Monday, January 23, 2006

McCain: 'Lobbying Process Breeds Corruption'

To be fair, that headline is misleading. In fact, Senator John McCain (R-AZ) did call the real problem straight up: the practice of "earmarking" funds for special district projects. He's right! Special projects should not be Acts of Congress, not without highly specific Constitutional authority.

McCain also, to his credit, said that this country needs to start building nuclear reactors again in order to achieve energy independence--that is, not having to import fuel from other nations.

McCain doesn't always go far enough, and even this time he might have said that the real problem is that we've gotten too far away from the spirit of the Constitution. Sorry, Senator Robert C. Byrd (D-WV), but the latest library bearing a plaque with your name on it does not constitute a "needful building" within the meaning of Article I, Section 8, Clause 17 of the Constitution. Nor do I see it as a law "necessary and proper for the execution of the foregoing powers" or any other power granted to the government.

Sadly, time sanctions all thefts--and highly informal means of amending the Constitution.