Governor Herbert spoke to Utahans, and his message of Utah’s future security is an important one. Americans in every state are beginning to understand the repercussions of an overextended and invasive federal government. With federal unemployment rates at 11% and 14 trillion and counting in debt, many fear that the fall of the federal government could be the end of prosperity for Americans in every state– those fears are justified in Utah considering that in Herbert’s proposal for the coming fiscal year, 27.7% of Utah’s state budget is derived from federal allocated funds. That’s a whopping 3.5 billion dollars.
Herbert stated in his State of the State address, “the vast majority of regulations causing the most harm to Utah business come from Washington, D.C. –part of the regulatory colossus created by an overreaching, out-of-control, and out-of-touch federal government. I am firmly resolved to work with our Congressional delegation and my fellow Governors to tell the Washington bureaucrats to get out of the way of Utah’s economic recovery, and stop the senseless flow of onerous and misguided regulation from our nation’s capitol.” With federal money comes federal mandates and regulation. Many, like Rep. Ken Sumsion (R-American Fork) , believe that there are ways to curb the federal spending. He said that “if elected, he would reject federal money for any new program and try to cut back federal dollars over time.”
Governor Herbert spoke along the same lines stating, “yeah, we’ve had some increases in money in the budget because of the mandates that come out of Washington, D.C., and this effort to have a partnership, But we will wean ourselves off of it. We will live within our means and as the federal government balances their budget — and I hope they do — we will make those critical adjustments as we do what we need to do here in the state.” The looming economic woes of the central government should encourage all governors to wean themselves off of federal funding to hedge their states from further financial risk; however, the desire to secure autonomy from sprawling federal dictates and restore the compound republic that is prescribed by the Constitution should be paramount.
While Herbert used some very strong language in his Wednesday night speech, including the following statement, “Whether fighting the federal government on ownership and control of our … roads, restoring mule deer population, defending multiple use of our public lands, ending the budget-busting drain of Medicaid, or challenging the constitutionality of mandatory nationalized health care in the Supreme Court, be assured that this governor is firmly resolved to fortify our state as a bulwark against federal overreach,” many in Utah are going to be looking for strong action. With bills like SB0034 (Production and Sale of Food in Utah) hitting the legislative floor this year dealing directly with the Tenth Amendment and state sovereignty issues, Governor Herbert will have amble opportunity to walk-the-talk.
Sabrina Reynolds [send her mail] is the deputy chapter coordinator for the Utah Tenth Amendment Center. She worked in independent schools for 10 years as an English Literature and U.S. History teacher and is a proponent for parental choice in education.
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