 23).

The Democratic Party platform also speaks of freedom of expression as “a fundamental constitutional principle” (p. 16), support for “a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Court’s decisions in Citizens United and Buckley v. Valeo” (p. 23), and “the constitutional principles of liberty and equality for all” (p. 23).

Democrats have never talked about the Constitution as much as they did during the impeachment hearings. Almost every Democrat who spoke about the need for Democrats to vote to impeach President Trump said that the president violated or betrayed the Constitution and that he had to vote in favor of impeachment because of the oath he took to support and defend the Constitution. On December 18, before the vote was taken in the House of Representatives on the articles of impeachment, members of Congress debated the articles prior to the vote. The comments of these House members are typical of the Democrats:

  • We in Congress, Article One, the legislative branch, must stand up and make clear to the American people and to all people, that this body still stands by the principles enshrined in the Constitution and defended by generations of Americans (Nancy Pelosi, Calif.).
  • President Trump has broken his oath of office. His conduct continues to undermine our Constitution and threaten our next election (Jerry Nadler, N.Y.).
  • I ask all of my colleagues to search their souls before casting their votes. I ask them all to stand up for our democracy, to stand up for our Constitution (James McGovern, Mass.).
  • The Constitution is the highest law of the land. The president breached and violated the Constitution of the United States of America.… The truth is that abusive power does violate the Constitution.… The Constitution must be preserved…. The bright light of this constitutional democracy has been dimmed because of his acts (Sheila Lee, Tex.).
  • Article Two of the Constitution does not authorize a president to do whatever he wants. The reason we have a Constitution is to keep government officials from doing whatever they want (Jamie Raskin, Md.).
  • President Trump’s actions force us to protect our elections and the Constitution. I urge my colleagues to defend the Constitution, support these articles of impeachment and remind the world that in America, no one is above the law (Ted Deutch, Fla.).
  • Every member of this body has a responsibility to uphold our Constitution, to defend our republic, and when necessary to hold the executive branch accountable. And we are exercising that responsibility today. So with that, and therefore, I will vote yes on both articles because it is what the Constitution requires, demands (Joe Neguse, Colo.).
  • For the sake of our democracy, our Constitution, and our country, we must do the right thing and vote to impeach President Trump (Don Beyer, Va.).
  • Impeachment is a constitutional remedy for these actions. Trump betrayed his oath, betrayed the Constitution, and undermined the integrity of our elections. Those who are against the impeachment inquiry are willing to turn a blind eye to constitutional violations by the President. As a nation, we have no other alternative. We must protect our Constitution and the United States of America (Bennie Thompson, Miss.).
  • I will uphold my oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States in favor of impeachment (Donald Norcross, N.J.).

Republicans likewise refer to the Constitution in their party platform and cited it during the impeachment hearings.

The Republicans

In recent years, Republicans have maintained that they are “the party of the Constitution.” The most recent Republican Party platform was adopted at the party’s convention in Cleveland in 2016. The Constitution is frequently mentioned in their platform as the Republicans’ authority:

We believe in the Constitution as our founding document.

We believe the Constitution was written not as a flexible document, but as our enduring covenant.

We reaffirm the Constitution’s fundamental principles: limited government, separation of powers, individual liberty, and the rule of law.

We affirm that all legislation, regulation, and official actions must conform to the Constitution’s original meaning as understood at the time the language was adopted.

The words Constitution, constitutional, constitutionally, unconstitutional, unconstitutionally, and constitutionality occur in the Republican Party platform a total of 80 times.

Before the vote was taken in the House of Representatives on the articles of impeachment, Republican members of Congress invoked the Constitution just as the Democrats did, but in this case in order to justify voting to not impeach the president:

  • This is a sad day for our nation. When one political party, along with their cohorts, and the deep state and the mainstream media, try to hijack our Constitution (Mike Rogers, Ala.).
  • Today’s articles of impeachment against President Trump are an assault on our Constitution and the American people (Peter King, N.Y.).
  • I want to thank my Republican colleagues who have toiled honorably in defense of the Constitution and the rule of law under difficult circumstances (Gus Bilirakis, Fla.).
  • In defense of the Constitution, I urge all members to oppose both articles of impeachment (Fred Keller, Pa.).
  • I will proudly vote no today, a vote that upholds our Constitution, defends our president, and preserves the pillars of our nation’s democracy (Tim Walberg, Mich.).
  • This impeachment betrays the nation, the Constitution, and the American people (Kevin Brady, Tex.).
  • I want my statement to be in the record for the end of time to show I was on the side of the Constitution (Donald Bacon, Neb.).
  • This process has been an embarrassment to our country, an insult to our Constitution, and a distraction from the real work we should be accomplishing for the American people (John Rose, Tenn.).
  • Madam Speaker, think of our republic, think of the Constitution, think of the oath that we all swore to protect and defend that Constitution, and vote against these partisan, reckless, and dangerous articles of impeachment (Liz Cheney, Wyo.).

