By Meladi Brewer
VERSAILLES — Ohio Rep. Susan Manchester (R-Waynesfield) and U.S. Rep. Warren Davidson (R-Troy) met for a Q&A panel at the Versailles High School Friday to discuss the legislative branch and federalism with the juniors and seniors.
Rep. Davidson started the Q&A off with a brief overview of the history of America’s legislature and how it came to be what it is today starting with breaking off from the British reign.
“The purpose of the government was to protect people from other people and from other’s imposing their will or limiting their rights, and while we needed the government to do some of that, we wanted the government to be limited,” Davidson said.
He stated the legislative branch was created as a way to limit government power as members can be voted out every few years. He continues to talk about the compromises the government faced in order to ensure fairness before Rep. Manchester spoke up.
Manchester expanded on the ideals of Federalism. She stated no one really paid attention to state legislatures until COVID hit.
“There came a lot of attention around what the governor was doing, how the legislature was responding, and what were the governors orders versus the laws that we made,” Manchester said. “I think you guys learning about Federalism, meaning the separation between what the Federal government does versus what the State government does has been highlighted in so many ways.
Lucas Stammen continued the Q&A by asking Davidson about his plans to reduce debt in America. Davidson explained how the government cannot just spend money it does not have.
“Even though it seems like we are getting away with that right now, it’s largely what is happening to inflation. The government didn’t have money, the federal reserve kind of created it and said they will pay it back in the future, but no one really lent us the money,” Davidson said.
He continued by saying the issue is there is more demand, more unemployment, and less supply due to inflation, and it is turning into a real problem as inflation increases the wealth gap.
“It creates more inequality and makes people say things are even harder to afford, so we need more government. Well when you do more government, there will be more spending and borrowing, it causes more inflation, and grows the wealth gap more. Then people say ‘gosh, the wealth gap is growing. Things are too expensive. We need more government’, and they keep doing it over and over again,” said Davidson.
He said socialists love the idea of expanded government because it delivers them more power. Davidson claimed socialism is a fatal overdose of government that never really works for the people before comparing it to fishing in order to help the audience understand.
“You dangle the bait out there, the fish likes the bait, and the fish gets the bait, and it doesn’t really turn out well for the fish. However, the fisherman who is dangling the bait loves how the system works, and that kind of is the idea of socialism,” Davidson said.
He stated the Federal government needs to say not only if this is a good idea or not, but is it Constitutional? He proposed the idea of a plan needing to be made for the next couple of years in order to balance the budget because there is currently only a plan to spend more than [The United States] has.
Turning from budgeting, the students asked Rep. Manchester if high schools should be more personalized towards the interests of students and their plans for the future.
“I’m all for free markets and freedom because I think at the core of that is the idea that people are very individualized and it is hard to find a system that is going to meet the needs of everyone. That’s why I’m opposed to socialism because socialism takes the individualization out of everything,” Manchester replied.
She said socialism takes away from the creativity an assertive individual can have if everyone is given the same job, pay scale, and were treated like a machine. Manchester believes an individualized curriculum is worth looking into; however, state requirements take a toll on what can be done.
“The state has an interest in being involved with the education system because citizens pay for it, but I think there’s a fine line and they’re crossed it,” Manchester said.
Davidson concluded the Q&A session with a brief overview of his main takeaway viewpoints before thanking the students stating it was an honor to answer their questions.
“Again we need less government, more freedom, and we don’t need to tax everything in the world,” Davidson said.
To contact Daily Advocate Reporter Meladi Brewer, email [email protected]