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Romney’s Achilles Heel

Romney instituted a socialistic health care program in the state of Massachusetts while he was the Governor there and many politically minded people believe that if he is the GOP candidate, he will not be able to defend his statements concerning why he did so. Other are concerned that he will not repeal Obama’s health care program which will be imposed upon the citizens of all 50 States starting in 2014. There are several similarities in Obama’s Health Care Program and Romney Care.

In order to combat the criticisms of his applying Romney Care into law, Mitt uses the rationalization that the citizens of Massachusetts wanted universal health care for the state. This is a specious argument and displays his wrong thinking. An elected official is duty bound to protect his constituents from making wrong decisions, he is morally bound to stand for the Constitution not only of the United States, but in the case of States’ elected officials, the Constitution of that State. Mitt shirked his moral and honorable responsibility by signing that bill into law.

Romney would have better footing in this campaign if he had vetoed that bill, and sent it back to the legislature to leave it to them to force the citizens of Massachusetts to pay for medical care. And many citizens of Massachusetts did not want this forced upon them. Many people moved to New Hampshire, in protest, to avoid the taxes to pay for this failed program as well as the fees associated with not having health care insurance.

Using the 10th Amendment of the United States Constitution to justify this action is also a rationalization. The Founders never intended for the 9th or the 10th to be used to put into place an anti-American, anti-capitalistic, pro-collectivist law by which some citizens are mandated to pay for other citizens, nor was it intended to force people to buy something they felt they didn’t need. Many younger people don’t buy health insurance because they are healthy and have not incurred any medical expenses.

This argument reverts to Original Intent, not only of the United States Constitution, but to the State of Massachusetts Constitution which was adopted in 1780.

In order to understand what Original Intent means, we must first know what a Constitution is.

According to The American Handbook of Constitutional Law by Henry Campbell Black, LL. D. in the 4th edition published in 1927 by the West Publishing Company, a Constitution is a governing document instituted by the people as a whole instead of by a legislature of their representatives. He states that it cannot be abrogated, repealed or modified by any power except that which established it, the people. http://www.originalintent.org/edu/constitutions.php He continues by pointing out that Constitutions are not established to restrain the people, but to restrain the government.

Black continues, “The provisions of a constitution refer to the fundamental principles of government and the establishment and guaranty of liberties, instead of being designed merely to regulate the conduct of individuals among themselves. [Constitutions announce principles, while statutes apply them. Sproules v. State, 97 Tex Cr. R. 561, 262 S. W. 757.” Ibid.

Summarizing, a Constitution is written for the people, put into effect by the people and it is to protect the people’s Natural Rights. It is a document limiting the control the government has over the people who voted to install the Constitution as their governing document.

Since both the US Constitution and the Constitution of Massachusetts have an amendment process, the definition of Original Intent must be utilized to guide that process.

Language is one of our keys to understanding what people write. However, words change meaning over time and in order to understand what is meant by a document written over 200 years ago, we must turn to the dictionary meaning of the words from that time period. Finding what the Founders actually wanted for this country is hinged on this premise.

The body of the Constitution outlines the limitations on the Federal Government, the duties of the government and the division of the government. The Rights of the People are outlined in the Constitution, primarily in the Bill of Rights, the first Ten Amendments to the Federal Constitution. The combination of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution are our Founding Documents and they delineate the restrictions placed upon the Federal Government. In the 9th and 10th Amendments, the enumeration of the rights of the people not spelled out in the first eight Amendments is reserved for the people and for the States. However, taking from one person the fruits of his labor is not something the Founders intended, even if the people vote for that proposition. The “Pursuit of Happiness” clause of the Declaration was, among other implications, intended to ensure that people would have the right to do what they desired to increase their property, including physical property, monetary property, intellectual property and the results of those quests and to not have the Government of the Federal or State government legislate to confiscate those yields even if citizens vote for it. One person does not have the right to take the rights of another unless that right is given over freely. The majority voting to take from the minority is not the same thing. Giving of one’s rights to another person is an individual’s action.

The “Pursuit of Happiness” clause is part of Original Intent. When we refer to this concept, what is meant is the government may not change provisions of the original document with respect to liberties. In other words, it may not be amended to take away the rights of the people. We have seen several Amendments that do just this, for example, the 16th, which addresses Income Tax.

The first words from the Preamble of the Constitution of Massachusetts are as follows: “The end of the institution, maintenance, and administration of government is to secure the existence of the body-politic, to protect it, and to furnish the individuals who compose it with the power of enjoying, in safety and tranquillity, their natural rights and the blessings of life…” (The original spelling is utilized here.) http://www.nhinet.org/ccs/docs/ma-1780.htm As you can see, though the language is different from the United States Constitution, the implication is the same: Men are entitled to the fruits of their labor.

