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2000 Ron Paul Chapter 96
4 December 2000
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Congressional Record (Page H11933) Cached
2000 Ron Paul 96:1
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to the James Madison Commemoration Commission Act secure in the belief that were James Madison on the floor today, he would share my opposition to this bill. Congress has no constitutional authority to use taxpayer funds to promote the life and thought of any individual. Congressional actions exceeding the limitations on congressional power contained in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution undermine the very principles of limited government to which James Madison devoted his life. In fact, few have been as eloquent in pointing out how liberty is threatened when Congress exceeds its enumerated powers:
2000 Ron Paul 96:2
If Congress can do whatever in their discretion can be done by money, and will promote the General Welfare, the Government is no longer a limited one, possessing enumerated powers, but an indefinite one, subject to particular exceptions.—Letter to Edmund Pendleton, January 21, 1792 (Madison, 1865, I, page 546)
2000 Ron Paul 96:3
Of course, Mr. Speaker, I wholeheartedly endorse the goals of promoting public awareness and appreciation of, the life and thought of James Madison. In fact, through my work with various educational organizations, I have probably done as much as any member to promote the thought of James Madison and the other Founding Fathers. James Madisons writings provide an excellent guide to the principles underlying the true nature of the American government. In addition, Madisons writings address many issues of concern to friends of limited government today, such as the need for each branch of government to respect the Separation of Powers, the threat posed to individual liberty by an interventionist foreign policy, and the differences between a Republic and a pure Democracy.
2000 Ron Paul 96:4
However, the continuing growth of the federal government and Congress refusal to abide by its constitutional limits suggest that the people most in need of familiarization with the thought of James Madison are those who would support this bill.
2000 Ron Paul 96:5
Mr. Speaker, S. 3137 exceeds the constitutional limits on Congressional power, and thus violates the principles of limited government upon which our constitutional system was based. Therefore, I urge my colleagues to pay appropriate tribute to James Madison by rejecting this unconstitutional bill.