"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."
So how do we deal with corrupt politicians like Charlie Rangel?
Rep. Charles Rangel said Tuesday that "bias" and "prejudice" toward Obama are fueling opposition to health-care reform.
Those incendiary comments came on the heels of Paterson's controversial comments about race that also mentioned the nation's first black president.
"Some Americans have not gotten over the fact that Obama is president of the United States. They go to sleep wondering, 'How did this happen?' " Rangel (D-Manhattan) said Tuesday.
Speaking at a health-care forum in Washington Heights, Rangel said that when critics complain that Obama is "trying to interfere" with their lives by pushing for health-care reform, "then you know there's just a misunderstanding, a bias, a prejudice, an emotional feeling."
"We're going to have to move forward notwithstanding that," said Rangel, the powerful chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee and a chief health-care negotiator.
Rangel then likened the battle over health-care expansion for the uninsured to the fight for civil rights.
"Why do we have to wait for the right to vote? Why can't we get what God has given us? That is the right to live as human beings and not negotiate with white southerners and not count the votes. Just do the right thing," he said.
Thomas Jefferson said it best:
"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves, (A)nd if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power."
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