“Laws must relate to the nature and the principle of the government that is established or that one wants to establish, whether those laws form it as do political laws, or maintain it, as do civil laws.” Charles de Montesquieu

These issues will rear their ugly head over and over as Romney continues to campaign for the nomination of the Republican Party Candidate.

And, Obama will use the fact that his health care reform bill is based on Romney Care.

Will Romney be able to defend his position on his signing the health care bill when he was Governor of Massachusetts when he faces Obama?

The voting bloc will pay attention.

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Comments (16)

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  1. Mike says:

    Eleanor, I can’t agree with your reasoning here on several levels. First, at the point when Romney got Romneycare passed, there were no direct court rulings striking down the individual mandate as unconstitutional. There are of course several now, but that was well after the passing of Romneycare. We’ll see what the Supreme Court has to say. My personal opinion is the individual mandate is unconstitutional. And hopefully if the Supreme Court rules that way Romney will acknowledge that Romneycare therefore was in error. But when it comes to repealing Obamacare, Romney has made it very clear he will do just that. I trust his word on that because if he doesn’t he’ll be a one-termer just based on the conservative votes he’d lose. Also, his argument that the people of Massachusetts wanted this law but the people of the nation as a whole do not is a valid argument. Using your argument that a governing official has an obligation to do what the constitution states, not what’s merely popular, Romney can justify any attack on Obamacare by saying it’s becoming increasingly clear from the various court rulings that this is an unconstitutional law and also that the people of the nation have made their voices heard that they do not want this law. Who do you think will get the anti-Obamacare vote in this scenario? Romney or Obama? Let Obama attack Romney on the issue. I welcome the opportunity for Obama to draw attention to the sheer awfulness of his bill by going after Romney on Romneycare.

    • Eleanor says:

      The fact that no court was petitioned when Romney Care was passed has no bearing on it’s constitutionality. Both constitutions are clear in their Original Intent that Peter cannot vote to take from Paul the fruits of his labor. Understanding that point is the point of the article. To address your contention that Romney will win on this issue if he takes your tack, I will agree. The other point of my article was to point out that elected officials have to be honorable and adhere to the Constitution of not only the Federal Govt, but the State Govt. We elect our leaders to lead, not to blindly give to the electorate what they want. If the electorate is so upset with what an elected official has done, they have the option of voting him out. Honor and character do mean something in the public forum.
      Thanks for your comments! Please keep coming back to my articles when I post them!
      Eleanor

      • Mike says:

        It does have a bearing because it’s not a cut and dry constitutional issue. To make the argument against an individual mandate on a constitutional basis takes some pretty serious understanding of and conversance in the constitution. That’s why this is going to take several days of arguments before the Supreme Court because it’s not a straight-forward matter at all. While I believe a mandate is unconstitutional, it’s going to take a very skilled legal mind to make the argument. As for the constitutionality of transfer payments which I think is what you meant by “taking from Peter to pay Paul,” then all the GOP candidates including Ron Paul have in one way or another voted for or signed some sort of government transfer of one type or another. That isn’t unique to Romney. As an aside, Romney’s assertion that Romneycare only applied to the uninsured and not every single person whether insured or not is not a bad argument.

        • Eleanor says:

          Mike,
          Once more, I stand by my assertion that ORIGINAL INTENT is against any form of socialism. Davey Crockett when a member of the House (or was it Daniel Boone? I can’t remember which one.) refused to give governmental money to a naval widow. Instead he donated his salary to her and called for the other members of the House to do so and they did. I’m not trying to make a case for any of the other candidates, what I’m trying to do is educate as to original intent of the Founders and to point out that elected officials need to be honorable in not allowing their constituency to demand things that are not in our Constitutions. Romney has not said he made a mistake in signing Romney Care, and I know there have been add ons to it since he left office. This is how we get into the messes we are in. One law leads to another which leads to another. I’d be very happy with only 10 laws. If they were good enough for God, 10 are good enough for me.
          The individual mandate is what the lawyers against Obama Care have decided to go after but they could have gone after so much more in that law, it’s mind boggling to think of it all. I think they chose the individual mandate because without that, the whole law falls apart.
          Yes, Romney can argue that his bill only included the uninsured but there were already several programs in place for people, such as medicaid. Shrug, we’ll have to agree to disagree on this one, Mike.
          Eleanor

  2. Elise says:

    Thought provoking and well written article. Would that everyone read the constitution in light of “original intent”. Have we as a people “evolved” to the point that we do not realize the gift we have of freedom, and now long for a world in which the government takes care of us? Thanks for the words of enlightenment and reminder of where it all started. Hopefully its not too late to get back there.

