OREGON GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE OPPOSES FEDERALIZING THE NATIONAL GUARD
Posted 1:00 AM Eastern
SALEM, Oregon --Mary Starrett, who's running for Governor of Oregon on the Constitution Party ticket, is warning governors all across the country that the proposed congressional bill to federalize state National Guard units is a bad idea.
According to Starrett, passage of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2007 would infringe on state control of the National Guard, in essence creating a de facto domestic military controlled by whomever sits in the Oval Office.
The proposed National Guard law would allow the president to take control of the National Guard in any state during emergencies without gubernatorial consent. The idea, spurred by the chaos after Hurricane Katrina's landfall in Louisiana and Mississippi, is part of a House-passed version of the National Defense Authorization Act. The Senate has not passed it.
Upon learning of the proposed legislation, twenty-four members of the National Governors Association, including New Hampshire's Gov. John Lynch, wrote to the members of the US House Armed Services Committee to express their concerns.
In the letter, they told the committee members, "The nation's governors feel very strongly about protecting our constitutional responsibility to take care of our citizens, and do not want that responsibility shifted to federal officials."
Meanwhile, Starrett said, "The governors are correct in decrying this attempted power grab by the federal government. However, this is old news -- there are tens of thousands of National Guard troops fighting and dying today in undeclared foreign wars. We need to put an end to this tragic abuse of our citizen soldiers."
The former TV news anchor and radio talk show host points to Article 1, Section 8 of the US Constitution, which prohibits the President from calling up a state's National Guard. Only the Congress has that authority -- and even then only to "execute the laws of the union, suppress insurrections and repel invasions," she said.
"Clearly, this does not include suppressing insurrections or repelling invasions in other people's countries. Which means the National Guard troops have been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan illegally. It is time to bring them home!" she added.
"This increasing centralization of power in Washington, DC, is in direct conflict with our constitutional principles of limiting the power of the federal government and keeping power in the hands of the states, the local communities and the people." Starrett said.
Starrett then took a shot at her opponents, criticizing Democrat Ted Kulongoski and Republican Ron Saxton over the continued abuse of Oregon National Guard troops and their silence, which she characterized as being "absolutely deafening."
Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, Mary Starrett worked in television news at various network affiliates on the east and west coasts including 17 years at ABC affiliate KATU in Portland, Oregon as co-host of 'Faces & Places' and "AM North West" and was the host of an NBC network pilot.
is considered an articulate, popular and formidable Gubernatorial
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The former TV news anchor and radio talk show host points to Article 1, Section 8 of the US Constitution, which prohibits the President from calling up a state's National Guard.