Some Republicans recognized the hypocrisy of Democrats’ talking about the Constitution:

  • My colleagues speak eloquent about the constitutions they found under mothballs. Where’s respect for the Constitution when the people’s House daily refuses to do its actual job while shredding federalism and limited government (Chip Roy, Tex.)?
  • ? It’s very interesting to hear the socialistic left Democrats that have a newfound appreciation for the Constitution and our founders’ principles (Randy Weber, Tex.).
  • All of a sudden what we have is these strict constitutionalists on the other side of the aisle. Listen, this has nothing to do with the Constitution. It has nothing to do with anything but raw politics (Mark Meadows, N.C.).
  • Democrats won’t be able to hide behind a pretend veneer of caring about the Constitution. History will record the Democrats’ legacy as a betrayal of the Constitution (John Ratcliffe, Tex.).

How can Democrats who wanted to impeach the president and Republicans who didn’t both appeal to the Constitution as the basis for their decision?

The Constitution

The United States was set up as a federal system of government where the states, through the Constitution, granted a limited number of powers to a central government. As James Madison so eloquently explained in Federalist No. 45,

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. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will for the most part be connected. The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects, which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties and properties of the people; and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State.

There are about thirty enumerated congressional powers listed throughout the Constitution. Most of those powers are found in the eighteen paragraphs of Article I, Section 8. Six of them concern the militia and the military. Four of them concern taxes and money. The rest relate to commerce, naturalization, bankruptcies, post offices and post roads, copyrights and patents, the federal courts, maritime crimes, and the governance of the District of Columbia. The last paragraph gives Congress the power “to make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers.”

Elsewhere in the Constitution, Congress is given the power to
admit new states into the Union, propose amendments to the Constitution, regulate national elections, establish courts inferior to the Supreme Court, direct the location of the place for the trial of a crime not committed within a state, declare the punishment for treason, provide the manner in which the public acts and records in each state are accepted by other states, dispose of and regulate the territory or other property of the United States, give the states consent to lay imposts or duties on imports or exports, and provide for the case of the removal, death, resignation, or inability of the president or vice president. Everything else is reserved to the states — even without the addition of the Bill of Rights and its Tenth Amendment.

Members of Congress swear to uphold the Constitution. Article VI, Section 3, of the Constitution requires that senators and representatives “be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution.” U.S. law requires that members of Congress be sworn in before they can take their seats. The language of the congressional oath has changed (it is set by statute) several times since it was first administered in 1789. It now reads,

I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.

To hear the Constitution referred to over and over again in the impeachment hearings and Senate trial, one would think that Democrats and Republicans both follow the Constitution when they introduce new legislation or continue to fund the agencies and programs of the federal government established by previous legislation.

The reality, of course, is that nothing could be further from the truth. Democrats and Republicans in Congress violate the Constitution on a regular basis. Indeed, practically every bill that is introduced makes a mockery of the Constitution. It is a myth that Democrats appeal to the Constitution only when it suits them but Republicans are consistently the party of the Constitution. The fact that Republicans mention the Constitution in their platform, refer to it in their conservative mantra, and express their allegiance to it means only that they are bigger hypocrites than the Democrats.

All it takes to prove my thesis is to shine the light of the Constitution on some key agencies and programs of the federal government and see if they are authorized by the Constitution.

Education. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to have anything to do with education? Of course not.

The drug war. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to regulate or prohibit the manufacturing, buying, selling, or using of any drug? Of course not.

Gun-control laws. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to pass any legislation related to guns, ammunition, or magazines? Of course not.

Minimum-wage laws. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to establish a minimum wage? Of course not.

Foreign aid. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to take money from Americans and give it to foreigners and their governments? Of course not.

AMTRAK. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to operate a rail service? Of course not.

Medicare and Medicaid. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to pay for any American’s health care? Of course not.

Social Security. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to have a retirement or disability program? Of course not.

Food stamps. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to feed anyone? Of course not.

Subsidies. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to subsidize art, culture, agriculture, or scientific and medical research? Of course not.

Anti-discrimination laws. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to have an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and prevent or prosecute acts of discrimination? Of course not.

Welfare programs. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to fight poverty, establish a safety net, or give cash to the poor? Of course not.

Organ sales. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to regulate the buying and selling of human organs for transplants? Of course not.

NASA. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to explore outer space? Of course not.

Housing. Does the Constitution authorize the federal government to make home loans, give out housing vouchers, or even have a Department of Housing and Urban Development? Of course not.

Democrats and Republicans in Congress support all of these things. They may disagree on particulars,  such as the amount of foreign aid a certain country should be given, the work requirements for welfare programs, what the federal minimum wage should be, or how much farmers should be subsidized, but neither party opposes the existence or mission of any of these plainly unconstitutional agencies and programs of the federal government.

It is clear that no matter how many times the Constitution was referred to during the whole process of the investigation, impeachment, and trial of President Trump, members of Congress — Democrat and Republican alike — invoke it only to suit their own political purposes.

This article was originally published in the May 2020 edition of Future of Freedom.

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