Why is Louie Gohmert challenging Boehner for Speaker of the House?

Rep. Louis Gohmert (R-TX) announced Sunday that he planned to challenge House Speaker John Boehner for the top spot in Congress. Hot on the heels of his announcement, Louie joined Glenn on radio to talk about why he was running and the risks he faces if he loses.

Louie explained that there were many representatives telling their constituents that they had to vote for Boehner because there was no other option.

"I was persuaded. I'll be the sacrificial lamb. I will get out there. But it's not just me. There are others. But people have got a choice now. And those people that have been telling their constituents in the past, 'Well, gee, I would not have voted for Boehner, but nobody ran against him.' Well, now somebody is. And if we get 29 votes or more, then there will be a second ballot. And we will have a chance to change our leadership," Louie explained.

Louie explained he didn't run back in November because Boehner said all the right things after the election.

"Our speaker went out and said, 'We're gonna fight tooth and nail against the president's illegal amnesty.' He said all the right things. And you know, you want to believe somebody wouldn't go out that boldly if they didn't intend to follow that," Louie said.

Louie pointed to the CROmnibus as a major factor in his decision to run as well.

"I want you to call your congressman and you hold their feet to the fire. Do not vote for John Boehner," Glenn said. "It is time. You have a chance. I need to you hear me carefully. You think that you have lost. You feel beaten up. You feel like you can't make a difference. You have a chance. There are these sign posts that come up from time to time. This is one of them. Let's nail this one. Call 202-224-3121. Talk to your Congressman. Tell them to vote for Louie Gohmert. More importantly, tell them that if they vote for John Boehner, you're done with them. 202-224-3121."

Below is a rough transcript of this segment:

GLENN: Welcome to the program. Louie Gohmert, Congressman who is now running for Speaker of the House, against John Boehner. How are you doing, sir?

GOHMERT: As far as I know, I'm okay, Glenn, thank you.

GLENN: I would -- I know you didn't take this on lightly because we've asked you, you know, if you would do this in the past. And you have said no.

GOHMERT: Well, it was other members saying, Louie, you are the only one that can really do this and get the outside groups going. And I -- I was saying, guys, you've heard me chastised our members. I just -- you know, you saw the results of the RSC race and they said, this is a different race. We've got to get 29-plus, and anyway, I was persuaded, okay. I'll be the sacrificial lamb. I will get out there and -- but it's not just me. There are others. But people have got a choice now. And those people that have been faith telling their constituents in the past, well, gee, I would not have voted for Boehner, but nobody ran against him. Well, now somebody is. And if we get 29 votes or more, then there will be a second ballot. And we will have a chance to change our leadership. But Glenn, you know, some people have said, well, why didn't somebody run, why didn't you run back in November? Well, we had just had a massive election. And our speaker went out and said, we're gonna fight tooth and nail against the president's illegal amnesty. He said all the right things. And you know, you want to believe somebody wouldn't go out that boldly if they didn't intend to follow that. But now -- oh, and we're -- we promised we would fight against ObamaCare. Glenn, we just funded ObamaCare with the navigators, more IRS, all of that. We've already funded that through this whole year. That was in the CROmnibus. No wonder Obama was willing to make our calls and get people lobbied up to vote for a Boehner deal. It was a bad deal. And then of course the promise, oh, yeah, but we kept the budget for DHS, Homeland Security, that is, held that out for leverage. That's the one hostage that the president wouldn't mind us shooting. Can you -- I don't see how this plays out. Our speaker says, okay, Mr. President, if you don't stop your illegal amnesty, we're not going to fund the border patrol and the border will be wide open. Okay. I mean, that's -- we gave away the leverage of everything the president cares about in the CROmnibus and that's why so many Republicans simply could not vote for it.

GLENN: Okay. So tell me how this process works. Because do you even have a shot, is there a chance that somebody worse than John Boehner -- Nancy Pelosi, I mean, tell me how this works.

