Steve King: I Will Not Vote for Boehner as Speaker

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

This week, Members elected to the 114th Congress will rise, place their left hand on the Bible, raise their right hand and state,

“I do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

This oath does not say, “I will support and defend the … United States…” Our oath is a specific requirement to swear, “I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States…” President Obama has repeatedly plunged our nation into a constitutional crisis. No past president has so cavalierly violated his own oath and through naked political calculation, willfully violated the Constitution. When a president does violence to our Constitution, those who also take an oath to our Constitution have an absolute duty to defend it. We need a Speaker of the House who carries in his bones the conviction of our oath.

At each crisis point of conflict between President Obama and Congress, we have been admonished by our Speaker to take the high road, to pick our battles, to wait for a better time to fight on better ground. As a product of hook, crook, and legislative shenanigan, ObamaCare was passed. The American voters elected 87 Freshmen Republicans to the House of Representatives, every one pledged to repeal ObamaCare. Then, our soon to be Speaker told us we would not and could not use the Constitutional “power of the purse” to block implementation of ObamaCare. By order of the Speaker, my amendment to do so was placed on ice, citing “procedural reasons.”

But we had John Boehner’s statement to rely upon, speaking of ObamaCare on Nov 5, 2010:

“Well, there’s a lot of tricks up our sleeves in terms of how we can dent this, kick it, slow it down to make sure it never happens. And trust me, I’m going to make sure this healthcare bill never ever, ever is implemented.”

By October of 2013, Congress had caved in to the demands of the president and fully funded the operations of ObamaCare. Just last month, defunding ObamaCare did not get raised as a serious debate point as the “CROmnibus” bill fully funded ObamaCare operations until September 30, 2015. Without dents or slowdowns, and without a change in our Speaker,  ObamaCare is on its way to becoming permanently fully funded, even with a new Republican majority in the Senate. The substantive changes made to ObamaCare were almost exclusively a result of President Obama assuming Article I authority, mostly without a peep out of Republican Leadership.

Barack Obama also arrogantly rewrote immigration law from the Oval Office at the expense of Congress, the Constitution, and our sovereignty. Again, almost without a peep out of Republican Leadership. Our Founding Fathers presumed that each of the three branches of government would jealously preserve, protect, and defend their Constitutional authority. It takes a Speaker who both understands and believes his sworn duty is to use all the powers of his office to defend and restore the proper constitutional balance of powers. Instead, our Speaker has placed Obama’s executive amnesty on the path to permanent full funding.

Conservatives have seen their initiatives blocked by the Speaker while he twisted arms for  Obama. Our national debt is over $18 trillion. ObamaCare is fully funded. Obama’s executive amnesty is fully funded until February 27 without leverage to block the president’s lawless immigration policy thereafter. Constitutional conservative’s efforts to defend and restore the Constitutional authority of Congress are blocked by the Speaker.

On January 6, 2015, I will take an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic;… I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me, God.”

Then, I will be asked to put up a vote for John Boehner for Speaker. I know the pattern of his strategy and actions for the past 12 years to the point where I can predict the results. I am convinced Congress will not be allowed to restore its Constitutional authority under his Speakership and by refusing to do so, cannot call upon the courts to do so. How then, can I take an oath to the Constitution and put up a vote for John Boehner, almost in the same breath?

We need a Speaker who will help us all keep our oath, including his own, to the Constitution, not one who has consistently blocked our efforts to keep ours. I will vote for an alternative candidate for Speaker. I can’t vote for John Boehner again.


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