Let Legislators Confine Themselves to the Constitution

Called Unto Liberty, 19th Century Sermons, John Taylor

We believe that all legislative assemblies should confine themselves to constitutional principles; and that all such laws should be implicitly obeyed by every American . . . .

We believe that the president, governors, judges, and government officers ought to be respected, honored, and sustained in their stations; but that they ought to use their positions and power, not for political emolument, or party purposes, but for the administration of justice, and equity, and for the well being and happiness of the people.

We believe that legislators ought to be chosen on account of their intelligence, honor, integrity, and virtue, and not because they belong to some particular party clique.

We believe that the high party strife, logrolling, wirepulling, and political juggling, and spoliation, are a disgrace to any politician, that they are beneath the dignity of an American, and disgraceful and humiliating, alike to the people and statesmen of this great republic.

We believe that legislative enactments ought to be for the good of the whole, and not for any particular location or district, and that anything else is at variance with the spirit and genius of our institutions.

We believe that although there is much to lament, and room for very great improvement, both in our executive, judiciary, and legislative departments, that we have the most liberal, free, and enlightened government in the world.


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Source: John Taylor, 1855, Gospel Kingdom, p. 310.  John Taylor (1808-1887) was the third President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


Called Unto Liberty is a project of Steve Farrell and The Moral Liberal.