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The Executive Branch Must Act Within Its Authority

SCOTUS case may right overreach by Executive/Judicial Branches
No "Red Wave,"
an Act of God?
Build Your House on the Rock, Your Sand Dunes Too!

Published in Galveston County Daily News
January 19, 2023

Look for God’s hand at work.  The anticipated “Red Wave” didn’t happen last year.  If it had, the much-needed changes in the way Congress does business wouldn’t have ever happened.  With a larger Republican majority, the reformers would have been ignored.  But because their votes were needed to get the Speaker elected, they were able to force important changes.

Meanwhile the drive-by media tells us that taking fifteen votes to get Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) elected showed the Republicans are unable to govern.  This is the narrative they’ll be spinning over the next two years, but it’s not true.  Let’s look deeper and see what a small number of “conservative reformers” were able to accomplish.

Accountability: For years we’ve been trying to make the people we elect accountable.  The House rules were changed to allow any member to invoke the “Jefferson Motion” which is a vote of no confidence over the Speaker’s leadership. If invoked, McCarthy would need to get 218 votes in order to remain Speaker.  With a small majority he will listen, holding his feet to the fire.

Omnibus Legislation: No more omnibus measures will be allowed, like the 4,100+ paged, $1.7 trillion spending bill that few read, which included 7,500 earmarks, and which included funding for non-essential “woke” measures.   McCarthy agreed to limit all House bills to single issue/subjects and require at least a 72-hour period to read them prior to voting.

[The Speaker also promised to pass all the individual appropriation bills -- something we have been calling for, for years -- and which will do away with the need for massive omnibus spending bills.]

Open Debate: The rules will allow for open deliberations and amendments instead of only allowing an up or down vote on the entire package.  The massive spending bills passed in the last Congress are perfect examples of how previous Speakers have limited the options of Members of Congress and controlled the process to their liking.
[Previously, Members were forced to weigh the good things in a legislative measure against the things they found distastefull. If they liked supporting the military and law enforcement but opposed open borders they had to make a choice; as opposed to the new process which will allow them to offer amendments to reject those things they find unacceptable.]

Term Limits:  The small number of “reformers” were able to get a commitment for an on-the-record vote on term limits for Congressmen. 
[Previously those elected representatives who were in power objected to limiting the length of their terms in Congerss. Under the new agreement, all the members of the House will need to vote on the record whether they support or reject term limits, and perhaps even whether such will apply to themselves.]

Debt Ceiling Limits:  Additionally, budget bills will stop the seemly endless increases to the debt ceiling; the Speaker has agreed to hold the Senate accountable for the same thereby giving the opportunity to rein in out-of-control spending.

[In the news, currently, there is a discussion about raising the debt limit. The fiscally responsible members of Congress are pushing for balancing the amount of any increase in the debt against an equal amount of reductions in federal spending. The Democrats in the Senate and Joe Biden are fighting to allow unlimited spending authority, while recent polls show the American public wants to cut spending (not just cutting the rate at which spending is increasing!)]

Texas Border Plan: Also promised was a vote on a plan to deal with open borders, completion of a border wall, and beefed up enforcement while targeting cartels as criminal organizations. 

Defund 87,000 IRS agents:  McCarthy vowed to pass legislation defunding the Democrat-approved 87,000 IRS agents who are “coming after you” and not to “help you.”

End COVID mandates: The “reformers” got a commitment to end all funding for COVID-19 and its related “emergency funding”

Weaponizing of the FBI: Finally, McCarthy agreed to convene a “Church-style” committee to look into the weaponization of DOJ, the FBI and other governmental agencies. 

Remember, if the Speaker doesn’t keep his commitments, the door remains open for a vote of no confidence.

Yes, it may have looked like chaos in selecting a speaker this year, but we’d suggest the Lord’s hand was in it.  Maybe the lack of a “Red Wave” is how He brought forth much needed change.

About the Authors and Columnists
Bill Sargent and Mark Mansius


Bill Sargent and Mark Mansius have written
over 250 guest columns since 2014 and continue to do so.
Bill lives in Galveston, Texas and Mark in St. Georges, Utah.
Both ran against each other in the 2012 Republican Primary
for Texas Congressional District 14, since then
they have become close friends and colleagues.