GOHMERT: Thank you for asking that. That is a piece of misinformation that people have used saying, well, anybody that does not vote for Boehner is going to give the gavel to Nancy Pelosi. Glenn, that cannot happen unless 59 Republicans vote present. Only if 59 Republicans vote present can Nancy Pelosi have a chance at all. So anybody that votes present, they're helping Boehner and Pelosi by lowering the number that you have to get to get a majority. But the rules of the house, going back to Thomas Jefferson's rules of the house, they are very clear. A candidate must get a majority of all of those on the House floor voting for a person. It doesn't have to be a member of Congress, but it does need to be an American citizen and adult. Anybody is eligible that is. And so you don't have to be nominated for your vote to count. But as long as the Republican members vote for a person, even if it's not me or Ted Yo-ho, some are saying they'd like Dan Webster. I said I could vote for Dan. But as long as they vote for a person, then Pelosi can never become Speaker because she's got 188 votes max. She can't overcome the necessary 218 to win.

GLENN: Here's the scary thing. I know your system well enough to know -- I mean, you're toast. If you don't win, you're toast. And that's exactly what they're going to be saying. That's what Boehner is saying to everybody right now. Listen, you don't vote for me. You don't play ball with me now. You're not getting on any committee. You're not going to --

GOHMERT: Yes.

GLENN: You're not going to be heard from again. How do you make sure that those who tend to lack essentials in their underpants actually step to the plate here and do the right thing?

GOHMERT: Well, I think you're gonna have a lot of members that hear from their constituents that, hey, we're the ones that elected you, not John Boehner. But I tell you what, Glenn, there is some real intimidation going on. Apparently this morning there was a statement released by Boehner's people saying David Brat was going to vote for him. And I think probably intimidation involves, we're going to get families out there of people who may not vote for us but when we see in print that we're counting on them voting for us, they'll be afraid not to vote for Boehner and unfortunately for Boehner, the David Brat had a piece out this morning saying he's not voting for Boehner. So I don't think the speaker can actually trust his whip count. But Glenn, you and I have talked on the air, off the air enough. We both have our accountability to the same place. And it's not to the Speaker of the House. I know a few years ago, one of our members in a very contested situation said to the speaker, hey, you're our shepherd. We're your sheep. Tell us what we should do. I said, look, I've got two shepherds. One is my heavenly shepard herd and the other is my 700,000 constituents in east Texas and you're not in neither one of those categories. We can look to leadership for guidance, but our ultimate responsibility is to on Maker and those who sent us here.

GLENN: tell me --

GOHMERT: There's a lot at stake if we don't do this. One more thing. They're using intimidation saying 'gee, you're going to cost us the 2016 election by creating controversy.' No, the controversy is there. And in fact he was there last night weighing -- figuring through his numbers the polling data, that they just bid, 25 to 33% of Republicans and independents that voted Republican in 2014 are ready to walk away.

GLENN: Already have. Let me tell you something. I am so sick and tired -- who was it that said, you or Ted Cruz, somebody said, it's always the next time.

GOHMERT: Yeah.

GLENN: It's always next time.

GOHMERT: That's all we hear.

GLENN: We can't do it this time because of the next election. But as soon as that election is over, we'll do it the next time. I've had enough. I've had enough. And I think America has had enough.

GOHMERT: We've been hearing that for nine years.

