Small Talk About Big Issues

Touching Base with Common Sense

Investigate Indiana’s Walkout Democrats

In light of Democrat Representative Dave Cheatham’s comparison of his walking out of the Indiana General Assembly and fleeing to Illinois with that of the gallantry of the American Soldier going to Afghanistan, let’s examine the actions and repercussions of the Democrats to the laws concerning all soldiers, the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ).

Both the American Soldier and the elected officials of the State of Indiana take a solemn oath before God.

          A Soldier’s Oath

“I, (name), do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same, that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservations or purpose of evasion, and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter.  So help me God” (emphasis mine, jlm).

The Oath of an elected official in Indiana

“I do solemnly swear that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Indiana and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge my duties as a member of the House of Representatives of the General Assembly of the State of Indiana to the best of my ability, so help me God” (emphasis mine, jlm).

In the event a soldier decides to leave his appointed position, it is called being Absent Without Leave (AWOL).  The following is Article 86 of the UCMJ:

“Any member of the armed forces who, without authority—

(1) fails to go to his appointed place of duty at the time prescribed;

(2) goes from that place; or

(3) absents himself or remains absent from his unit, organization, or place of duty at which he is required to be at the time prescribed; shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.”

Elements.

(1) Failure to go to appointed place of duty.

(a) That a certain authority appointed a certain time and place of duty for the accused;

(b) That the accused knew of that time and place; and

(c) That the accused, without authority, failed to go to the appointed place of duty at the time prescribed.

(2) Going from appointed place of duty.

(a) That a certain authority appointed a certain time and place of duty for the accused;

(b) That the accused knew of that time and place; and

(c) That the accused, without authority, went from the appointed place of duty after having reported at such place.

(3) Absence from unit, organization, or place of duty.

(a) That the accused absented himself or her-self from his or her unit, organization, or place of duty at which he or she was required to be;

(b) That the absence was without authority from anyone competent to give him or her leave; and

(c) That the absence was for a certain period of time. Note: if the absence was terminated by apprehension, add the following element

(d) That the absence was terminated by apprehension.

(4) Abandoning watch or guard.

(a) That the accused was a member of a guard, watch, or duty;

(b) That the accused absented himself or her-self from his or her guard, watch, or duty section;

(c) That absence of the accused was without authority; and Note: If the absence was with intent to abandon the accused’s guard, watch, or duty section, add the following element

(d) That the accused intended to abandon his or her guard, watch, or duty section.

(5) Absence from unit, organization, or place of duty with intent to avoid maneuvers or field exercises.

(a) That the accused absented himself or herself from his or her unit, organization, or place of duty at which he or she was required to be;

(b) That the absence of the accused was with-out authority;

(c) That the absence was for a certain period of time;

(d) That the accused knew that the absence would occur during a part of a period of maneuvers or field exercises; and

(e) That the accused intended to avoid all or part of a period of maneuvers or field exercises.

Rep. Cheatham’s comparison then of himself to the American Soldier is convoluted and without credibility.  He compared himself not to the gallant fighting men and women of our nation’s military, but to the few cowardly soldiers that slip through the cracks and into the units.

Even a cursory reading of Article 86 clearly demonstrates the similarities of the spineless Democrats that broke their Oath before God and the faux-soldiers that break their Oath before God.  The difference, however, is the soldier is Court Marshaled and the Democrat politicians are walking free carrying their treasonous behavior like a badge of courage.

If Rep. Cheatham wants so badly to be compared with the American Soldier, then let his cowardice actions receive the same punishment as that of an American Soldier gone AWOL receives.  By the way Mr. Cheatham, I can find no record of your military service in any of the available biographical information concerning you.  Did you serve in the American military?  If not, why not?  You graduated from Madison Consolidated High School in 1969.  The country needed your bravery then.  Did you answer the call?

Indiana Democrats that tucked their tails and went AWOL to Illinois broke a sacred oath and trust before God and the people of Indiana.  Their actions are contrary to the Constitution of Indiana, the Constitution of the United States, and the moral constitution of the average American walking the streets.  Then to add insult to criminal activity, some (like Mr. Cheatham) are actually waving their illicit actions as flags of heroism.

The people of Indiana deserve better.  Yet, I have not heard of any special committees formed to investigate the legality of the Democrats walkout.  Why?

Although sometimes complex, the Constitution of the State of Indiana is ridiculously clear concerning the Governor’s duties when it comes to law.  It simply says,

“The Governor shall take care that the laws are faithfully executed.

(History: As Amended November 6, 1984)”.

Indiana Constitution, Article 5, Section 16:

Did the Democrats that walked out of the General Assembly and ran to Illinois to shun their elected duty break the law?  Yes!  Did these Democrats faithfully perform their duties as they swore to do?  No!  They should be tried, convicted and punished?

Let’s once again turn to the Indiana Constitution.

Article 4, Section 9:

“The sessions of the General Assembly shall be held at the capitol of the State, commencing on the Tuesday next after the second Monday in January of each year in which the General Assembly meets unless a different day or place shall have been appointed by law.  But if, in the opinion of the Governor, the public welfare shall require it, he may, at any time by proclamation, call a special session.  The length and frequency of the sessions of the General Assembly shall be fixed by law.  (History: As Amended November 3, 1970. The schedule adopted with the 1970 amendment to Article 4, Section 9 was stricken out by the November 6, 1984, amendment)” (emphasis mine, jlm).

Did the Democrats uphold Article 4, Section 9 by meeting separately in Illinois?  No!

Article 4, Section 10

“Each House, when assembled, shall choose its own officers, the President of the Senate excepted; judge the elections, qualifications, and returns of its own members; determine its rules of proceeding, and sit upon its own adjournment.  But neither House shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any place other than that in which it may be sitting. (emphasis mine, jlm)”

Did the Democrats adjourn for more than three days without the consent of the other?  Yes!

Did the Democrats meet in a place other “than that in which it may be sitting”?  Yes!

Article 4, Section 13

The doors of each House, and of Committees of the Whole, shall be kept open, except in such cases, as, in the opinion of either House, may require secrecy” (emphasis mine, jlm).

Can any stretch of the imagination suggest the Democrats meeting in Illinois were in open view of the public?

Article 4, Section 21

“The General Assembly shall not pass local or special laws:

Providing for the punishment of crimes and misdemeanors;

Regulating the practice in courts of justice;

Providing for changing the venue in civil and criminal cases;

Granting divorces;

Changing the names of persons;

Providing for laying out, opening, and working on, highways, and for the election or appointment of supervisors;

Vacating roads, town plats, streets, alleys, and public squares;

Summoning and empaneling grand and petit juries, and providing for their compensation;

Regulating county and township business;

Regulating the election of county and township officers and their compensation;

Providing for the assessment and collection of taxes for State, county, township, or road purposes;

Providing for the support of common schools, or the preservation of school funds;

Relating to fees or salaries, except that the laws may be so made as to grade the compensation of officers in proportion to the population and the necessary services required;

Relating to interest on money;

Providing for opening and conducting elections of State, county, or township officers, and designating the places of voting;

Providing for the sale of real estate belonging to minors or other persons laboring under legal disabilities, by executors, administrators, guardians, or trustees.

(History: As Amended March 14, 1881; November 6, 1984)” (emphasis mine, jlm).

Isn’t this the reason the Democrats walked out?

I am publically calling on Gov. Daniels and Attorney General Greg Zoeller to launch a criminal investigation of the Democrats that walked out and fled to Illinois.  Unless, of course, breaking the law is all right for our elected officials.

What say ye…voters of Indiana?

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April 6, 2011 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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