Response From Frank Wolf (R-VA, 10th District)

A couple of weeks ago, I called on Frank Wolf (R-VA) to resign his seat for violating the Constitution by voting “Yea” on HR 1586. For a refresher on that story, visit the following link:

Time For Frank Wolf (R-VA, 10th District) To Resign
March 20, 2009

My argument is that by voting for legislation that essentially amounts to both a Bill of Attainder and an Ex Post Facto law, Rep. Wolf violated his oath to uphold and defend the Constitution and must be held accountable for it. I sent Mr. Wolf a letter voicing my concerns and asking that he step down. I further made it known that my concerns were over the Constitutional issues, not the bonuses.

I got a response through the mail yesterday. A hard copy letter signed by Mr. Wolf. Here are two excerpts from that letter:

By a vote of 328-93 on March 19, the House passed the bill (H.R. 1586) to impose a new 90 percent tax on the bonuses paid after December 31, 2008, to employees of companies that recieved over $5 billion in taxpayer money.

Here, Mr. Wolf freely admits that HR 1586 qualifies as a Bill of Attainder, which is defined as any legislation that will pose negative effects on a narrowly defined group of people. Mr. Wolf himself defines that group. Further, Mr. Wolf noted that the date of the legislation in question was March 19, 2009 and that it would be retroactively enforced back to December 31, 2008. That qualifies this bill as an Ex Post Facto law.

So, why did he do it? Here is what he wrote:

While I had concerns about the rushed nature of the legislation and some of the legal and constitutional issues raised, I voted for the bill. I reached that decision because of the message that AIG’s payment of bonuses was sending hard-working Americans whose tax money was being used to bail out the company.

That’s it. Frank Wolf voted to trample on Article I, Section 9, Clause 3 of the Constitution of the United States in order to “send a message.” He had no concern whatsoever that what he was doing violated the Constitution.

What’s next? Will Mr. Wolf vote to repeal the 2nd Amendment in order to “send a message” to violent criminals? Maybe Mr. Wolf will vote to allow duties or taxes on exports from a certain state in order to “send a message” to the people of that state. Maybe Mr. Wolf will vote to impose taxes on a specific religious denomination in order to “send a message” to the members of that religion.

Mr. Wolf’s actions regarding HR 1586 are inexcusable. His excuse for taking those actions is intolerable.

Anyone who would violate a certain part of our Constitution will be capable of violating other parts of the Constiotution. Such a person is not to be trusted.

I repeat my earlier call for Mr. Wolf’s removal. I would rather deal with an honest Democrat than a disgraceful Republican. I have already decided that I will not support Frank Wolf for re-election in 2010.