A new kind of conservatism has emerged in the past three years. Ken Cuccinelli made that perfectly clear in his speech this morning at Defending The Dream
The topic for his speech was Obamacare. He talked a little bit about health care, but not much.
He talked about liberty.
He talked about federalism.
He talked about the Constitution.
He talked about being free from the shackles of national government.
Mr. Cuccinelli began by describing federalism: the sovereignty of the States and how the enumeration and the 10th amendment work together to maintain that sovereignty.
After the Attorney General first mentioned health care (Obamacare) he said:
“On behalf of liberty, these are the fights of our lifetime.”
It was powerful.
The conversation amongst conservatives has changed. Issues are no longer framed in terms of the specific policy question at hand.
It’s no longer about the point of conception, but whether or not the federal government has a right to say anything about it.
It’s no longer about health care, but whether or not the federal government can compel you to by insurance.
It’s no longer about spending on education, it’s whether or not the federal government has the authority to get involved in education in the first place.
It’s no longer about Whether or not a high capacity magazine is necessary for recreation, but whether or not the federal government can even broach the subject.
The conversation has changed, indeed. On virtually every public policy issue the questions have become fundamental and not trivial. They have become strategic, not tactical.
If Barack Obama has done one thing well, it is that he changed the conversation. For too long, the government elites have spent and spent in an orgy of Constitutional corruption.
No more. Finally, we are paying attention.
Ken Cuccinelli leads the way for this focus.
Ken reminded us today that the Obamacare was signed into law on March 23, 2010, 235 years to the day after Patrick Henry said:
“For my own part, I consider it as nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery; and in proportion to the magnitude of the subject ought to be the freedom of the debate. It is only in this way that we can hope to arrive at the truth, and fulfill the great responsibility which we hold to God and our country…
…Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!”
I wonder what Patrick Henry would have thought about a US President signing a law compelling citizens to enter into contracts with one another.
The conversation has changed. Over all policy issues and all spending measures and all fiscal and monetary issues, there is but one question:
Would you have freedom, or slavery?