« Verdict with Ted Cruz

Ep. 79 - Showdown at the Supreme Court

2021-06-22

Showdowns over religious liberty, adoption, and Obamacare are going down at the Supreme Court. Luckily, our intrepid co-host is quite the expert in this area—and not just because he wrote a book about it! Senator Ted Cruz joins Michael Knowles to break down why we always seem to be one vote away on the most crucial SCOTUS cases and what's behind this divide on the Court. Plus, given a magic wand, which constitutional amendment should we repeal?

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
A showdown at the Supreme Court, major cases involving religious liberty involving adoption involving health care and another challenge to Obamacare and believe it or not. The co host of this very podcast is the plaintiff and a major Supreme court case. It's coming down the pike. This verdict with TED groups welcome back to vertical TED crews. I'm Michael Knolls, I'm gonna have a spoiler right here. I am not the plaintiff in this case coming down the back of the Supreme Court. It will not be me. We'll be- are intrepid host, senator crews, senator until I come up It is where, at the end of a court terms, so it's it's always busy as we get decisions coming down and- and they usually say
the biggest ones for last. So senator you are an expert in this field, not just because you went to law school, not just because you are a Supreme court litigator and you have argued before the court before also because you ve written a book The subject of the court called one vote away. I've been very busy hawking my book speechless, but your book one vote away very crucial right now, because we have had some pretty serious cases just in the past couple of weeks. Well, that's right! At the end there some interesting potential divides that we're saying among the more conservative. Just as you know, the press has been very fond of saying: there's a six vote. Conservative majority on the court- and that may be the case it may not time- will tell there's. No doubt the three Supreme Court justices that President Trump put on the court will be a very
living legacy of his and it may prove- is most long lasting legacy. But experience teaches us that that a justices ten year that their jurisprudence is assessed and measured in decades, not an individual years. So it's really early with with Cavanaugh an Gore such an bare, and it's really early to assess what kind of justice is there going to be. You mentioned my book one vote away. As you know the final chapter, the book tat This is the history of Supreme Court nominations, starting with Eisenhower and going up to the present dad. You know I raise real concerns in particular about Cavanaugh and to some extent about WAR And and those concerns go back to John Robertson, what we ve seen so the two big to say that have come down in the last few days. One concerned Obamacare. And the other concerned. This
Philadelphia which had excluded catholic social services from doing foster care adoptions, because the catholic Social Services wouldn't put into foster care a child in a same sex households they required. Or tat too, to be a foster parents that that would be a mother and father not be a same sex couples, and so the city of Philadelphia through the Catholic Social Services. Out of that big this, even though they had been doing it for about two hundred years and the supreme court unanimously struck that down struck, struck Philadelphia, exclusion of Catholic, so services down and on a the Supreme Court seven to decline, I doubt upon care and both of those decisions
interesting, among other things, for the divides that they showed among the more conservative justices so senator I I want to get into the seven two decision, because that is obviously yes. But what do you mean when you say that a nine zero decision shows the differences among the conservative justices? It would seem to me that everybody's in agreement- well, it would but but all when the court will agree on the result, but disagree significantly on how you get there so our let's. Let's start with the Philadelphia case. As I said, the city of Philadelphia decided that Catholic, so services was no longer eligible to participate because it wouldn't put a foster child. In a same sex home now mind you. There were other foster agencies that would put a child of same sex home and they they deem the Catholic. So services, you can't participate anymore and Catholic. So services filed a lawsuit, arguing that their exclusion was unconstitutional.
that went all the way to the Supreme Court and nine zero. The Supreme Court agreed. It was unconstitutional to exclude Catholic, so services. So what was the disagreement? Well, the disagreement was that chief justice raw I wrote the majority opinion in a very narrow opinion and it concerns decision of the Supreme Court decades ago, called employment division versus Smith, and I was actually a decision from Justice Scalia that lessened the protections for religious liberty, and it's been widely criticised opinion. Employment, division versus Smith, held there the law is neutral and generally applicable, in other words, if it applies to everyone that that ah is not subject to strict scrutiny. What does that mean? Strict scrutiny, as when the courts will examine Roy?
seriously, whether a law as constitutional and they will demand that that it be justified by what's called a compelling state interest. That is near we tabled. So it's hard for a law to serve survive, strict scrutiny, okra and in the Smith decision the court said it a neutral and generally applicable law, it doesn't have to survive, strict scrutiny, It means that we usually be upheld. What happened in employment division versus Smith was, you had someone who was a member of this the native american religion, who who consume pay only in a religious ritual, and that individual fail to drug test and was denied benefits because he failed drug test and and what the court concluded and Smith is. Since the drug test requirements or neutral? They worked targeting religion, they weren't persecuting religion.
