Monday, August 13, 2012

Hoekstra Calls for Repeal of 17th Amendment, Doesn’t Want Michigan Voters to be Able to Elect U.S. Senators


From Michigan Democratic Party:
Roll Call Reports on Hoekstra’s Support of Yet Another Out-of-Mainstream, Anti-Middle Class Position
LANSING – In yet another major national news report on Pete Hoekstra’s out-of-the-mainstream agenda, Roll Call has exposed that Hoekstra actually believes the 17th Amendment, which allows Americans to vote for their Senators, should be repealed. Hoekstra hypocritically wants Michigan residents to vote for him for Senate, but if elected he will support taking away their right to vote for Senators.
Ratified in 1913, the 17th Amendment allows Americans to directly elect their U.S. Senators. Before the Amendment was ratified, state legislatures appointed Senators. Repealing the 17th Amendment would return that power back to state legislatures.
According to the report, Hoekstra said three times during the GOP primary that the 17th Amendment posed a significant threat to states’ rights. When asked for his stance on the issue, Hoekstra said:
“Yeah, because what happens now is that a lot of the stuff where the federal government has assumed power, legislatures are absolutely pissed!…Y’know, so, if a Senator had gone and voted for No Child Left Behind, the legislature would’ve said, ‘Hey man, you ain’t going back!’ In terms of getting back to Constitutional roots, absolutely. It’s one of the unintended consequences of making them popularly elected. Yeah, I think it’d be a good thing.”
Mark Brewer, Chair of the Michigan Democratic Party, had this to say about Hoekstra’s newest extreme position:
“We should be focused on jobs and the economy, not taking away people’s right to vote for their U.S. Senators like Hoekstra proposes. It’s hypocritical that Hoekstra is running for Senate, but would then take away the public’s right to vote for this office if elected. This is just another bizarre idea from an out-of-the mainstream candidate who can’t seem to focus on what people care about — creating jobs and strengthening our middle class.”
Repeal of the 17th Amendment is so far out of the mainstream that even Clark Durant, Hoekstra’s Tea Party primary challenger, said he wouldn’t support repeal. Durant said:
“Without the 17th Amendment, I wouldn’t be standing before you — the voters — to ask for your vote. Instead, a deal would be made behind closed doors and the establishment candidate would have a coronation.”
Hoekstra recently announced his desire to create a federal birther office staffed by FBI and CIA agents that would investigate birth certificates of presidential candidates. Hoekstra has also taken the following positions that would be detrimental to middle-class families:
  • Called equal pay protections for women a “nuisance” and said they should should be repealed,
  • Endorsed Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 tax plan, which would increase taxes on middle-class families by more than $4,000 a year,
  • Co-sponsored six “personhood” bills that would outlaw birth control,
  • Fought for the privatization of Medicare and Social Security,
  • Said he would allow oil drilling in the Great Lakes, and
  • Voted against closing loopholes for corporations that ship American jobs overseas.
Hoekstra started his campaign with the now infamous Super bowl ad that was called “offensive,” “appalling” and “really, really dumb”– and that was by Hoekstra’s fellow Republicans.
Brewer concluded:
“Why do Republicans have such a problem with democracy? First, McCotter’s Congressional staff forges election petitions, then Bolger and Schmidt try to rig an election, next, Ruth Johnson botches the administration of the primary, disenfranchising and confusing thousands of military and non-military voters, and now Hoekstra wants to take away the right to vote for U.S. Senators. A party that doesn’t respect the right to vote doesn’t deserve the support of the voters.”
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