It is not by the consolidation or concentration of powers but by their distribution that good government is effected. – Thomas Jefferson
Concentrated power is not rendered harmless by the good intentions of those who create it. – Milton Friedman
All of history attests that the centralization and concentration of power breed despotism. – Samuel Adams
Concentrated power has always been the enemy of liberty. – Ronald Reagan
If there is any presumption it is… against holders of power, increasing as the power increases. – John Dalberg-Acton
Article 1 Section 1 of the Missouri Constitution declares, “That all political power is vested in and derived from the people; that all government of right originates from the people, is founded upon their will only, and is instituted solely for the good of the whole.”. The power the People have entrusted to government is intended to be broadly distributed and never concentrated in too few hands.
To preserve these principles the House of Representatives is designed to be the branch of government nearest the People. Each citizen should enjoy equal representation, therefore every member of the General Assembly should truly represent his or her constituents, not simply be a “rubber stamp” for party leadership. And each legislator’s bills should have the same opportunity to progress through the process – the legislative agenda should not be dictated by any single rep or some small clique.
The current practice of predetermining the Speaker, even before the latest crop of legislators are elected, and heavy-handed leadership practices are antithetical to these principles.
We also find offensive the idea that a candidate for Speaker could “buy” votes from fellow Reps by making contributions of any size to their campaigns. The first priority of any legislator should be the defense of liberty and the Constitution, not political payback.
We do not take lightly our duty to justice and fairness to Representative Diehl. It is only after enduring a long train of abuses from him that we presume to speak out. Among our grievances are Representative Diehl’s lack of response toward — and even obstruction of — legislation that has clearly had very broad based support.
- Obstructing the passage of meaningful legislation which would protect the privacy rights of Missouri public school students.
Please see MISSOURI LEADERSHIP PROJECT to continue the article and for more information.