nobody was allowed to consume pay that that it was acceptable to exclude them from benefits. Now it's interesting Scholars have disagreed: whether Smith is right or wrong as a matter of constitutional interpretation. There, a vague, the debates about law, professors and judges about what the history of the first amendment holds. What what the background is cannot just on this point at being basically entirely ignorant of this question of the law yeah. What's the writing? sir should should the guy have been able to have the pay only and not have to deal with the consequences or or not. On the constitutional question, I would say it's hotly disputed. There are strongly held views on both sides as a policy matter for a long time. At least it was not disputed, which is what happened after the Supreme Court decided Smith, the United States Congress came and passed a law that was called the religious freedom. Restoration act right now. What was the rest
should it was literally bringing back the religious freedom that Smith had taken away. So Congress was unhappy, was smitten. Religious freedom, Restoration ACT was was introduced by a house member by the name of Charles Schumacher. You may have her in the Senate? The religious freedom, Restoration ACT passed the Senate by a vote of ninety seven. Two three so was overwhelmingly by partisan was signed in the law by then President Bill Clinton a Democrat. So it used to be in the nineties that protecting religion, Freedom was an overwhelmingly by partisan proposition and regardless of whether Smith, right or wrong as a matter of constitutional law, historical record as a
policy matter just about. Everyone agreed that the that we want laws that subject religious phase, two significant burdens to be held to a higher standard that you should not be able to trample on religious liberty, absent meeting a very vigorous test so fast forward to the Philadelphia case. The disagreement between the more conservative justices was whether to overrule smithy. The original decision that sad, neutral engine The applicable laws are not that that happened to answer and burden. Religious faith are not subject to strict scrutiny and and what chief justice what state is in his opinion. He said we don't have to answer that question, because this law is not neutral and generally applicable this law instead, is it that there is in the contract
that the city signs with a social services agency, a provision exemptions, and so because there are exemptions, the city could have exempted the catholic Social Services and every just agreed. It was unconstitutional for them not to do so because Philadelphia. This case was targeting the catholic Charity exact for being here right so Justice Alito writes a descent that is hot, mean justice. Alito is ticked off and Justice Alito is joined by Justice, Thomas and just a score such they both argue vigorously that that the court's majority, by refusing to overrule Smith by refusing to even addressed the constitutional question, essentially they're playing games there, avoiding the big question and what Justice Alito argues is listen, it's very easy for the city of Philadelphia go back now on remand and
In their long go right back after the catholic Church, all they have to do is eliminate the exemption language from their contracts, and so They will be neutral and generally applicable and we'll be right back in this loss. It and so Justice Alito dissent is, is vigorous. Now, one of the things that's interesting, as you also have justice, bear it joined by justice, cabinet and Justice Briar, who essentially defend chief Justice Roberts and so for those who don't keep track of the horse. Races you ve got bear it. We were told us to the right of a tailor, the hot and now that would not seem to be the case. Cavanaugh obviously went through that brutal confirmation process under Trump and Briar is a liberal- is a liberal on the court. Eight he is and bear it and cabinet say they have serious doubts about whether Smith is right. So if your counting noses you ve got the
Justice Justices, Ellida Gore, such and Thomas saying They would overrules Massa their unequivocal and you ve got baron. Evan are saying they have serious doubts about Psmith. They don't quite say that overall it, but they hint pretty heavily, but they say in this case we don't have to. And then you have Briar who joined them in the in this case we don't have to, although he doesn't join them in saying we should overrule Psmith. It's an interesting dynamic that my play out in your you're gonna, see. Secondly, talk about bomber carrots actually similar to what played out the Obamacare case, where You ve got Lido as the most vigorous conservative pulling the core. one direction and usually Clarence Thomas within the two of them together, least in these two cases, gorse, which lies lines up with them. You have roberts who has been moving steadily to the left.
