Press Release from Tennessee Tea Party, Jan. 12, 2011:
NASHVILLE — The following list describes the top legislative priorities generally agreed on by Tea Party organizations throughout Tennessee. The Tea Party citizens in your district support these priorities and wish to work with you to achieve these goals in 2011.
There are many other issues that we are deeply concerned about, and our members will address these concerns with you as the legislative session progresses. But, for now, the following five issues are the ones we all, across Tennessee, want to see resolved immediately.
First: Rejecting the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010”:
The “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” of 2010 (“Obamacare”) was, in its process and content, an insult to Constitutional principals and the citizens of the United States. We in Tennessee do not want to be subjected to the illegitimate exercise of federal power that it employs. To this end, we demand that Tennessee, through our legislature, provide all the effort necessary to empower us to have the direct, free market, relationships with our health care professionals and our insurers that we have traditionally and rightfully enjoyed as Americans.
Second: Establishing a Chief Tennessee litigator answerable to the People of Tennessee:
The Attorney General, whose office is established by the State Constitution, is selected by the State Supreme Court. Reflecting views of the United States Constitution that conflict with those of the People of Tennessee, he has rejected the call of the People and the General Assembly to join Tennessee with other states in contesting the Constitutionality of federal mandates, including “Obamacare.” The duties of the Attorney General are assigned by the General Assembly, and currently include the duty to pursue and defend the values of Tennesseans and our government under the Tennessee and United States Constitutions. This history reveals a need to establish a chief litigator for the State whose loyalty will be to the People of Tennessee, and to our Constitutions. To this end, we seek either an amendment to the State Constitution that will make the Attorney General installed by a popular vote; or, in the alternative, by reassigning the duty of litigating on behalf of the State to the newly separated office of Solicitor General, which office will be an elected position.
Third: Terminating State subsidies for unfunded or unconstitutional federal mandates.
The only authority for any federal action is the United States Constitution. The federal government has exceeded its enumerated powers by legislation and regulations that have compelled states to undertake various programs entirely or partly funded by the State treasury. This is a burden on the citizens of Tennessee which we no longer choose to bear. We seek legislation that will deny any funding to programs that are imposed upon Tennessee government or citizens unless the programs are funded by the federal agency demanding their performance; and reject State performance of any federal programs, regardless of funding method, that are not founded upon an identified and agreed power delegated to the United States in the Constitution.
Fourth: Enforcing Constitutional Law:
The primacy of the United States and, within Tennessee, the State Constitutions has been violated by court decisions that rest upon references to foreign law. We seek to impose the sanction of impeachment upon judges in Tennessee courts who are shown to have referred to such pretended authority.
Fifth: Educating Students the Truth about America
Neglect and outright ill will have distorted the teaching of the history and character of the United States. We seek to compel the teaching of students in Tennessee the truth regarding the history of our nation, and the nature of its government. We demand that schools be accountable to teach the conditions that led to the nation’s founding, the sacrifices and contributions of the Founding Fathers and their generation, the gifts of invention, government, commerce, and human values that the People and government of the United States have earned for themselves and have bestowed upon the world. To this extent, we demand that our Republic form of government, detailing its three branches of government, the functions of each and especially the limitations of each are taught in all Tennessee schools.