On General Welfare

James Madison (one of the most Federally Oriented founding fathers) had this to say about the General Welfare clause.

If congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands, they may appoint teachers in every state, county, and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post roads; in short, everything, from the highest object of state regulation down to the most minute objects of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress….Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of limited Government established by the people of America.[Letter to Edmund Pendleton, January 21, 1792]

Amazing what he lists as obvious stretches of federal control.



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