    • Elise,
      Thanks for the compliment! I have said a dated dictionary is needed to understand the words of the founders as well as the Federalist Papers and the writings of the founders. Most people don’t delve into history because they think it’s all dates. History came alive for me when I read Samuel Adams biography by Ira Stoll. From there it was all a roller coaster ride for me!
      Many people think we need to amend the constituiton to take rights away from people to have equality, but egalitarianism is a collectivist ideal and we as humans are not capable of acheiving it. This is inherent in many of our laws now, and it’s leading us to slavery. Hopefully, people will learn and wake up.
      Eleanor

  3. David says:

    Great article Eleanor, It is a sad thing that most Americans dont fully look at our Constitution and really see what the founders put down. I have over the years looked at this amazing document to try to educate myself to fully understand its true content.The most frightening thing that happens is when legislators and judges, whos job it is to uphold our Constitution, begin to inject or misread things into it that are not there. Eleanor, thank you for trying to open peoples eyes and making them really “look” at what is in front of them.

    • David,
      Thanks for the kind words about my article and what I’m trying to do. I try to educate and many who have made comments to me about the article, here and in my personal e mail, have said they didn’t think in the terms I employed in this piece.
      I think one of the most important things to aide in understanding the Constitution is not only a meaning-dated dictionary, but reading the Federalist Papers and the writings of the Founders themselves.
      Eleanor

  4. Renee Reedy says:

    Eleanor~ Very well written article, informative, and understandable in a whole new way. Thank you for taking the time to write it. BRAVO! Renee Neigh :D

  5. Amy Weavil says:

    I read with great interest “Achilles Heel,” by Eleanor R. InFontino dated March 1, 2012.

    As a previous reply to this article says, this is not new. To us it isnt new; but unfortunately to many Americans it is new news. Look how many people are so ignorant and/or lazy that they actually voted for Mr. Obama the first time. Many still support him and will again vote for him.

    Our country cannot survive another Obama term! His second term will give him a completely free four years to COMPLETELY destroy everything good about the United States.

    I agree with Ms Infontino. I have issues with Governor Romney’s state run healthcare. His reasons for signing it into law, don’t explain his actions to me. I wish he had just said, “I made a mistake. Today, I would NEVER sign such a bill!”

    Unfortunately, I will vote for whomever the GOP nominates and I am not pleased with the selection. However, voting for Obama is NOT an option – and me not voting won’t help our country. If Governor Romney is nominated as it appears he will be, I will vote for him – but i certainly am not happy about it.

    • Amy,
      Thanks for the kind words about the article. I won’t comment on my preferences but they run along the lines of ABO and OMG (OBAMA MUST GO)and I will be voting GOP for the first time in almost 20 years. Previously, I have voted for the Libertarian Candidate and did so in 2008 as the state I resided in was overwhelmingly polling for McCain, and he did win that state. I don’t like giving out a lot of personal information here, however, what I posted is true.
      I, like you, wish Romney had at least said, I made a mistake. The state of Mass certainly must have had some medical care in place prior to his signing that bill into law. I know for a fact they have and had Medicaid which can be obtained through a food stamp program. I know there are Charity Hospitals in Mass. There were other options, I believe, that could have been taken.
      Also, I think I’m much more concerned about his honor.
      Eleanor

  6. robin says:

    excellent article eleanor, hopefully romney has seen the disdain americans have for government interference into their lives and has seen the error of his ways. he promises to appeal obamacare and i pray he keeps that promise should he win the white house.

    • Robin,
      Thanks for the comment. My intention is not to sway voters for or against any candidate, just to educate, and this article was to educate specifially for the 9th and 10th Amendments in accordance with Original Intent. I think my analysis was well thought out and supported by my research. Thanks for your continued readership.
      Eleanor

  7. Joe Davies says:

    These criticisms of Romney are not new and have been talking points for the Left-wing, kill-America-with Socialism-Now folks since Romney entered the race.

    For the life of me, I can’t understand why conservatives continue..at this very late stage of the game…to attack Romney, when the real target should be Obama. Obamacare IS THE ENEMY….Barack Obama IS THE ENEMY. Attack Obama, not the prsumptive Republican candidate!!!

    Nothing new has been added here. This is old news and old observations/comparsions. But, even if there had been something revealing, my thought would be….why? Are old-school “conservatives” so smug and determined to NOT have Romney that they’re willing to continue an assault that can bring no comfort…other than to the enemy, liberal dogs?

    I don’t want to be pointing my finger in November saying…”I told you guys to STFU…now look what’s happened” KWIM?!

    • Joe,
      This was not intended to sway anyone’s opinion of Romney or Obama. It was intended to educate about the 9th and 10th Amendement to the Constitution as well as the Original Intent of that Constitution and the one written mostly by Samuel Adams for Massachusetts. It is not an attack on Romney, per se, it is to show there should have been more thought on his part before he signed that bill into law. There are other solutions to health care rather than a government solution. And I’m sure Massachusetts has access to Medicaid and other charity programs to suppliment or replace a trip to the ER to avoid costs.
      I am not promoting anyone in this race in this article. I am trying to educate those that say the States are the laboratories for experiments in governance which they are clearly NOT according to Original Intent.
      Eleanor