After all, just look at the comment that McCain made during an interview just two weeks ago, and consider its implications. McCain's comment reveals his willingness to impose his view of what constitutes "clean government" even though it means setting aside a fundamental right clearly and explicitly defined in the Constitution. McCain Declares War on the Constitution (Again)

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God."

- Oath of Office sworn by U.S. Senators

"I would rather have a clean government than one where, quote, First Amendment rights are being respected..."

- U.S. Senator John McCain

The Constitution contains the text of the oath of office only for the President. But for members of Congress, it specifies that they "shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation to support this constitution."

According to the U.S. Senate website, the first oath, written and sworn to by members of the First Congress, was a simple one: "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support the Constitution of the United States."

During the Civil War, the oath was expanded and complicated with language necessitated by the events of the day.

Apparently, it's far too complicated for Senator John McCain, once again on his quest to limit political speech.

After all, just look at the comment that McCain made during an interview just two weeks ago, and consider its implications. McCain's comment reveals his willingness to impose his view of what constitutes "clean government" even though it means setting aside a fundamental right clearly and explicitly defined in the Constitution.

Talk about dangerous.

This sort of one-man "I know better than all of you fools" attitude is the very sort of thing that the Constitution was written to prevent government officials from tying to enact. That's why the Presidential oath – and the oath taken by members of Congress like Senator McCain – is an oath to defend the Constitution. It makes no call to defend the nation or its people. And it certainly doesn't include any mention of defending the government.

McCain is so far off the reservation here that it's almost hard to believe – even for him. In an earlier age, such a comment might touch off talk of McCain's expulsion from the Senate. But now, it merits hardly a mention in the newspaper.

The Constitution wasn't crafted to protect the government from the people. It was written to protect the people from the government. But Senator McCain's agenda is clear. The people take a back seat to government. Period. And Senator McCain is angling to be the man in charge.

Somewhere, James Madison is spinning in his grave.

May 11, 2006
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