Skip to comments.Constitutionally, Speaker Boehner Should Not Be Making Pre-emptive Tax Concessions
Posted on 12/23/2012 9:51:56 AM PST by Veritas_et_libertas
From the standpoint of one familiar with our constitutional history, the spectacle of the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives making pre-emptive tax concessions to the President is unnerving.
Over a period of centuries, the lower house of the English Parliament, the House of Commons, fought for and won the power of the pursethat is, the right to initiate, as well as approve, all revenue measures. Based on English success, we adopted the same system. Until now, apparently.
Fundamental to the rights of Englishman was (and is) the right not to be taxed without consent. That required approval by the House of Commons, as the best representative of the people in the English government.
It also meant that only the House of Commons could initiate tax laws. Such laws could be vetoed by the upper chamber (the House of Lords) or by the King, but they had to originate in the Commons. This rule proved to be a decisive factor in Englands conversion from an aristocratic government into a free country.
But if the leaders of the Commons had made pre-emptive concessions as Boehner is doing now, England might not have become a free country. And if England hadnt, neither would have the United States.
In America, we copied this aspect of the English system. During the 1787 constitutional convention, the commissioners [delegates] had to wrangle over the composition of the new Congress. A key part of the ensuing Great Compromise was the stipulation that only the House of Representativesthe federal institution most closely reflecting the peoplecould originate revenue bills. To be sure, a few commissioners tried to dismiss that prerogative as insignificant. But in one of the conventions most memorable moments, John Dickinson described how experience instructed us in ways that mere reason never could:
Experience must be our only guide, told his fellow commissioners. Reason may mislead us. It was not Reason that discovered the singular & admirable mechanism of the English Constitution. . . . And has not experience verified the utility of restraining money bills to the immediate representatives of the people.. . . the effect was visible & could not be doubted.
Hence, the final wording of Article I, Section 7, Clause 1: All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.
Boehners job is not to make pre-emptive concessions to the President. It is not to negotiate for presidential permission to pass a budget. His job is to lead the House to adopt a budget in line with the views of those who elected them and the interests of the country. The initial decision to lower, raise, or maintain tax rates should be made in the House. Any negotiations should take place only after the House adopts a budget, and that budget should serve as the starting point. Not the demands of the President.
Dangerous power this president gathers.
I absolutely agree with you on this posting. Where does it say anywhere that Bonehead has the option to discuss any of this with the King here? Not only that but in secret? Hell no. When some say take our country back I hope they envision getting these whimps out of DC and relegate them to late night infomercials peddling snake oil.
why in HELL anybody would propose tax increases when we need a substantial tax CUT to help the economy pull out of this tail-spin!???
someone has to tell Mr. Boehner that the House has the control of the spending power, constitutionally, and that WE DID NOT ELECT IM TO RAISE TAXES even higher than they already are!!
Oh, I forgot...."Constitutional? You've got to be kidding me." Nancy Peloski
Hear, hear!! FIRE BONEHEAD!!!
Call your (R) Congressmember and DEMAND they not vote for Bonehead!
This article has it right. The Speaker has no business holding secret meetings with the President on budget matters. This stuff is supposed to be formulated in committee and on the floor of the House.
I didn’t elect Rob Woodall to go to the US House of Reps so he can sit on his hands and wait for Tammy Faye to come and tell him what they are going to do about fiscal deliberations.
Hmmmm, might that be us???
When u work for the K-Street Money Changers, like Bonehead does,
The constitution doesn’t matter, only money does.
YUP! Let’s tell him we need at least a 20 or 25 percent tax CUT!
Him going in there leading with a big tax Hike as his “negotiating position” was totally beyond belief!!!!!!!!!!
talk about Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-dum!?!
He should pass a budget and revenue bill with a 25% tax cut (and it would sure help if he could vastly simply the corrupt tax code anyway)..... and send it to the Senate and then let’s see what Reid actually does (not what he says he would do, or not do, rather.....but what he actually does when the American public learns he has a 25% tax cut bill on his desk)
Strange to hear that the huge tax program known as the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010”, was never challenged on the basis it originated in the Senate, rather than the House.
The Senate is not nearly as proportionately respresentative as the House of Representatives, according much more weight per 100,000 population to small states as compared to high-population areas. The popular vote election of Senators, the 17th Amendment, is one of the more regressive ideas cooked up by the “Progressive” movement under Woodrow Wilson. Almost as pernicious as the 18th Amendment, which prohibited the sale or trade in liquor, or alcohol in most forms.
Senators were originally intended to represent the interests of the state legislatures and governors in the state they represented, which is why there are such strange laws today on the books in regards to how a replacement is chosen for any Senator who, for whatever reason, cannot complete the original term for which he was sent to Washington.