and at least in these cases you have cabinets and bear it citing more with Roberts than with Alito and Thomas and end so that dynamic at the end. the day. The results, the Philadelphia cases, unquestionably right, that you shouldn't be excluding the catholic Social Services, whites, nine zero, have every justice, even the most liberal justices agreed with that But this potential divide among the more conservative justices could be powerful foreshadowing for what may play out next year when their several big cats, is coming down, including a major abortion case, including a major second amendment case. If there is really a divide if we see Cavanaugh siding with Roberts, more and even potentially Barrett siding with Roberts more. Then suddenly, on an abortion case, it's not clear where there are five votes on the cord, and so it
It's real uncertainty to wear the court's majority is going to go next year and in the years to come, I just have to know before we get to the Obama carcase. I just have to get this off my chest. Senator. Are we ever going to have a reliable? He conservative court because I know republicans- have put their blood, sweat and tears into electing people to the presidency into getting through the judges on nation, and yet to invoke the title of your book. We always seem to be one vote away on really crucial cases well and
you're right, and that there's a reason for that. I mention the last chapter of my book where I go through the history, Supreme Court nominations and then there is a pattern. If you look at the justices, who have been principled, constitutionalist people like Scalia people, like Thomas people, like my former boss, William Rehnquist people like Ali, do they all have a pattern? They have all had significant records in government typically needs a cutie brand. They of all defended the constitution, defended conservative position and they've been exploring dated. They faced withering criticism and abuse, and they haven't wavered that's the pattern that has produced justices who have the the spinal fortitude to withstand the pressure on the court. On the other hand, when you have justices that that don't have a paper record that that that have been very clear
Our full very guarded have avoided, saying anything almost without fail. They turn out to be disastrous, so I focused on a couple of key decisions: George Herbert Walker, book when he was president, he had in one room David suitor, hitter other room, a judge, Name Edith Jones Edith Jones, was the strongest conservative, her generation. She was on the fifth circuit. She was rock ribbed, suitor, with someone who had never expressed an opinion on any contested constitutional issue, his whole life. He had no paper trail right, Bush, forty one pics sooner instead of Jones. That was a catastrophic mistake, fast forward, a Bush thirty three Bush forty three had in one room, John Roberts, other room mild boss on the court of Appeals MIKE looting, MIKE looting was at that time. The same thing Edith Jones had been unquestionably the strongest conservative appellate judge in the country. Rock ribbed he'd been Scully as very
LAW Clark has been an incredible friend and men towards me. Bush. Forty three, like his father, went with the easier choice. Roberts had been very careful about what he said. He didn't have that many controversial positions. It was an easier confirmation that proved a major decision had they not made those decisions, Obamacare would have been struck down. Had they not made those decisions, we would have seen some major major victories and Anne had I been in the White House, I would pick data's Jones and not David suitor. I would pick MIKE looting and not John Roberts and then, when it came to president trumps, nominations, look Brett Cavanaugh is: is it a good man and a decent man, and I think he was treated horrifically
and the confirmation process, but Bread Cavanaugh has been in in many ways almost a clone of John Robert. He followed a very similar career path was on the DC circuit was very cautious, and I have very real concerns that Brett CARE Who is going to continue to follow John Roberts PATH, and I am quite concerned about the path John Roberts has taken Gore. Such likewise did not have the kind of rock rib record that a Scully or a Thomas or no Lido or rank was TAT Gore such had a stronger record than Cavenaugh, but it was it wasn't it nearly as developed and, as I outlined in my book or there's a decision Gore such issued in a case called boss stock, where he read rewrote the federal civil rights law to include two right into them protections for sexual orientation.
And an gender identity and listen as a policy matter. A lot Americans agree that that civil rights law should protect general orientation and and said irritation and gender identity, but Gore Gore such didn't wait for where's to change the law. He just re wrote the law from the Supreme Court. I think that was a really deeply questionable decision and so how the Trump justices perform. It's gonna take years to find out, but I think that for for all three of those judicial vacancies, President Trump talk to me about them. I told him. I didn't want the seat for all three of the vacancies. I urged him to MIKE likely. That's who I would put on likely the senator from Utah, my closest friend in the Senate. I have a hundred percent confidence that Michael D, like like Thomas, like a leader like Renquist, would have been added. Lately Rock Ribbed, she has a record,
the record. He has a right and he's been pounded ya. I agree, would have been tremendous. Would it be great if you're on the court, but you are not interested fair enough? I won't. I won't proud you any more on that, but I will pick your brain on this other case. His then, after the Obamacare case, I want to hear about the the more active role you'll be playing in the court when you, when you bring a case they're coming up on an unimportant, important issue. But just very briefly for those who didn't. follow the Obamacare decision. This was the third time that we try to get rid of Obamacare the Supreme Court and it didn't work. That's right, and so
bomb care when it was passed. The first challenge to the super add to a bomb care, was decided in two thousand and eleven and the Supreme Court to the astonishment of most observers upheld it, and this was John Roberts- is first big pass to see its when he started down the road to the dark side. John Roberts, the chief wrote, wrote the I wish I were say that tongue in cheek I d, I dont, really mean it quite literally right. It's interesting, the first, a bomb, a care decision, the challenges to a bomb care were that it eight seated congresses authority under the commerce clause. No one is the commerce clause, Commerce Clauses vision of the constitution that gives Congress the power to regulate commerce between the states and the argument against Obama cares the individual mandate, which ordered you,
Michael knows much must purchase health insurance. The argument was forcing you to buy a product that had never happened in the history of of the United States government and it was commerce between the states. It was you where you are. It was not interstate commerce and the commerce clause is the most common justification for much of federal regulatory authority. First, Obamacare decision, agreed the individual mandates that requirement that you buy health insurance exceeded congresses power under the commerce clause, so that was a great victory. the next thing that opinion said is it exceeded congresses power under the spending clause, and so you read the first eighty percent of the Obamacare decision in here like while this is fantastic. This is fantastic. This is great.
