Glenn Beck: Would Our Founders Recognize the 'Slaughter Rule'?

This is a rush transcript from "Glenn Beck," March 17, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GLENN BECK, HOST: Dennis Kucinich, the committed far-left wing radical congressman announced today that he is going to be voting yes on health care reform. Kucinich had been in a no vote until he was booked on a flight with Air Force One and the president.

Ah, flying the friendly sky skies of bribery and avarice, control, power — must be crazy.

I'm guessing there were more than just a few peanuts served on flight with Dennis. But on the other hand, with Dennis Kucinich on board, Air Force One did have a record number of nuts on board.

Still, Nancy Pelosi seems to be short on having the votes necessary to pass the bill. That's OK with me, Nancy. Stop looking. We'll just use the "Slaughter rule." That's a neat little trick where the House can pass the bill without even voting on it.

Yes. Yes. Isn't it great? They just vote on the rule and then deem that the bill has been passed. Yes, we passed that one. Oh, the left will jump up and down and say, "Well, they did it, too." And they'd be right as they pointed their bony little fingers at the Republicans.

The technique has been used on amendments or as a way to incorporate something into a bill. The GOP used it on several budget and tax acts. They have. Never has it been done on a comprehensive piece of legislation, you know, like one-sixth of the U.S. economy. But they've done it.

And now, you see what happens when you can say, "They did it too." America's health care at stake but Nancy Pelosi likes the slaughter rule, saying, quote, "I like it because people don't have to vote on the Senate bill."

That's great. So now, your names won't be attached to it. No accountability. And that's what we wanted from Congress: Weasels who aren't willing to stand up and take responsibility.

Actually, no. No, that's not what I think what America was looking for. In fact, there was another Congress that did it the opposite way and I want to show that to you next.


BECK: I was looking at everything that is wrong with using the "Slaughter rule" to pass health care. Our lawmakers are taking no responsibility.

Let me go back to the founding of this nation to a time when our leaders didn't just put their name on things. They took responsibility. It wasn't just: "If I do this, I might not receive my normal support from the unions whose bidding I do daily. I might not get re-elected, you know. Millions won't pour into my campaign coffers."

No, no, no. Back when the Founders did it, there was a good chance that they would hang. In fact, Franklin said, "We must indeed all hang together or, most assuredly, we shall hang separately."

But they didn't pass it with some loophole. "What — the deem and — oh, I didn't vote for that."

John Hancock put a signature on a document that was so big and he said he did it so the king wouldn't have to use his glasses to see it.

The last line of the Declaration of Independence is my favorite: "And in support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor."

We have gone from that in 1776 to — what? "No, I didn't know. Let me hide behind Nancy Pelosi's skirt."

These people would never risk their lives for everything. They'd never go to war. We don't ask them to. We just ask them to vote on war, but they wouldn't even do that. That's how uncommitted they are. They want to be able to be for it before they were against it.

Their fortunes? Their fortunes — they're going to pledge their fortunes? They won't even pay taxes on their fortunes, which I can't understand how most of them even made on their congressional salaries.

Charlie Rangel? Timothy Geithner? That's the tip of the iceberg. According to the IRS, in 2008, 447 House employees and 231 Senate workers didn't pay taxes.

Excuse me?

Even as the head of the Senate Banking Committee, Chris Dodd, was working out sweetheart deals on his mortgage, his mortgage lender was helping cause the subprime mortgage crisis.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A growing family with a lot of debt. A young couple with no down payment. A business owner whose income was hard to document. Every one of them was turned down for a home loan by three different lenders. I'm with Countrywide and I got them all approved.


BECK: Now, it looks like the other three lenders were right, huh? Whoops!

But I digress. The point is, the members of Congress wouldn't even consider pledging their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor. They won't even put their name on a bill. They'll vote for a loophole instead of looking you in the eye and squaring their shoulder and saying yes with the courage of their convictions.

And I'm convinced they should be convicted, not on their convictions but on their backroom deals. Oh, yes. There should be convictions in Washington, but of a different kind.

I don't expect any of the members in Congress to pledge their lives to this cause. We have come too far to hold that expectation. We know they certainly wouldn't spare a nickel from their $175,000 a year salary, let alone their five-star health care plan.

But what do you say? Just a little bit of honor from time to time? Just a little?

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