But in a rush to make the system of governance in this country more “democratic”, the old means of selecting Senators was largely thrown out, which led to vastly disproportionate power being allocated to very small voting bases.
Boehner needs to find another job. It is obvious the one he is doing is not what our Constitution demands. He has taken an oath to uphold the Constitution - not undermine it and pass all power to The King!
Congress should simply pass the budget and let the Senate consider it, with amendments, if they care to. If Harry Reid wants to play games, simply adjourn and go home until some adults show up. Let the entire government shut down. Screw 'em and everyone connected with it (including myself, on SS and a modest military pension). We will survive. But if we don't do the right thing now, we won't! Let's settle this now before it is too late and the fascists completely take over.
That will get some action as soon as the usual worthless slugs and grifters realize their EBT cards are worthless and they start to burn the place down to get even!! Frankly, it is better than we deserve for electing some of the worst and corrupt people among us to make our big decisions.
Do your JOB Mr Speaker!
Impeach the Indonesian NOW!!!!
Call your (R) Congressmember and DEMAND they not vote for Bonehead!
Contact yer Congress Critter Now!
“When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new guards for their future security Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government.”
True then; truer now.
Do you think this is going to end in other than utter disaster; realistically?
I think that Boehner CAN have these discussions with whomever he wants.
It's where he follows it up with strong-arm tactics to get the other members to agree or lose their committee seats that Boehner runs afoul. No matter what he agrees to, he still has to get the House to pass it.
For the past year, I've been saying that it is in Boehner's best interest to stop talking to Obama and keep the negotiations within Congress, and make Harry Reid deal with Obama.
Boehner wasted time by going at it alone. He can remove committee members only a few times before that weapon loses effect. I'll say that he one more shot at removing committee members. If he overplays it, he will start a revolt. Nobody in their right mind would agree to sign up for two more years of that kind of "leadership."
He hope he's already wasted that threat. I'm hoping that the other Republicans will use the time off to let the situation fester, and hope that Boehner says something that makes it worse. That way, it will be easier to form a plan to unseat him in January.
I do not think it can end smoothly. Not at all.
I HOPE ... against all logic... that it can be made to end without the oft-predicted real supersized Crash. To do this, and it will still be a rough ride, Boehner needs to propose a substantial tax CUT now. Pass that bill and send it to Reid and let’s see what he does with it.
That is not a complete solution to this horrible mess. But, it is at least a significant START on a solution. This message will be noted by our creditors ... this message will at least show some intention of saving our currency ...
and the American economy.
In short, I think things CAN be made better, but it is AWFULLY late in the game ... and it will therefore be a very rough ride ...
Just my thoughts. I have no crystal ball. But we don’t need one to foresee where we’re headed if Mr. Boehner (who just happens to be sitting in the one position that can do the most good right now).. if Mr. Boehner doesn’t reverse his TAX INCREASE BS and really make some positive moves... then YES, we are most certainly headed right down Obama’s (”transformational”) drain straight to the sewer
The result was an awful experience with democratic, majoritarian abuse tending toward anarchy.
By the mid-1780s, most states were correcting their errors. One of them was to establish upper legislative houses that were either not popularly elected, or required a high bar of property ownership or net worth. IOW, upper houses intended to resemble the House of Lords and not be subject to the whims of the people.
The danger of entirely popular legislatures was demonstrated in our early history, a fact apparently forgotten or ignored as the 17th sailed through Congress and the States.
There's always hope - better yet, pray! ;)
Worse, the 16th, which brought the wrath of the entire federal government down on the individual heads its citizenry...
Nobody makes the move anymore and let things play out. They all freeze as if it's inevitable that the threat will happen.
Okay, talk is cheap. Let's see the House pass a bill and watch Harry Reid ignore it as the tax rate increas approaches. Let's see how the Democrat Senators act under pressure, too, not just the House Republicans. Just make sure to put a short leash on Mitch McConnell or he may wind up pulling defeat from the jaws of victory again.
Make them act. Make them live up to their threats, because then they'll own it. Go to Durbin, and Schumer, and Leahy, and Boxer, and Landrieu, and ask them why their side is not acting. Get Debbie Wasserman Schultz to say something. Get them ALL on record talking about the lack of action in the Senate, not just Reid. Make them all defend Reid's actios.
Agree. Force the hand of Dingy Harry.
“The danger of entirely popular legislatures was demonstrated in our early history, a fact apparently forgotten or ignored as the 17th sailed through Congress and the States.”
Couldn’t agree more with you on that!
Indeed it did.
I'm going to stop clicking on these 'negotiation' threads. The crap being reported is nothing but smoke and mirrors. People need to watch to see if they raise the debt limit again. All the rest amounts to nothing but pennies and nickels IMO.