BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - A state representative says it's time for Mississippi to tell the federal government to stop overstepping its bounds. Steven Palazzo is the author of House Resolution 69. He says if passed, it would serve as a reminder to Congress and the White House that the United States Constitution reserves certain powers for states.
To get Mississippi's economy moving again, the federal government is sending billions of dollars in stimulus money. However, one Mississippi lawmaker says too often the federal government uses money as a way to meddle in state business, for example, the 50 million dollars the governor rejected because it would require changes in state unemployment law.
"Every time we take a federal dollar from the government there are strings attached, and as a citizenry, we lose certain rights," Representative Steven Palazzo of District 116 said. "We can see it in all the funding mechanisms they have. If we take a dollar for this, they'll tie our hand over here."
Palazzo says for the past 20 years, the country has been moving slowly toward socialism. He says that's why at least 15 other states are considering legislation similar what's in Mississippi House Resolution 69.
"Saying listen, don't forget about the 10th amendment," Palazzo said. "The 10th amendment says if it's not written out and spelled out in the constitution then those powers are left up to the states. One of my colleagues said it best when he said Mississippi governs best when we govern ourselves."
As the federal government divvies out stimulus money to police departments, cities, state agencies and others, Palazzo says where and how to spend the money should have been left up to the states.
"If that money came into the state, the state knows best on where to spend it," said Palazzo. "The federal government does not know what Mississippi's needs are. The governor, lieutenant governor, house of Representatives and the state senate, we know what our needs our because we come from every community throughout the state of Mississippi. If we mess it up, we can get unelected very quick."
Palazzo says the skyrocketing deficit, the government forcing banks to make loans to people with bad credit and proposed federal legislation to expand unions are some of the other reasons he drafted the resolution.