[Congressional Record: January 20, 2010 (House)]
[Page H243-H244]


  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under a previous order of the House, the 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Poe) is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. POE of Texas. Mr. Speaker, in the deep, dark dungeons of this 
Capitol, the government trolls are writing bills behind closed doors. 
Their aim has always been to take away our liberty one step at a time. 
It's what bureaucrats do. They look for ways to grow and take over more 
of our lives to justify their existence. So these elite government 
trolls think they know better how to run our lives than we do, and they 
keep their bills in secret so we, the people, won't know what's in them 
until it's too late, until the legislation is forced upon an unwilling, 
misinformed people.
  It has been decades since freedom and liberty faced a full frontal 
assault from a single piece of legislation, a bill that is so damaging 
in scope that by its passage, American freedom and American health will 
be sacrificed on the altar of more government control. Of course I'm 
talking about the universal government takeover of health care. This is 
the most important piece of legislation in modern history, and we were 
promised--we were promised that we in this House, we would have 
transparency. We would see what is taking place.
  The administration promised us that transparency. In fact, the 
administration invited interested parties in health care to the White 
House to discuss health care. Of course, for some reason I wasn't on 
that invitation list because I'm always willing to discuss my position 
and the position of the people I represent. We were promised that 
cameras would film the transparency, cameras like C-SPAN, cameras like 
the ones here in the House of Representatives, down the hallway in the 
U.S. Senate so the American people can see what takes place. I believe 
in cameras so that the American public can see what happens in our 
  When I was a judge back in Texas, I was one of the first judges to 
allow cameras into the courtroom so the American people could see what 
took place in a criminal trial. I've offered legislation to have 
cameras in the United States Supreme Court, in their hearings, so the 
most important, most powerful Court in the United States and in the 
world, the people can see what takes place over there. Of course, that 
legislation hasn't gone anywhere.
  And C-SPAN, what do they do? Well, they're not a news organization in 
the sense that they have commentators. They just film what takes place, 
and the American public decides. C-SPAN wants to film what is taking 
place somewhere in the dungeons of this Capitol where the trolls are 
writing yet another health care bill.
  You know, Mr. Speaker, health care is more than about just government 
control of health care. It's about government control of our lives. 
It's more about government raising taxes, more government spending, 
more borrowing from the Chinese and from the Japanese and more 
oppression. A government takeover of health care is unhealthy, and it's 
not going to make the American health better. It's going to make the 
individual health of the American people actually worse, given that the 
government control over health and health care is not compatible with 
  Mr. Speaker, if we love the competence of FEMA and the efficiency of 
the post office and the compassion of the IRS, we're going to love 
nationalized health care. Allowing our rulers to construct these bills 
in secret is exactly how they will bring about these liberty-killing 
  Patrick Henry, one of my heroes, said, ``The liberties of a people 
never were, nor ever will be secure when the transactions of their 
rulers may be concealed from them. Let me repeat that: ``The liberties 
of a people never were, nor ever will be secure when the transactions 
of their rulers may be concealed from them.'' And that's exactly what's 
taking place in this third health care bill that is supposedly being 
written by Members of the Senate and Members of the House somewhere in 
this Capitol.
  When rulers plot against the people in secret, it makes it hard for 
the people to fight back because they really don't know what's going 
on. But, Mr. Speaker, the people are fighting back. They are fighting 
back with ballots and not bullets. That was proven yesterday in 
Massachusetts. The way things are running in Washington,

[[Page H244]]

D.C., these days, the proof is purposely hidden from the people. And 
the question is why. Why can't the people see through C-SPAN what is 
taking place behind closed doors? Because it's giving power to 
government and not to the people. And that's why we're not being 
allowed to see what's taking place.
  It's about changing the phrase ``We the People'' to ``We the 
Subjects.'' And that's why We, the People, aren't allowed to see what's 
taking place behind these closed doors in secret. So much for 
transparency. Spending, taxing, regulating and borrowing, that's what's 
taking place. There is nothing more these days that the taxocrats won't 
try to tax or regulate.
  Ronald Reagan once said, ``Freedom is never more than one generation 
away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the 
bloodstream . . . It must be fought for, protected and handed on for 
them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling 
our children and our children's children what it was like once in the 
United States where men were free.''
  Legislation, Mr. Speaker, especially the most important in recent 
years, health care, should be done openly, openly so we can see what's 
taking place. So I say, open up the steel gates, quit hiding the facts 
from the citizens. Mr. President, open the gates of transparency and 
openness. And, Mr. President, tear down these walls of secrecy.
  And that's just the way it is.