Tenth Amendment Forum in D.C. – a mixed bag

A recent forum on federalism held on Capitol Hill served to highlight both the progress made and the challenges ahead in reigning in an overreaching federal behemoth, and restoring the proper balance of power between the state and federal governments.

Close to 40 people gathered in a committee room inside the Longworth House Office Building on Thursday, April 14, to discuss the Tenth Amendment, federalism and how to place decision making back into the hands of the states. Participants included members of Congress, state legislators, and representatives of several think tanks and other organizations, along with numerous congressional staffers and policy analysts.

Why go into the belly of the beast?

I attended as a representative from the Tenth Amendment Center with one very important understanding – states do not need permission from the federal government to exercise their inherent powers. That said, I recognize the value in developing relationships with members of Congress sympathetic to the cause and doing all I can to assert TAC influence as discussions move forward.

Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah) hosted the forum. Bishop also co-founded the 10th Amendment Task Force, a project of the Republican Study Committee. The task force exists to “disperse power from Washington and restore constitutional balance of power through liberty-enhancing federalism.”

The 10th Amendment Task Force says the right things.

“While the founders did intend for the national government to exercise some important powers, these powers were intentionally limited in number and scope. Most powers were reserved to the states, or more important, the American people.”

I remain wary of anything coming out of D.C. Politicians excel at saying the right things with an accompanying failure to deliver when it comes down to actual policy making.

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