GLENN: Done House Speaker Boehner was elected majority leader in early 2008. And he said, look, this is perfect. This is only about 10 or 11 months. You vote for me now. You'll find out if I'm the leader you need by November. And on election night in November, we lost the majority. That was -- I'm sorry. That wasn't -- that was '06. And then November of '06 the night of the election, while most of us were sick to our stomachs to think of all the different people, Democrats that would be holding gavels and controlling Congress, one person wasn't thinking about that and that was our current Speaker calling and saying, hey, this wasn't a full two years. You got to give me a full two-year term. And 2008 didn't go all that well for us either. And the only reason they won the majority in 2010 was not because of our leadership. It was because the Democrats made people so mad it's in spite of the leadership. Let me give the number. Call the switchboard. I want you to call your congressman and you hold their feet to the fire. Do not vote for John Boehner. It is time -- you have a chance. I need to you hear me carefully. You think that you have lost. You feel beaten up. You feel like you can't make a difference. You have a chance. There are these sign posts that come up from time to time. This is one of them. Let's nail this one. Call 202-224-3121. Talk to your Congressman. Tell them to vote for Louie Gohmert. More importantly, tell them that if they vote for John Boehner, you're done with them. 202-224-3121. Louie, you're Speaker of the House. Tell me how things change. What do you do?

GOHMERT: We start using, as was promised, every weapon at our disposal to stop the illegal and unconstitutional amnesty. We secure the border. We make it clear to the president, yes, we know, we need immigration reform, but we're not changing anything until you secure the border and here's the money to do it and you're not -- we're defunding your czars, we're defunding everything that means anything to you that America doesn't need. We're defunding all of these things unless you secure the border. And until you secure the border, as confirmed by unanimous border states, we're not doing immigration reform. Then we decentralize the Speaker's power. That's a problem. It's a monopoly. You only getting one vote on the steering committee, not four or five. We get in high gear and we finish all investigations. We hold groups and agencies and departments accountable for wrongdoing. We throw out the current tax code. I want a flat tax. Someone a fair tax, a sales tax. Let's have that debate. We throw out the code. And then we go with whichever wins, fair tax or flat tax. We end the automatic increase every stinking year in every federal department and agency's budget. Nobody else gets that. The government shouldn't either. We stop the government spying on American people. We create some reform in our committee structure. We kind of have a public assistance committee or subcommittee that has every single piece of welfare in it. That's how we've been beat for 40 years, is because if you say, wait, I don't think we ought to fund this program. It's duplicitous. There's too many like it. It's weighs. Then they say you hate children or women or veterans. No, we don't, we love them all but we don't need 87 agencies doing the same thing. We create an energy policy that does not provide any subsidies for any energy. Let's let the market tell us which energy to use. We have competitive groups scoring our bills. We end the CBO monopoly of scores. We get screwed by them virtually every time. We force removal of at least two-thirds of the regulations. Reagan forced Congress to do it and he had a democratic Congress. And this is a biggie. Every two years instead of having -- before we have a speaker's election, the party in power has a vote of confidence or no confidence. And if the speaker get as no confidence vote, he can't run and we get a new speaker. That's the way it ought to be, so that we don't have a dictatorship in Congress.

GLENN: Well, I think those sound like a good start. Louie, I thank you for your service. I thank you for your loyalty to your constituents and to God and the Constitution. I Washington you the best of luck. Thank you so much, Louie.

GOHMERT: Glenn, thanks so much for your friendship.

Front page image courtesy of the AP.

From the moment the 33-year-old Thomas Jefferson arrived at the Continental Congress in Philadelphia in 1776, he was on the radical side. That caused John Adams to like him immediately. Then the Congress stuck Jefferson and Adams together on the five-man committee to write a formal statement justifying a break with Great Britain, and their mutual admiration society began.

Jefferson thought Adams should write the Declaration. But Adams protested, saying, “It can't come from me because I'm obnoxious and disliked." Adams reasoned that Jefferson was not obnoxious or disliked, therefore he should write it. Plus, he flattered Jefferson, by telling him he was a great writer. It was a master class in passing the buck.

So, over the next 17 days, Jefferson holed up in his room, applying his lawyer skills to the ideas of the Enlightenment. He borrowed freely from existing documents like the Virginia Declaration of Rights. He later wrote that “he was not striving for originality of principle or sentiment." Instead, he hoped his words served as “an expression of the American mind."

It's safe to say he achieved his goal.

