A Recurring Government Shutdown Problem, a Possible and Lasting Solution

WHAT CONSTITUTES “GENERAL WELFARE”?

by William Heino, Sr., ©2019

(Feb. 5, 2019) — The preamble to the Constitution mentions “...promote the general welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty and ourselves…” There is the word “welfare” as it pertains to how its meaning fits into the American framework, if at all. As a preamble it carries no legal force, only a wishful explanation of a nation’s desires and an opening to the Constitution.

However…

Article 1, Section 8 states: “The Congress shall have the Power to lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States…”

Article 1, Section 8 was applied in the landmark case McCulloch v. Maryland in 1819 when the Supreme Court endorsed the concept of a national bank.

The Necessary-and-Proper Clause reads, “To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for Carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers and all other Powers vested by this Government of the United States.”

U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Marshall said, “Let this be done in the case under consideration. The subject is the execution of those great powers on which the welfare of a Nation essentially depends..”

The General Welfare and Commerce clauses gave Congress authority to decide a national bank was Necessary and Proper…”

Nothing in Article 1, Section 8’s enumerated powers mentions, suggests, or endorses any establishment of a bank.Of McCulloch v. Maryland, Supreme Court Justice John Marshall reasoned, “The subject is the execution of those great powers on which the welfare of a Nation essentially depends.”

The question of a government shutdown is as well dependent on “..the execution of those great powers on which the welfare of a Nation essentially depends.”


William Heino Sr., 85, is a Korean-era US Navy veteran with an interest in constitutional issues.

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