The principles of federalism

Gotta watch out for that overreach stuff. It can get in your clothes and your pipes and your engines and just mess everything up. Like making lynching a federal crime – that would be a terrible reckless thing to do.

Historic legislation that would make lynching a federal hate crime passed the House by near-unanimous consent Wednesday—with four representatives opposing it.

Not because they like lynching – no no. Because they don’t like federal overreach.

Three Republicans voted against the measure: GOP members Ted Yoho of Florida, Louie Gohmert of Texas and Thomas Massie of Kentucky. The chamber’s lone Independent, Justin Amash of Michigan—who famously switched from Republican to Independent over his support for impeaching President Donald Trump—also voted no.

It passed 410 to 4 though.

Although Yoho said he’ll continue to condemn the “horrific act of lynching” and advocate for perpetrators to receive the “harshest penalty under the law,” the retiring congressman also felt the text took away too much power from states and was redundant.

Power to do what? Say that this particular lynching wasn’t a hate crime but a temper tantrum or mistaken identity or purely financially motivated?

“This bill today is an overreach of the federal government and encroaches on the principles of federalism,” the retiring lawmaker told Newsweek in a statement. “Hate crimes fall under the jurisdiction of states, which has led to 46 states producing various hate crime statutes. In my home state of Florida, these crimes are already under state government jurisdiction and are punishable up to death.”

But why not have the whole country on the record? Who is threatened by that?

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