The five-man committee changed about 25 percent of Jefferson's first draft of the Declaration before submitting it to Congress. Then, Congress altered about one-fifth of that draft. But most of the final Declaration's words are Jefferson's, including the most famous passage — the Preamble — which Congress left intact. The result is nothing less than America's mission statement, the words that ultimately bind the nation together. And words that we desperately need to rediscover because of our boiling partisan rage.

The Declaration is brilliant in structure and purpose. It was designed for multiple audiences: the King of Great Britain, the colonists, and the world. And it was designed for multiple purposes: rallying the troops, gaining foreign allies, and announcing the creation of a new country.

The Declaration is structured in five sections: the Introduction, Preamble, the Body composed of two parts, and the Conclusion. It's basically the most genius breakup letter ever written.

In the Introduction, step 1 is the notificationI think we need to break up. And to be fair, I feel I owe you an explanation...

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another…

The Continental Congress felt they were entitled by “the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God" to “dissolve the political bands," but they needed to prove the legitimacy of their cause. They were defying the world's most powerful nation and needed to motivate foreign allies to join the effort. So, they set their struggle within the entire “Course of human events." They're saying, this is no petty political spat — this is a major event in world history.

Step 2 is declaring what you believe in, your standardsHere's what I'm looking for in a healthy relationship...

This is the most famous part of the Declaration; the part school children recite — the Preamble:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

That's as much as many Americans know of the Declaration. But the Preamble is the DNA of our nation, and it really needs to be taken as a whole:

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

The Preamble takes us through a logical progression: All men are created equal; God gives all humans certain inherent rights that cannot be denied; these include the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; to protect those rights, we have governments set up; but when a government fails to protect our inherent rights, people have the right to change or replace it.

Government is only there to protect the rights of mankind. They don't have any power unless we give it to them. That was an extraordinarily radical concept then and we're drifting away from it now.

The Preamble is the justification for revolution. But note how they don't mention Great Britain yet. And again, note how they frame it within a universal context. These are fundamental principles, not just squabbling between neighbors. These are the principles that make the Declaration just as relevant today. It's not just a dusty parchment that applied in 1776.

Step 3 is laying out your caseHere's why things didn't work out between us. It's not me, it's you...

This is Part 1 of the Body of the Declaration. It's the section where Jefferson gets to flex his lawyer muscles by listing 27 grievances against the British crown. This is the specific proof of their right to rebellion:

He has obstructed the administration of justice...

For imposing taxes on us without our consent...

For suspending our own legislatures...

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us...

Again, Congress presented these “causes which impel them to separation" in universal terms to appeal to an international audience. It's like they were saying, by joining our fight you'll be joining mankind's overall fight against tyranny.

Step 4 is demonstrating the actions you took I really tried to make this relationship work, and here's how...

This is Part 2 of the Body. It explains how the colonists attempted to plead their case directly to the British people, only to have the door slammed in their face:

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury...

They too have been deaf to the voice of justice... We must, therefore... hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

This basically wrapped up America's argument for independence — we haven't been treated justly, we tried to talk to you about it, but since you refuse to listen and things are only getting worse, we're done here.

Step 5 is stating your intent — So, I think it's best if we go our separate ways. And my decision is final...

This is the powerful Conclusion. If people know any part of the Declaration besides the Preamble, this is it:

...that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved...

They left no room for doubt. The relationship was over, and America was going to reboot, on its own, with all the rights of an independent nation.

And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The message was clear — this was no pitchfork mob. These were serious men who had carefully thought through the issues before taking action. They were putting everything on the line for this cause.

The Declaration of Independence is a landmark in the history of democracy because it was the first formal statement of a people announcing their right to choose their own government. That seems so obvious to us now, but in 1776 it was radical and unprecedented.

In 1825, Jefferson wrote that the purpose of the Declaration was “not to find out new principles, or new arguments, never before thought of… but to place before mankind the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and firm… to justify ourselves in the independent stand we are compelled to take."

