Mike Lee for US Senate
GLENN: So I talked to a guy named Mike Lee from Utah last week. He is running for Bob Bennett's seat in Utah, which... (applause)
PAT: God bless you, Mike.
GLENN: I may vote for a mouse over Bob Bennett.
PAT: Oh, man.
GLENN: But so he's running for Bob Bennett's seat and I was going over the news today and I saw that
PAT: It's not Bob Bennett's seat. It's the people's seat.
GLENN: The people's seat, yes. So anyway, I saw that illegals now in Arizona are saying, that's fine, we'll just leave Arizona and we'll go to Utah. Mike Lee is now in Utah. Mike, welcome to the program.
LEE: Thank you, Glenn. It's good to be with you.
GLENN: When I talked to you last week, we talked about the Constitution and I wanted to know what you knew about the Constitution, and you told me what?
LEE: I told you, well, it's the law of the land and it's what protects our liberty by setting limits on federal power and that national governments become abusive of power whenever their power is unlimited. That's why it's important to recognize those limits. If those limits disappear when members of congress stop reading it and instead point across the street to the Supreme Court and say, "They said we could get away with it, they said we could regulate just about anything we want."
GLENN: You said, and I really liked this line, you said to me that just because they said so doesn't mean it's so. Explain.
LEE: Well, one of the powers that congress has is the authority to regulate interstate commerce. And since about 1942, Supreme Court has said that congress can regulate just about any activity that measured in the aggregate substantially affects interstate commerce, replicated across every state, that's legalese for they can regulate anything they want. Now, the problem is every senator and every congressman has to take an oath to the Constitution. In my mind that means more than simply an oath to doing whatever you can get away with in court. That means you are taking an oath to the words themselves. But just because the Supreme Court says you can do it doesn't necessarily mean it's constitutional because not every entry to the Constitution, not every excess of power under the Constitution can be remedied in court or will be. There are limits to what the Courts practically can or will do.
GLENN: Well, I mean, and the Court doesn't have a history of being wrong in any place big, Jim Crow. I mean, the Jim Crow laws went through the Supreme Court.
LEE: Exactly. And if people at every level of government, in every department of government would simply think through what they're doing and saying, regardless of what the courts will put up with as far as excesses of power under the Constitution, what is it that I'm supposed to be doing in order to make the constitutional system work?
GLENN: Okay. So let me ask you now, let me go to Arizona because you're going to see an influx of illegal immigrants into Utah now. I mean, it's in the Arizona papers and everything today. They're just saying, well, we'll just go. Is what Arizona is doing in your opinion, is it constitutional?
LEE: Well, let me put it this way. It is entirely understandable what Arizona's doing. Arizona's been put in a terrible position by a federal government that has been so busy bailing out failing banks and failing automobile companies and trying to nationalize our healthcare system, trying to require us to buy a specific type of insurance policy that we may not want to buy under penalty of federal law that it has stopped doing the few things that it is authorized to do, that it is supposed to do like immigration. Article I, Section 8, Clause 4 gives that power to congress. And so, you know, government
GLENN: But wouldn't that make this then unconstitutional because if that is a federal law, how is the state taking that?
LEE: Well, there's nothing in the Constitution that affirmatively prohibits the states from doing anything related to immigration. The constitution gives congress the power to establish uniform laws governing naturalization. It doesn't prohibit the states from doing anything that might relate to that and so I
GLENN: So in other words, to enforce it.
LEE: Yeah, to enforce it or to take matters into their own hands when the federal government's not doing its job.
GLENN: Here's the I mean, I thought the court ruling of the Constitution is not a suicide packet makes sense on the state level. I mean, these states are being asked to commit suicide. They cannot afford the services that they are having to provide to illegal aliens, A; B, their citizens are now being killed. Arizona has the second highest kidnapping rate in the world. The Constitution is not a suicide packet.
LEE: Indeed. I would agree. This is the perfect example of the observation I often make which is that governments are like teenagers. They get into trouble the most when they stop doing the few things that they are supposed to do. When they stop doing their chores, stop doing their homework, they stop focusing on those few powers that have been given to them, that's when they get into trouble.
LEE: They are focused on other things.
GLENN: Mike, what would you do? Would you vote for amnesty?
LEE: Heavens no. You don't want to reward those people who have been breaking the law or else you'll just encourage a whole new wave of law breakers.
GLENN: But why the hate?
LEE: You know, it's not hate, Glenn. It's love. It's love for those who have come here the right way and it's love for the process and for the system that has made America great. We want immigrants to continue coming to this country and we want those immigrants to come here through the front door.
GLENN: I would go a step
LEE: The right way.
