As most of you are by now aware, those of us that write for Liberty Line are staunch advocates of smaller more limited government. Because of this we predominantly fall toward the Republican Party on most issues. Of the two major political parties in our nation our views more closely align with the principles of the Republican Party. However far too often there comes a time when the GOP leaves us bewildered and amazed. In this case it is Senate Minority Leader Paul McKinley that leaves us scratching our heads. Senator McKinley has repeatedly stated that he believes in small government. That he believes the government of the State of Iowa has grown far too cumbersome to operate efficiently and effectively. However, yesterday the Senator missed a prime opportunity to point out the results of a government that has grown beyond a manageable level.
Yesterday Des Moines Register reporter Jason Clayworth broke a story that exposed the fact that a state agency has declined to enforce sixteen laws duly passed by the general assembly of the State of Iowa. Some of the laws that the Iowa Department of Natural Resources has declined to enforce have been on the books for up to twenty years. I do not want to completely rehash the story, but I will state that I was extremely disappointed in both State Senators quoted in the article. I know that I should not expect any better out of Senator Dennis Black of Jasper County, but I must admit that I was very disappointed when Senator McKinley simply expanded upon the comments made by Senator Black.
Simply stated Senator Black claimed that any state agency that did not enforce the laws passed by the Iowa General Assembly was engaging in illegal activity. While I agree with this sentiment I see the problem from a different perspective. Where Senator Black sees inaction, I see a government so overgrown and bloated that it borders upon being ludicrously ineffective. His solution to the problem is to simply reorganize the bloated beast of government where I see the solution would be to pare the bureaucracy down to a more manageable size by eliminating any unneeded and unnecessary regulations and rules. I have no doubt that I would not be able to convince Senator Black to see things from my point of view, but Senator McKinley on the other hand claims to want to shrink the size of government.
Senator McKinley echoed Senator Black’s comments in regards to the need to reorganize the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. McKinley’s chief argument was that the government of the State of Iowa was not being run properly. However nowhere in Senator McKinley’s argument was there reference made to the idea of alleviating the problem by eliminating unnecessary legislation and regulations. He did not once comment on the idea that a bloated bureaucracy could be the culprit in this instance. Instead he decided that he would rather simply manage the agency in a different fashion.
I really hate to have to critique Republicans. As I stated above, Republicans are supposed to be on our side. However, when Republican leadership makes statements and comments like those made by Senator McKinley one really has to wonder what they are thinking. It forces us to question their dedication to smaller government. And it is actions like those undertaken by Senator McKinley in this instance that has put the Republican Party in the position it is in today. I can only hope that Senator McKinley will learn from the constructive criticism in the wake of this event so that he won’t make the same mistake twice.