You're not going to do better than the Declaration of Independence. Sure, it worked as a means of breaking away from Great Britain, but its genius is that its principles of equality, inherent rights, and self-government work for all time — as long as we actually know and pursue those principles.

On June 7, 1776, the Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia at the Pennsylvania State House, better known today as Independence Hall. Virginia delegate Richard Henry Lee introduced a motion calling for the colonies' independence. The “Lee Resolution" was short and sweet:

Resolved, That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.

Intense debate followed, and the Congress voted 7 to 5 (with New York abstaining) to postpone a vote on Lee's Resolution. They called a recess for three weeks. In the meantime, the delegates felt they needed to explain what they were doing in writing. So, before the recess, they appointed a five-man committee to come up with a formal statement justifying a break with Great Britain. They appointed two men from New England — Roger Sherman and John Adams; two from the middle colonies — Robert Livingston and Benjamin Franklin; and one Southerner — Thomas Jefferson. The responsibility for writing what would become the Declaration of Independence fell to Jefferson.

In the rotunda of the National Archives building in Washington, D.C., there are three original documents on permanent display: the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence. These are the three pillars of the United States, yet America barely seems to know them anymore. We need to get reacquainted — quickly.

In a letter to his friend John Adams in 1816, Jefferson wrote: “I like the dreams of the future, better than the history of the past."

America used to be a forward-looking nation of dreamers. We still are in spots, but the national attitude that we hear broadcast loudest across media is not looking toward the future with optimism and hope. In late 2017, a national poll found 59% of Americans think we are currently at the “lowest point in our nation's history that they can remember."

America spends far too much time looking to the past for blame and excuse. And let's be honest, even the Right is often more concerned with “owning the left" than helping point anyone toward the practical principles of the Declaration of Independence. America has clearly lost touch with who we are as a nation. We have a national identity crisis.

The Declaration of Independence is America's thesis statement, and without it America doesn't exist.

It is urgent that we get reacquainted with the Declaration of Independence because postmodernism would have us believe that we've evolved beyond the America of our founding documents, and thus they're irrelevant to the present and the future. But the Declaration of Independence is America's thesis statement, and without it America doesn't exist.

Today, much of the nation is so addicted to partisan indignation that "day-to-day" indignation isn't enough to feed the addiction. So, we're reaching into America's past to help us get our fix. In 2016, Democrats in the Louisiana state legislature tabled a bill that would have required fourth through sixth graders to recite the opening lines of the Declaration. They didn't table it because they thought it would be too difficult or too patriotic. They tabled it because the requirement would include the phrase “all men are created equal" and the progressives in the Louisiana legislature didn't want the children to have to recite a lie. Representative Barbara Norton said, “One thing that I do know is, all men are not created equal. When I think back in 1776, July the fourth, African Americans were slaves. And for you to bring a bill to request that our children will recite the Declaration, I think it's a little bit unfair to us. To ask our children to recite something that's not the truth. And for you to ask those children to repeat the Declaration stating that all men's are free. I think that's unfair."

Remarkable — an elected representative saying it wouldn't be fair for students to have to recite the Declaration because “all men are not created equal." Another Louisiana Democrat explained that the government born out of the Declaration “was used against races of people." I guess they missed that part in school where they might have learned that the same government later made slavery illegal and amended the Constitution to guarantee all men equal protection under the law. The 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments were an admission of guilt by the nation regarding slavery, and an effort to right the wrongs.

Yet, the progressive logic goes something like this: many of the men who signed the Declaration of Independence, including Thomas Jefferson who wrote it, owned slaves; slavery is evil; therefore, the Declaration of Independence is not valid because it was created by evil slave owners.

It's a sad reality that the left has a very hard time appreciating the universal merits of the Declaration of Independence because they're so hung up on the long-dead issue of slavery. And just to be clear — because people love to take things out of context — of course slavery was horrible. Yes, it is a total stain on our history. But defending the Declaration of Independence is not an effort to excuse any aspect of slavery.

