I’m not at the NRA convention this year, but Mitt Romney will be there. His campaign has released excerpts of his speech today:
[T]he principles of our Constitution are enduring and universal . . . they were not designed to bend to the will of presidents and justices who come and go. The belief that we are all created equal, that we are endowed by our Creator with unalienable rights — these are not relics from another time, they reflect truths that are valid in every era.
The framework of law created by the Declaration and the Constitution is the source of our greatness. It has generated unparalleled opportunity and prosperity. Our Founders understood this, which is why they created a system of government that is limited.
This President is moving us away from our Founders’ vision. Instead of limited government, he is leading us toward limited freedom and limited opportunity.
This November, we face a defining decision. I am offering a real choice and a new beginning. I am running for President because I have the experience and the vision to lead us in a different direction. We know what Barack Obama’s vision of America is — we’ve all lived it the last three years. Mine is very different.
My course restores and protects our freedoms. As President, the Constitution would be my guide, and the Declaration of Independence my compass.
Today, I want to talk about this administration’s assault on our freedoms — our economic freedom, our religious freedom, and our personal freedom. And I want to share my plans to return America to the first principles of our founding.
The President’s assault on economic freedom begins with his tax hikes. By their very nature, taxes reduce our freedom. Their only role in a free economy should be to fund services that are absolutely essential, such as national security, education, and the care of those who cannot care for themselves.
And, yet, President Obama has proposed raising the marginal tax rate from 35% to 40%. The Vice President has proposed a new global business tax. Medical device companies are soon to be subject to a new tax on revenues. And the President is now touring the country, touting a new tax on investment and the wealthy. Congress does not need more money to spend; Congress needs to learn to spend less!
This administration’s attack on freedom extends even to rights explicitly guaranteed by our Constitution. The right to bear arms is so plainly stated, so unambiguous, that liberals have a hard time challenging it directly. Instead, they’ve been employing every imaginable ploy to restrict it.
I applaud true conservationists like Rob Keck who work to preserve lands, herds and flocks for hunting. I applaud Ambassador Bolton for opposing international efforts to erode our rights. I applaud Congressman Issa and Senator Grassley for their work in exposing the “Fast and Furious” scandal. And I applaud NRA leadership for being among the first and most vocal in calling upon Attorney General Holder to resign.
We need a President who will enforce current laws, not create new ones that only serve to burden lawful gun owners. President Obama has not; I will.
We need a President who will stand up for the rights of hunters, sportsmen, and those seeking to protect their homes and their families. President Obama has not; I will.
And if we are going to safeguard our Second Amendment, it is time to elect a president who will defend the rights President Obama ignores or minimizes. I will.
In a second term, he would be unrestrained by the demands of reelection. As he told the Russian president last month when he thought no one else was listening, after his re-election he’ll have a lot more, quote, “flexibility” to do what he wants. I’m not exactly sure what he meant by that, but looking at his first three years, I have a very good idea.
Consider the courts. President Obama has an unusual view of the Supreme Court and its responsibilities, as he reminded us just the other day. He said, quote, “I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress.”
Of course, what President Obama calls “extraordinary” and “unprecedented,” the rest of us recognize as “judicial review.” That concept has been a centerpiece of our constitutional system since 1803.
Judicial review requires that the Supreme Court strike down any law that violates the Constitution — the founding document that is the bulwark of our freedoms. But President Obama seems to believe that Court decisions are only legitimate when they rule in his favor, and illegitimate if they don’t. He thinks our nation’s highest court is to be revered and respected — as long as it remains faithful to the original intent of Barack Obama.
That’s the problem with those who view the Constitution as living and evolving, not timeless and defining. They never explain just who will decide what the Constitution means and in which way it will “evolve.”
In his first term, we’ve seen the president try to browbeat the Supreme Court. In a second term, he would remake it. Our freedoms would be in the hands of an Obama Court, not just for four years, but for the next 40. That must not happen.