Federalism, Texas Style

Leave it to the Lone Star State to put up a fight.  Despite unprecedented federal government expansion, Texas is determined to flex their Constitutionally granted state powers.  At the helm is Governor Perry, known for his love of the tenth amendment. “States are best positioned to deal with state issues, a fact the founding fathers had in mind when they included the 10th Amendment in the Bill of Rights,” Perry’s official site explains.  He’s right about that, of course.   

Texas Attorney General (only the second Republican to serve in this post since Reconstruction) Greg Abbott is not only unafraid of a fight with the federal government, but he proactively pushes federalism.  While the majority of Texas state legislators are continuing to work toward protecting the liberties of our state residents, Abbott will also see to it that the federal government does not infringe on their rights as well.  

Texas is one of many states refusing to set up an Obamacare exchange, a move that could unravel the President’s hallmark legislation.  Governor Perry has also pushed back againt the federal government and their plans to discontinue the locally created Women’s Health Program, which provides preventative care and screenings much like Planned Parenthood, sans abortion services. Regardless, Perry pledges to continue the WHP until legislative or legal action require its conclusion.  

While Texas can’t take credit for being the first state to introduce such legislation (Wyoming gets top billing there), the legislature is discussing a bill to protect Texans and their second amendment rights. If passed, the bill would allow for the incarceration of federal officials attempting to enforce bans on semi-automatic rifles or magazine restrictions.  Reportedly, the bill has the full support of Attorney General Abbott. This isn’t entirely suprising seeing as the icon of all second amendment fights was a product of the Texas Revolution. 

Texas is also on the frontlines of the fight against the EPA. As the Houston Business Journal explained:

The heavy-handed approach the federal government continues to pursue is misguided at best and deliberately punitive at worst. In contrast, Texas has done an exemplary job of protecting the environment while sustaining a productive private-sector energy industry. The state has made huge leaps in clean air attainment despite a growing population, and the state is also a national leader in energy technologies, such as enhanced oil recovery, carbon capture and sequestration, and the development of a digital grid and advanced metering systems that reduce energy inefficiency.

One of the latest additions to the U.S. Senate is Senator Ted Cruz. Senator Cruz has a favorite amendment and I’ll give you one guess which one it is… Formerly the head of the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Center for Tenth Amendment Studies, Senator Cruz penned, “Reclaiming the Constitution: Toward an Agenda for State Action.”  Seldom (if ever) does Senator Cruz mention political issues without mentioning reigning in federal government. 

With a veritable dream team of “tenthers,” and economic prosperity deserving of recognition particularly given the current state of affairs, Texas is poised to lead the charge to restore state powers.  A healthy dose of Texas swagger may be just what we need to ward off the ever expanding federal government.

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