I sort of expected the Republicans to abolish labor–or at least its named inclusion among the business of Congressional committees. After all, the GOP really doesn’t like tough things like physical work or the people who do it.
But it wasn’t so long ago that the Republican Party–not to mention its newest activist branch, the Tea Party–claimed to give a damn about civil liberties. Hell, Louie Gohmert, who reassured me yesterday the Fourth Amendment is still on the books, is even a member of the Judiciary Committee.
But like labor, the Republicans have also apparently done away with civil liberties and civil rights.
From a Jerry Nadler press release:
Today, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), who has served as the Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties since 2007, responded to news that the Republican-led Judiciary Committee will change the name of the Subcommittee to the “Constitution Subcommittee.” He issued the following statement:
Once again, the new Republican majority has shown that it isn’t quite as committed to the Constitution as its recent lofty rhetoric would indicate. Today, it has yet again shown its contempt for key portions of the document – the areas of civil rights and civil liberties – by banishing those words from the title of the Constitution Subcommittee. In 1995, when Newt Gingrich became Speaker, one of the Republicans’ first acts was to change the name of that Subcommittee. For anyone who thought the change was merely for rhetorical purposes, our experience over 12 years of Republican rule showed just how hostile they are to individual rights and liberties. With this move, we can only assume that they are intent on more of the same. It is going to be a long and difficult struggle to protect these cherished rights and liberties from assaults by the Republican majority.
Republicans have made a great deal of noise in recent days about standing up for the Constitution. But, in less than 48 hours, they have already revealed their true intentions. In addition to reading selectively from the Constitution on the House floor in a much-exalted ceremony on Thursday, Republicans also blatantly violated the Constitution by allowing two of their Members to vote without having been sworn-in, and introduced unconstitutional legislation aimed at bypassing the 14th Amendment’s citizenship clause. And, with the Subcommittee name change, they are again telling Americans that only some parts of the Constitution matter. Fundamental rights and liberties appear to have been dropped from the Constitution by far-right ideologues.