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Gov. Perry: 10th Amendment a Vital Issue for All Texans and Americans

Press Release

Location: Austin, TX

Supports resolutions asserting states' rights under U.S. Constitution

Thank you everyone for being here this morning.

I'd also like to thank Representative Brandon Creighton and Senator Dan Patrick, who have taken the lead with HCR 50 and SCR 14, respectively, boldly, affirming the rights reserved to the states by the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

It's a pleasure to be joined by so many who share my concerns about Washington's continued efforts to assume the duties that our founding fathers intentionally left to the states.

This is a vital issue that affects the livelihood of every man, woman and child in the State of Texas and throughout the United States.

Two years ago, we also joined together and raised our voices against Washington's continuing encroachment into matters best left to Texas.

Since that time, things have gone from bad to worse with Washington seizing control of our air permitting process, reinterpreting the Clean Air Act in a way it was never intended to be, and in the guise of health care reform, imposing mandates upon our citizens that clearly overstep federal bounds.

They've even attempted to bribe us with our own money. We've resisted the lure of taking federal funding that would've forced us to blindly adopt national education standards, and tied our hands in the way we administer unemployment benefits.

Our founding fathers very clearly spelled out exactly which powers were enumerated to the federal government and explicitly left the rest to the states.

Over the years and decades, however, Washington has extended its reach, bit by bit, until the sound concepts behind the 10th Amendment were blurred and lost and the idea of states' rights treated almost as a punchline.

The cost of federal encroachment goes far beyond the obvious ; the threatened jobs here in Texas and the skyrocketing price tag of Medicaid , as well as the upcoming balloon payments associated with Washington's overreaching health care plan.

Those costs are staggering. As just one example, from 2014 to 2024, Texas taxpayers will be on the hook for $27 billion in Medicaid expansion costs alone related to federal health care legislation.

That's not even counting the ongoing escalation of federal debt that will be passed along to our children and their children's children.

Even greater than that is the cost of squandered opportunity.

The more functions Washington takes over, the more we lose the spirit of innovation and the sense of competition that comes from having all 50 states , 50 independent laboratories and 50 engines of discovery working simultaneously to solve problems.

In any one of those 50 laboratories, we might stumble upon a solution to a wide-spread problem that's significantly cheaper and more effective than anything Washington could cook up.

But with 50 states walking in lockstep formation to Washington's steady beat, it's a safe bet that nobody's going to get far in solving any of those problems, aside from showing up in Washington with a hand out.

That's why we fight so stringently for state's rights.

That's why our capable Attorney General, Greg Abbott, takes the lead in our ongoing challenges against the EPA and in our fight against Obamacare.

This isn't a turf war; it's a way of doing things better.

It's a way of proving that local people solve local problems better than people hundreds, or even thousands, of miles away.

It's a way of keeping alive the ingenuity and spirit that have made America the greatest country in the history of the world.

We will keep up this fight until once and for all, Washington understands: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."
Not the other way around.

Now, we have some other people up here who have a thing or two to say to you, and to the federal government for that matter, on this issue.

Up first is a man who is pretty passionate about this topic, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.

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