Constitutional Conservative Hypocrites

As the conserverati gather in Washington DC for this week’s CPAC conference, a document is floating around that encourages conservatives to return to the constitutional roots.  It’s called the Mt. Vernon Statement and it’s signed by the usual cast of clowns that justified every decision made by the last Republican President and the last Republican majority House and Senate.

In part, the statement seems geared towards placating the Teabagger movement.  Here’s an excerpt to chew over:

The conservatism of the Constitution limits government’s powers but ensures that government performs its proper job effectively. It refines popular will through the filter of representation. It provides checks and balances through the several branches of government and a federal republic.

A Constitutional conservatism unites all conservatives through the natural fusion provided by American principles. It reminds economic conservatives that morality is essential to limited government, social conservatives that unlimited government is a threat to moral self-government, and national security conservatives that energetic but responsible government is the key to America’s safety and leadership role in the world.
A Constitutional conservatism based on first principles provides the framework for a consistent and meaningful policy agenda.
  •  It applies the principle of limited government based on the
    rule of law to every proposal.
  • It honors the central place of individual liberty in American
    politics and life.
  • It encourages free enterprise, the individual entrepreneur, and
    economic reforms grounded in market solutions.
  • It supports America’s national interest in advancing freedom
    and opposing tyranny in the world and prudently considers what we can and should do to that
  • It informs conservatism’s firm defense of family (code word for anti-gay/edit note), neighborhood,
    community, and faith.

Mind you, many fo the nation’s founding fathers were actually pretty liberal by many standards. Conservatives seem to forget, the founding fathers gave the ability to change the Constitution becuase times marches forward and society changes.

“Some men look at constitutions with sanctimonious reverence, and deem them like the ark of the Covenant, too sacred to be touched. They ascribe to the men of the preceding age a wisdom more than human, and suppose what they did to be beyond amendment… laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind… as that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, institutions must advance also, to keep pace with the times…. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy as civilized society to remain forever under the regimen of their barbarous ancestors.” — Thomas Jefferson, commeting on reforming the Virginia Constitution.

My complaint about the Mt. Vernon Statement is that it smacks of the “Compassionate Conservative” label the Bushies ran and won on, while being neither conservative or compassionate.  Seeing how the last time Republicans in power did their best to subvert the Constitution by massive wiretaps, bank account monitoring, allowing torture to occur in America’s name, I am having a hard time buying this load of manure.

And since today marks the one-year anniversary of the Stimulus Package put forth by President Obama, Republicans in Congress have done a nice job in demonstrating their hypocrisy by promoting the pork brough home to their districts even after voting against the bill.


In a new research report, ThinkProgress finds that over half of the GOP caucus, 110 lawmakers — from the House and Senate — are guilty of stimulus hypocrisy. Among some of the key findings:

– Top Republican Senate Recruits Are Stimulus Hypocrites: As ThinkProgress reported, Rep. Mike Castle (R-DE), a candidate for Senate, touted over $5 million in stimulus programs he voted to kill. Rep. Mark Kirk (R-IL), the GOP nominee for Senate in Illinois, signed a letter urging Gov. Pat Quinn to provide “Recovery Act (ARRA) funding to expand the Illinois Community College Sustainability Network.”

– GOP Leadership Leads The Way In Hypocrisy: Although he regularly slams the stimulus as a waste while in DC, McConnell has returned to Kentucky to take credit for stimulus programs, even taking time to request more funds. ThinkProgress attended two job fairs held by Cantor, where we found dozens of employers able to hire directly because of the stimulus. Indeed, even Boehner’s office released a statement boasting that the stimulus will create “much needed jobs.”

– The Audacity Of Hypocrisy Knows No Bounds: Many opponents of the stimulus have been quite brazen with their ability to try to claim credit for the program. For instance, Rep. Jack Kingston (R-GA) spent the morning of July 28th railing against the stimulus, yelling “Where’s the stimulus package? Where’s the jobs?” on the House floor. On the same day of his rant, Kingston’s office sent out multiple press releases bragging that he had secured hundreds of thousands in stimulus funds to hire additional police officers in his district. Other stimulus opponents, like Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-GA) — who has called the stimulus a “trillion dollar debt bill” — have printed out jumbo-sized ceremonial stimulus checks to present to local communities to try to garner positive press.

Individually, over half of the entire Republican caucus has hailed nearly every aspect of the stimulus as a success — from infrastructure funds, to food programs, to education grants. But politically, admitting its success might harm the GOP’s chances in November. So with Republicans fixated on winning politically, they have focused on deceiving the public by calling the stimulus a failure, while pretending successful programs aren’t stimulus funded.

  2 comments for “Constitutional Conservative Hypocrites

  1. RHackett
    February 19, 2010 at 7:16 am

    Why is anyone surprised at this behavior?

    Conservatives claim to believe in limited government, then expand it at a rate no liberal could ever achieve.

    They believe in limited government, as long as it is limited to them.

  2. W Eskridge
    March 6, 2010 at 5:30 am

    Interesting [though extremely “hypocritical”] posting since the most intolerant of members of society are liberal by nature and definition. The constitution gives freedoms to individuals [ie. the people], but limits the ability of government to take those freedoms away. Those who would change the constitution would limit the freedoms of individuals, but give the government the power to punish those individuals who wish to enjoy specific freedoms that they [liberals (or progressives, if you wish)] do not agree with.

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