And then at the very end, John Roberts does a a sleight of hand where he says well, so this would be unconstitutional except the individual mandate is not a penalty, it is a tax right right and when he called it, attacks, there's a whole different line of jurisprudence. That says on the taxing power conquer, Greece has broad authority to design tax now. The thing about it is Obamacare repeatedly referred. It is a penalty and not attacks. End politicians, including Morocco I'm an attorney Democrats has said this is not a taxes is not a taxes are not attacks. This is not a tax and John Roberts for the Supreme Court said. This is a tax, never mind what they said. We're colleague attacks that was the magic trick that upheld Obamacare. The First, on the second time Obama CARE was challenged. I won't get into the details of it, but a cent
Legion. John Roberts did another magic trip track where he said the federal government is estate. So the statute said that that you could have the subsidies for a care on exchanges set up by the states. A bunch of states decided not to set up exchanges, the federal government Dan informed exchanges and the Supreme Court said while up the federal government is now estate who knew so. That was to this was number three. What happened? Three remember and twenty seventeen Congress pass the Trump tax cuts. My was very active, leading the fight to make that happen in one of the fights that I led in the Senate was the fight to eliminate the the individual mandate to repeal the individual mandates of the law. Right would
Fine, you, if you viewed by health insurance, you'd, get find by the arrests and they got millions and millions of dollars of fines imposed on people for not buying health insurance as part of the Trump tax cut. We zero that out. We lowered the fine two zero which effectively eliminated it So what happened in this Obamacare case is the state of Texas filed a lawsuit, and I said well: if been lowered to zero, it's no longer attacks and if it's no longer attacks than the basis for concluding its constitutional? disappeared, and if the individual mandate is not constitutional, then the rest of Obamacare should be struck down as well. So that was their argument, went all the way to the Supreme Court. Long and short of it is the Supreme Court rejected that argument by Vo two thousand seven hundred and twenty two so rejected it overwhelming they did so on a really strange ground. They did so on the ground of standing.
they concluded that taxes and a bunch of other states that were suing did not have standing to sue Ann and the individual plaintives. There are also some individual people were parted losses. They said they didn't have standing now. What a standing me standing as a requirement of the constitution under article three of the constitution, courts, don't just issue opinions on any question that comes up. It has to be what the constitution says is an actual case or controversial. It's gotta be a fight it. You can't just go to the court and say: hey I'd like you to answer this abstract question of law. My pals, or debating, and our dorm room last night. So could you please give us a conclusion, and by the way, their legal systems that allow them, but that that actually have some their legal systems. For example, the legislators can ask the court gives us a legal decision on this question of law our system, doesn't do that in its more limited, because it requires a real dispute, a fight and so standing says, put simply you gotta
you gotta, be you gotta have skin in the game. You have to be hurt right by this. in order for you to challenge it. You can't just challenge a law. You know like it's got to have actually injured you just Briar wrote the majority opinion and they concluded the states worn hurt by the people, won't hurt by an end. It is a very narrow reading. I think it's a far too narrow reading you mean because senator they're they're saying if there is no two if a devious, zero it out, then you're not being by it. Is that the argument that is then so, you're intuitive, where, where Briar went but Texas, his argument in the states argument in the individual plaintiffs argument as yeah, but were hurt by a bomb care. The Obama care rags have driven health insurance premiums up now
simply so we're paying thousands more Texas. The state of Texas alone said they were paying eighty million dollars more in health insurance costs for their employees because of the Obama care required it's like eighty million dollars a year. That's real injury and the majority aged parse. Things oh narrowly, though they sit well yeah, but the individual mandates not hurting it, because it's you it, and I think it was a. It was eight dancing on the head of a pin, so just justice, Alito descents, along with Gore such an elite, owes pissed both of these to censor interesting because their lucky,
IRAN's Supreme Court. The sense that are sometimes I read the law a little bit different lay. I would come out this decision slightly differently. Leaders worked up and he, I think rightly takes the majority to task that their dodging the question entirely. This standing argument you know to them means of Americans, whose health insurance premiums skyrocketed under Obamacare guess what Supreme Court just said. You have been hurt you right. You're. Writing. The Czech done hurt you at all that extra money He is not an injury, it's not damaged. I think that's a pretty loopy conclusion, but that's what seven justices did know. What's interesting about this Michael you've ever particularly Amy Coney Barrett, the central argument. The Democrats end up Press said when she was nominated? Is this crazy, Ladys, gonna repeal Obamacare? And they said this is the vote?
