Republican Representative Speaks Out

A highlight of today's debate came when Representative Gregg Underheim stood up to tell his fellow Republicans to vote against the amendment. If discrimination is appropriate for our Constitution, he wanted to know, then where does it end?

Here're the highlights:
Constitutions protect individuals from undue intrusion into their lives by government. The right to free speech is a constitutional prohibition on governmental restriction. Freedom of religion is a restriction that says government can't prevent you from worshipping as you want. Passing this today will change the nature of the Constitution. This is anti-constiutional.

Constitutions ought not treat gay people differently than anyone else. This ban moves us from protecting people to disenfranchising them.

What we are doing today is wrong.

This is an anti-constitutional act. In virtually no other area do constitutions prohibit indivduals from participating in a specific activity. We today are singling out a group of people and saying you will be restricted from engaging in a specific activity. What or who is next? We are now saying that it is acceptable that this document single out specific people. It is the wrong thing to do.

What social policy are we going to put into the Constitution next? When the constitutions are evicerated, some college professor is going to look back, and ask, “How did this happen?” It was Republicans that decided to do that. How did that happen? The one thing the Democrats never did was this. They never wrote a constitutional amendment that ensconced social policy. The never sat down and said they were going to put social policy in the constitution.

Today, we are crossing a line, a line the matters.

We are crossing a line that says it is okay to put our policy preferences in the constitution for perpetuity. That is not the role of this document. We are so overstepping those bounds, it is frightening. We should not be doing this, and I hope that people on my side of the aisle will vote with a clear conscience.

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At 11:02 PM, Blogger Adam said...

Thanks for your good work AW!

At 11:15 PM, Blogger Cathy Van Maren said...

I'm not surprised. Gregg is a good guy. He's in the wrong party. Good for him.

At 1:25 AM, Blogger Justin said...

Nice blog you guys have got going here.

I'm a conservative and I happen to agree with Senator Underheim and the legislators who voted against the amendment.

I believe that in the words of Dick Cheney "freedom means freedom for everyone."

At 6:51 AM, Blogger Tom Otto said...

History will judge those that are voting for this very very harshly. These legislators are the George Wallaces of our time. Our leaders must act with courage and principal.

At 7:28 AM, Blogger ShayShay said...

I'm happy to see a Republican standing up for less government intrution into the lives of individuals. I'm also happy to see a Republican that wishes to conserve the Constitution and leave it the way it is.

At 7:48 AM, Anonymous Keith said...

Valuable contrast between Cathy's ("right man wrong party") and Anahrah's ("conserve the constitution") postings.

Dems have reason to support rights.

Reps have reason to support freedoms.

As we move on for the November vote, I hope and I pray that the Republican establishment are as involved in the NO effort as Democrats. So many good reasons for that.

And while we are involving the Republican establishment, how about the Pro Life establishment, who want to encourage adoption?

And the Evangelical Christian establishment who want to encourage strong and stable families, or who (at least) don't want the bigots to come after them next?

And the NRA who surely shudder at the cost to personal freedom?

And the business community (ESPECIALLY the business community) who want to encourage a healthy climate to recruit and retain skilled workers?


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