Calvin Freiburger

Bachmann & Friends' Message to Congress: Read the Bill! (Updated)

Posted on November 7 2009 5:00 pm
Hailing from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, Calvin Freiburger is a political science major at Hillsdale College. He also writes for the Hillsdale Forum and his personal website, Calvin Freiburger Online.
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donttreadonmeFall will turn to winter soon, but if the White House thinks the summer’s tea party movement is going to cool down with the weather, they’re in for disappointment.

On Thursday, between 20,000 and 45,000 Americans descended upon Capitol Hill (along with talk radio host Dr. Mark Levin and conservative actor Jon Voight) to protest the nationalization of America’s healthcare system, answering a call put out by Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-MN) just a week before.  Bachmann and Rep. Steve King (R-IA) joined Sean Hannity to reflect on the defiant spirit of the American people, as well as ObamaCare’s political prospects.

David Forsmark and Ben Johnson have already demolished the hypocritical attempts to mischaracterize the crowds as fanatics, and on “Hannity,” Bachmann highlighted one of the real reasons the protestors would have gotten under the skin of more than a couple Democrats:

People didn’t just come to hear speakers; they then pivoted, fanned out, went into the Capitol, went into the office buildings, were very polite, went from door to door to door, knocked on the doors.  We handed out, actually pages, actual pages from the bill.  People would take one page, and then they’d carry that page and ask members of Congress, “Can you read this to me and explain it to me so that it makes sense?”

Of course, we already know that, not only does Congress rarely bother to read the laws they pass, but lawmakers often scoff at the very idea that they should know exactly what new regulations they’re imposing on the country. Progressive ideology dictates that the democratic process should only decide which general ideas and broad goals the government is to adopt. The details of how to enact them, on the other hand, are best left to unelected administrative bodies. That’s why the Left insists this overhaul of one-sixth of the economy needs to be done quickly, or why they’re not all that interested in talking about whether or not ObamaCare will cover abortions or illegal immigrants.  Heaven forbid we involve the people in such a complex matter; only our enlightened experts will suffice.  This debacle is but one of many case studies in how progressive governance, as Michelle Malkin recently wrote, means “the death of deliberative democracy.”

It’s too soon to throw up the “Mission Accomplished” banner, but enough just might be enough.  The Republican victories this week have reignited Blue Dog Democrats’ fears over force-feeding liberalism to the American people, who are increasingly wary of ObamaCare.  So fear not the demagoguery, America; they smear you because they fear you.  Keep the heat on our elected officials, and keep on partying like it’s 1773.

UPDATE: It turns out that the videos Fox played during this segment included footage from the September 12 Tea Party, presented as if it was from Bachmann’s rally instead.  Comedy Central’s Jon Stewart first called attention to it, and last night Hannity apologized, calling it an inadvertent mistake.  Leftists, of course, will insist it was deliberate, all the while ignoring deceptive video use from other networks.  But intentional or not, misleading video is misleading video, and Sean Hannity and Fox News deserved to be called out on it.


Hailing from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, Calvin Freiburger is a political science major at Hillsdale College.  He also blogs at the Hillsdale Forum and his personal website, Calvin Freiburger Online.

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