repeal Obama CARE she is going to take your health insurance away, while Justice Barrett was with justice. Prior was with the majority, with the seven to that included. There was no standing, I think, that's a disappointing rolling and there are times where there's so much political demagoguery from the political processes that it scares justices into avoiding the hard core and I think there is a very real argument- that they did- that in both of these cases and Why Alito is really worked up is is that he feels that the Justices the majority in both the Philadelphia case and the Obamacare case, our dodging the hard questions, because they're scared of the politics that-
is not an encouraging sign for next year, on the big big ticket case, the cases of abortion and second amendment. You know I saw some commentators went at making this point about. Amy Conny bear it and they said you see, we proved Democrats wrong because Amy Coney bear it was supposed to vote to repeal Obamacare, but then she didn't ya. We proved you wrong and I thought you up. If we keep proving the Democrats wrong, we're gonna have a country left to conserve, and this is not not a good way to do it, but this raises questions forget about these cases for a second. This raises questions about the cases coming up and specific face it, you are bringing to the Supreme Court. Well, that's right, so I made a plaintive in a case that is going to the Supreme Court and going to spring ports on the merits and its. It is a less consequential case than these cases we ve been discussing, but it's still a day signal
in case, and it is challenging a provision of Mccain, fine gold, which is the big campaign, finance legislation and the spring quarters. Her challenges the different aspects of Mccain Feingold before what I'm challenging as one particular provision that prohibits a candidate running for office who has made a loan of your own personal funds to your campaign from paying yourself back after the election with funds raised after the election to the extent they exceed two hundred and fifty thousand dollars, so it caps how much you can repay yourself at two hundred and fifty thousand dollars I believe that provision is unconstitutional, and so I filed a lawsuit, challenging the Federal Election Commission and arguing that its own constitution and I won
oh, there was under Mccain, fine, go, there's a special provision to consider challenges to that law and they convened what's called a three judge district court. It consisted of a court of appeals, judge and two district judges and they operator district court. We won unanimously. The three Judge District Court unanimously ruled in my favor and concluded this provision was unconstitutional decision was was authored by Judge Naomi roused, the judge on the DC circuit, one of the three judges on the panel wasn't Obama, judge a district judge who joined the opinion in full under Mccain, fine gold. The federal election Commission can appeal that case directly to the: U S Supreme Court's, you skip the court of appeals and it's not discretionary whether they take it ordinarily, the Supreme Court's jurisdiction is discretionary, can choose. Do I want to hear an appeal or not young? Under Mccain,
gold. They wrote that it's an automatic appeal, and so the Federal Election Commission did appeal it, and so next year the court will decide whether my claim is valid and at the end of the day, I think it is an important free speech issue and let me explain why, so whenever we have campaigned, finance laws that are passed by Congress should remember. These are incumbent politicians who were passing laws and their principal objective is to prevent anyone from beating in income at politician right. They don't want to lose and so they want to put in laws. So you can't beat income at politicians. What this loan repayment provision does is makes it hard for challengers. If you someone running for office, you decide, you want to run and challenge some you're mere member of Congress. Your senator and, let's suppose you know you ve saved some money- you ve got a house on youth
say a mortgage on your house and you put five hundred thousand dollars into the campaign and that the money that you use to win or not, but what this is saying is what you know: what, if you put five hundred thousand dollars into your campaign for the mortgage on your house, you know Lee Payback two hundred and fifty the other two fifty year at a lock, you have given your money to the people of Amerika as as a mandatory gift. Why did Congress do this and Mccain Feingold because they don't want you to put mortgage your house and put five hundred thousand dollars to run against them. They want to make it really hard to beat unencumbered, and so what this rule does is it benefits to people, it benefits incumbents and it benefits the super rich if you're a gazillion, you know if you ve got hundreds of millions of dollars and by the way a number of my colleagues have hundreds of millions of dollars. Few have hundreds of billions.