GLENN: I would just go a step further. It is love for the Mexicans and anybody else that is trying to escape corruption and blight by making sure that our system doesn't turn into their system, but
GLENN: So how are the poll numbers with you?
LEE: Well, the poll numbers are great. We're very confident. There is a Salt Lake Tribune poll that was just released that shows me with 37% of the vote and shows Senator Bennett at about 16%.
PAT: He's actually running third in the race, isn't he?
PAT: Which is fantastic.
GLENN: So make, let me ask you a question. Are you familiar how I feel about progressives?
LEE: I have a pretty good idea, yes.
GLENN: And Woodrow Wilson?
GLENN: You know, Utah has played a really nasty role in the history of our country when it comes to really bad decisions. We had the Smoot Hawley Act which really was the reason that brought on the Great Depression, Smoot Hawley from Utah. We have Harry Reid. So do I need more?
LEE: Pretty much for Harry Reid, it was Nevada who elected Harry Reid.
GLENN: Yeah, but still.
PAT: Bob Bennett.
GLENN: You have Bob Bennett. You have a guy who looked me in the eye, a guy who looked me in the eye and said, "You know what, Cass Sunstein, he told me that this was all academic stuff. I mean, I looked him in the eye, Glenn, and Cass Sunstein, that's all academic." Cass Sunstein's going to be the most dangerous man in America when it all is said and done. Are you going to, are you going to keep your soul? Are you going to can you go to Washington and keep your soul and not be part of the problem?
LEE: Yes. Yes, I can, Glenn, and I will. And what will enable me to do that is that I'll focus on principles that don't change because they are not supposed to change. You know, the winds of political change are all around us. They are as ubiquitous as they are unmistakable. But there are some things that are supposed to change not at all, not ever, and those things are embodied in our Constitution. Now, you can change it, but it is by design very difficult to change because it's not supposed to.
GLENN: But what do you say to the people? Because freshmen come in and they say, look, man, you just need to play by the rules here on this one, we just need you to do this one because if not, you are going to be blocked out and you are going to get the robocalls and the unions are going to come after you and you are just not going to be able to survive; you just need to make this one happen. What do you say?
LEE: Well, I'm willing to play by the rules but I'm going to play by a different set of rules than they are going to prescribe for me. I'm going to play by a 223 year old's rule book that we all have taken an oath to support, and everyone in the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives has taken an oath to support. And if we look to those words, they will tell us what it is that we're supposed to be doing and, more importantly, what it is that we're not supposed to be doing. The Constitution is a list of thou shalt nots to the government. It is more of a power remover than it is a power giver, and it needs to be read and understood as such. The more that principle catches on, that principle which has not changed from the beginning of our republic, the more we will be able to restore the greatness of our country.
GLENN: Well, that's what the president has a problem with the Constitution. He says it's a charter of negative liberties and it should be a charter of positive liberties.
LEE: Yeah, and he misses the boat because he's missing the fact that government acts only at the expense of individual liberty. Every time government acts, it diminishes individual liberty to that very same degree. Now, sometimes that's worth it as when the government protects us from attack from outside the United States, for example, or when it protects our property, but we have to take that balancing test every single time government acts. And when it's the federal government acting, we have to make sure that not only is government acting to protect and preserve life, liberty and property, but it has to be doing so in a way that's consistent with congress' decidedly limited powers granted by the Constitution.
GLENN: I have to ask you this question. Are you a 9/11 Truther?
GLENN: You don't think that George Bush, Dick Cheney got in their frogmen outfits and swam across the East River and then got into the World Trade Center and dynamited the place?
LEE: No, I don't.
PAT: Why are you asking these trick questions?
GLENN: I know, I
PAT: Are you a shill for Bob Bennett?
PAT: Is that what you are?
GLENN: I just was hoping to trip him up on that very complex
PAT: Are you a shill for
GLENN: Does steel melt? Mike, does steel melt?
LEE: I believe steel melts.
GLENN: Notice the pause there. He was calculating.
PAT: He was thinking.
GLENN: He was calculating. Mike
LEE: I don't know that I've ever personally melted steel but, you know, I've watched it happen.
GLENN: Yeah, you've seen it happen in the big huge pots?
GLENN: Because Rosie O'Donnell says it doesn't melt but that's a different story. Mike, thank you very much. When's the election? Next Tuesday?
LEE: Well, the Utah state convention
PAT: The convention is coming up.
LEE: is on May 8th, a week from Saturday.
PAT: Now, you need 60% of the delegates to win this thing and end it, right? But other than that, it will go to the primary in June, is it?
LEE: Yes, that's right.
GLENN: Best of luck.
LEE: Thank you very much.
GLENN: Thanks, Mike. You bet, bye bye.