By Bradley Harrington
“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.” — James Madison, “The Tenth Amendment of the Bill of Rights,” 1791 —
I evaluate political candidates according to one simple standard: Their commitment to the principles of individual liberty. And, when it comes to the Wyoming Governor’s race, there’s only one candidate worth talking about in that regard: Taylor Haynes.
I’ve already discussed just a few of the problems with the other five candidates vying for the Republican gubernatorial nomination — positional inconsistencies, slopping at the public trough and inabilities to understand just what true constitutional government consists of, to name a few (“Most gubernatorial aspirers don’t clear the liberty hurdle,” WTE, July 8).
Haynes, however, suffers from none of those flaws — and, when he says he intends to “promote Wyoming’s sovereignty and the absolute need to establish a constitutional relationship with the federal government” (www.taylorhaynesforgovernor.com), he’s not kidding.
Moreover, as I’ve discussed before (“Fedzilla’s land grabs, Parts I and Parts II,” WTE, July 29 and Aug. 5, 2016), from the time of the 2nd Continental Congress’s Northwest Ordinance (ratified in 1787, and reaffirmed by the U.S. Congress in 1789), that means all new states were to be admitted to the Union on an “equal footing with the original States in all respects whatever.”
Which means: “Since the original states maintained control of their lands even after the founding (with the exceptions enumerated in the Enclave Clause), it therefore follows that any new states, once admitted to the Union, should have its previously federally managed territories turned over to it as well.” (“Part II.”)
Yet, this never happened, either here or in any other Western state — and, to this day, the federal government “manages” 48.4 percent of Wyoming.
This has been Wyoming’s biggest problem since the beginning — and, as Haynes puts it, this is an issue of “federal interference in our individual liberty, in our schools and in managing our natural resources … They control those resources and our mineral wealth.” (“Taylor Haynes interview,” July 9.)
And the implications? ““Let’s say I come into your business and take over half of it,” Haynes said. “I take half of your income and half of your wealth. And then I also restrict what you can do in your own yard. So, if I do that, how free are you?”
How free, indeed? Not very free at all … And yet, of all the candidates running, Haynes is the only one who recognizes these facts and seeks to correct them.
“I’m not against the federal government, per se,” Haynes stressed. “But they need to respect the bright line of jurisdiction that’s strong in the Constitution — and they need to act only on their enumerated powers.”
Regarding the rest of his Republican competitors, however, Haynes continued, “when it comes to the test of enforcing the Constitution, the other candidates back down. They back down on the 2nd Amendment at the University of Wyoming, and they all express that they will not take over management of the federal lands.”
“Hageman claims to differ in that respect,” I said.
“Well, she doesn’t,” Haynes replied. “She wants to ask for permission to manage a million acres. So, I’m running your company and I’ve taken over 48.4 percent of it. And then you come to me, hat in hand, to ask for permission to manage 1 percent of your own company? Really?”
And that, said Haynes, is what brought him to decide to run again for the seat he ran for back in both 2010 and 2014: “I feel like I’m trapped and I had to run one more time, because of that — because there’s nobody else in this race who’s truly constitutional whatsoever.”
And, it bears mentioning, Haynes had a quite respectable showing back in 2014: He earned 31,532 votes to Matt Mead’s 53,673 — and that was against an incumbent Governor, and a fairly popular one at that, even with contender Cindy Hill splitting the “hard” conservative vote (she cleared 12,464).
Well, it’s a safe bet that the people who voted for Haynes back then will vote for him again — and, with little more than statist political hacks standing in his way this time, Haynes is well-poised to clear the votes he needs to put Wyoming on the path to the sovereignty and prosperity she deserves.
And, Dear Readers, as I survey the mess the “establishment” has made of Wyoming over the years, it’s also something she NEEDS — and now more than ever.
Bradley Harrington is a computer technician and a writer who lives in Cheyenne. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
NOTE: This column was originally published in the Wyoming Tribune Eagle on July 15, 2018. Here is this column’s original downloadable PDF file.