Dollars, then you can write a several million dollar check and you don't really care if you get paid back because you're so rich that it's not it doesn't. Have that big, an impact to you. This really benefits incumbents. the super rich that the law that I'm challenging and- and I think our chances are very good- that the Supreme Court's could agree with us that you can't prevent p. From investing their own money in political speech and trying to convince the american people of the policies they support. Annually, be able to pay yourself back your own money that you that you invested in it right. I think that the way the left will spend it, of course, is that this is about politicians being able to pay themselves
and it's just away in a boo, hoo hoo for the politicians, but think about all the politicians who pass to the law who are trying to keep challengers out of their races as usual, we're running very late, but before we go, I have to ask you this question so little bit out of left field, but they broadly on the same topic. This question is from Matthew Senate of crews. If you could unilaterally add or remove or remove one constitutional amendment, what would it be? That is an interesting question I dont know. Let me look if I could add something I would probably say at its very close between a balanced budget amendment, a term limits amendment in both of those I have supported on the author of a term limits amendment. I think that's a really important fundamental structural reform being abolished, but by budget amendment, which most of the states have would be a really big deal too. So those are, those are probably the
To that I would add. Look you can make an argument for removing the sixteenth amendment which allows for an income tax, so the constitution, as initially written, did not allow for an income tax, and when we added that the this, the sixteenth amendment, it was initially meant to be, it was told this will just be one or two percent it'll be really small. It'll just be for the super age, so you know every time you get your paycheck all that money taken out it remember, that's just one or two percent and its only if your billionaires a euro getting money, take our right. Oh god that's I must have been under a different understanding of things. That's great. I think it would be a far better tax system. I am a big advocated the fair tax and having a consumption tax. I think that's much better than an income tax, the simplest way of putting it. What you tax decreases, what you subsidize increases right now we tax productivity- and we subsidize
Slav, that is less than ideal by the way. As an interim policy proposal, I support a flat tax. I think a flat tax is still an income tax. It doesn't go as far as the fair, too which I openly support, but I think a flat tax is much more achievable so aren't. You made a repeal one, that's what I'd repeal. Ok, I was. I was actually thinking, although I suppose in your job. This wouldn't make sense that you might repeal the seventeenth men, the direct election of senators, which look obviously direct election of senators has worked out very well for you. They have given us at least a handful of good senators, a bite it removes the states say in our federal government, and many conservatives have suggested that that amendment and other progressive amendment, my
also be one impediment to a more conservative country, is so you know, and as usual Michael, you make a very good argument on this, and and as the piper was framed to me, the seventy, the men, it would be a very good candidate for consideration. I have said before if I could push a magic. and make the seventy the Mehmet go away. I would precisely because you're right as the constitution was initially designed, senators were appointed by the state legislatures. and so the Senate operated on it as a check on the federal government's power. Because look if it were the state legislature appointing me I'm not gonna go to Washington and and vote to take away all their power and suck at all in Washington. You tend to be responsive to the people who put you in the job, at least theoretically, in a democratically accountable
situation. So when we move to the direct elections of senators, we removed one of the major constraints on the growth of federal power and spending in debt, so with a magic wand. I would be quite opened on doing that. That being said, you know what I have said for the last decade is: listen, I'm not I don't intend to lead a fight to repeal the seventeenth Amendment cause it ain't gonna happen now. I think it is very. Hard to ask anyone to give up the franchise once people have the right to direct election of senators, I don't, convince them. You shouldn't be able to vote to Electra senators anymore, so I think we ve crossed that Rubicon. And so what I fight for now is our right. Just like we should have been responsive Under the original system, the state legislatures that appoint us now we should be responsive to the people who elect us, and so that's what I urge to my colleagues who were elected by the people of of our state an end. We need to keep the promises we made
and we need to move on to the next battles and we will see what comes next very shortly, but not any longer on this episode is we have to go on Michael Knolls. This is verdict with ten crews,
Transcript generated on 2021-08-08.