Okay then, people might say, how could the Founders approve the phrase “All men are created equal," when many of them owned slaves? How did they miss that?

They didn't miss it. In fact, Thomas Jefferson included an anti-slavery passage in his first draft of the Declaration. The paragraph blasted King George for condoning slavery and preventing the American Colonies from passing legislation to ban slavery:

He has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating its most sacred rights to life and liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating and carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere... Determined to keep open a market where men should be bought and sold, he has prostituted his negative for suppressing every legislative attempt to prohibit or to restrain this execrable commerce.

We don't say “execrable" that much anymore. It means, utterly detestable, abominable, abhorrent — basically very bad.

Jefferson was upset when Georgia and North Carolina threw up the biggest resistance to that paragraph. Ultimately, those two states twisted Congress' arm to delete the paragraph.

Still, how could a man calling the slave trade “execrable" be a slaveowner himself? No doubt about it, Jefferson was a flawed human being. He even had slaves from his estate in Virginia attending him while he was in Philadelphia, in the very apartment where he was writing the Declaration.

Many of the Southern Founders deeply believed in the principles of the Declaration yet couldn't bring themselves to upend the basis of their livelihood. By 1806, Virginia law made it more difficult for slave owners to free their slaves, especially if the owner had significant debts as Jefferson did.

At the same time, the Founders were not idiots. They understood the ramifications of signing on to the principles described so eloquently in the Declaration. They understood that logically, slavery would eventually have to be abolished in America because it was unjust, and the words they were committing to paper said as much. Remember, John Adams was on the committee of five that worked on the Declaration and he later said that the Revolution would never be complete until the slaves were free.

Also, the same generation that signed the Declaration started the process of abolition by banning the importation of slaves in 1807. Jefferson was President at the time and he urged Congress to pass the law.

America has an obvious road map that, as a nation, we're not consulting often enough.

The Declaration took a major step toward crippling the institution of slavery. It made the argument for the first time about the fundamental rights of all humans which completely undermined slavery. Planting the seeds to end slavery is not nearly commendable enough for leftist critics, but you can't discount the fact that the seeds were planted. It's like they started an expiration clock for slavery by approving the Declaration. Everything that happened almost a century later to end slavery, and then a century after that with the Civil Rights movement, flowed from the principles voiced in the Declaration.

Ironically for a movement that calls itself progressive, it is obsessed with retrying and judging the past over and over. Progressives consider this a better use of time than actually putting past abuses in the rearview and striving not to be defined by ancestral failures.

It can be very constructive to look to the past, but not when it's used to flog each other in the present. Examining history is useful in providing a road map for the future. And America has an obvious road map that, as a nation, we're not consulting often enough. But it's right there, the original, under glass. The ink is fading, but the words won't die — as long as we continue to discuss them.

'Good Morning Texas' gives exclusive preview of Mercury One museum

Screen shot from Good Morning Texas

Mercury One is holding a special exhibition over the 4th of July weekend, using hundreds of artifacts, documents and augmented reality experiences to showcase the history of slavery — including slavery today — and a path forward. Good Morning Texas reporter Paige McCoy Smith went through the exhibit for an exclusive preview with Mercury One's chief operating officer Michael Little on Tuesday.

Watch the video below to see the full preview.

Click here to purchase tickets to the museum (running from July 4 - 7).

Over the weekend, journalist Andy Ngo and several other apparent right-leaning people were brutally beaten by masked-gangs of Antifa protesters in Portland, Oregon. Short for "antifascist," Antifa claims to be fighting for social justice and tolerance — by forcibly and violently silencing anyone with opposing opinions. Ngo, who was kicked, punched, and sprayed with an unknown substance, is currently still in the hospital with a "brain bleed" as a result of the savage attack. Watch the video to get the details from Glenn.