Obama’s Reforms Are Tyranny, Says Virginia Attorney General

Speaking to a crowd of tea party activists at the 9/12 rally on the Washington Mall, Ken Cuccinelli made a bold claim, comparing Obama’s administration to the tyranny inflicted on the United States under British colonial rule. 

“King George III and the parliament of Great Britain that we rebelled against respected the liberty of the colonists of America more than the Congress and the president of the United States of America,” he said.  Cuccinelli, Virginia’s attorney general, filed suit against health care reform on the day Barack Obama signed the bill into law.  One of the key points of contention is a mandate that requires those without insurance to buy it in the coming years or face a financial penalty.  Virginia residents, however, are exempted from that provision, thanks to a law passed by the state legislature.

Cuccinelli compared this mandate to the American colonists’ famous tea boycott, saying that the federal government has overstepped its bounds in requiring citizens to buy insurance.  “If the federal government can order you to buy health insurance, they can order you to buy anything,” he said.

Speaking of tyranny, though, let’s do a quick rundown of the actions that have placed Cuccinelli in the spotlight, again and again, throughout this year.  Most recently, after trying and repeatedly failing to get laws passed in the Virginia assembly which would require abortion clinics to conform to hospital-type standards (thus closing most of the clinics, which would have to undergo costly renovations and in some cases move to a different location), he bypassed this cumbersome arm of our government and issued a legal opinion placing the decision in the lap of the Virginia Board of Health.

A Circuit Court judge recently put a stop to Cuccinelli’s witch hunt against former UVA climate scientists Michael Mann, who Cuccinelli claimed had defrauded taxpayers in seeking grants for global warming research.  Mann’s work, which is highly controversial, has repeatedly been targeted by global warming skeptics like Cuccinelli.  UVA refused to release the information, and it looks as though Cuccinelli’s assault on academic freedom, thankfully, will go no further.

Both of these actions sought to suppress two crucial kinds of freedom, intellectual and reproductive.  It seems odd that, as Dahlia Lithwick pointed out last month, Cuccinelli’s legal opinions seem always to match perfectly with his legal opinions, but for such a stronger defender of freedom, he seems to be blissfully unaware of what the concept actually means.

Photo from Wikimedia Commons.


Craig C.
Craig C7 years ago

Lydia as of right now we are living under 2 constitutions and 1 has to go, care to think which one? You and i both know the answer and most are waking up to the fact now. What needed to be put in that pledge was to run the rats out, Europe would love them!!! Hope and Change is coming and they don't like it as you can see from their posts.

Lydia S.
Lydia S7 years ago

Charlene R said: "In regards to our Founding Fathers, they were anything, BUT religious and avoided inserting religion into the Constitution."

Are you kidding??? They were anything BUT religious?? They might not have put religion INTO the Constitution, but the document which PRECEDED the Constitution, when they DECLARED their independence from England, they most definitely expressed their belief in God! Using the language of the day, they stated their belief in God ... and asked for His guidance in forming the US.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights ...

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, ...

And for the 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.

Who do you think "Creator", "Supreme Judge of the World" and "Divine Providence" refer to? These references were made by religious men, whether you care to admit it or not!

Your Historical Revision is very disingenuous!

Lydia S.
Lydia S7 years ago

DH F said: "Want to know what tyranny is? Ask a TP'er to describe his/her ideas about how this country should be run."

Well, my question to you is -- How do YOU want the country to be run?

1) Do you want MORE and BIGGER government?
2) Do you think the government knows BETTER what you & your family need?
3) Do you want the government to determine how much money you deserve to EARN & how much you should be able to KEEP?
4) Do you think that someone who hasn't worked or earned what you worked for, SHOULD HAVE ACCESS TO YOUR EARNINGS (i.e. redistribution of YOUR wealth)?

AND: "These right-wing reactionaries want a govt that dictates our personal "choices" to us, and that has the power to interfere with the most personal aspects of one's life -- from cradle to grave. Above all, they want a govt that crushes dissent and individuality, and ensures that everyone marches in lockstep."

DH, Are you talking about islam? Sharia dictates all aspects of life; does not recognize the right of women to choose anything (even who they will marry) ... Islamic governments crush dissent - you cannot even question the Koran, etc. No individuality is recognized.

I see - it's ok, as long as it's muslims "limiting choices", not "tea baggers" - Then we must be "tolerant", respect "diversity", etc. You promote "tolerance" & 1st Amendment rights ONLY for those you agree with!

Carole H.
Carole Hagen7 years ago


Marco D.
Marco Silva7 years ago

Compulsory insurances are reassured to force people on the 8hour a day slavery. Car insurance is like a foot pressing us to the asphalt.

Diane H. F7 years ago

Want to know what tyranny is? Ask a TP'er to describe his/her ideas about how this country should be run. These right-wing reactionaries want a govt that dictates our personal "choices" to us, and that has the power to interfere with the most personal aspects of one's life -- from cradle to grave. Above all, the want a govt that crushes dissent and individuality, and ensures that everyone marches in lockstep.

Jim Steve
Jim Steve7 years ago

One of the people here commented about people being thrown into a ravine as tyranny. Is that? Well yes of course is. But it doesn't TAKE that for the system to be tyrannical or despotic. The British weren't doing that, and the Colonies revolted. They did so because they understood that their human rights were being violated by the British Government.

Perhaps we should look at some of the complaints listed in the Declaration of Independence?

Sheila C.
Sheila C.7 years ago

I live in Spain. Some 15 miles north of my house is a ravine where they used to throw people suspected of opposition to Franco's government.

That is my definition of tyranny - being killed for suspicion of peaceful opposition to the tyrant. Having to buy health insurance doesn't seem to be quite in the same league.

Bridget D.
Bridget D7 years ago

haha Veronica - thank you for the compliment! It's not sad to be me, it's actually quite wonderful. Sorry if I made you feel inferior for disproving your numerous points. Wouldn't expext much more from you though, have a happy life, although I'm sure you won't!

Veronica F.
Veronica F7 years ago

Bridget D:

I'm sorry you fail to get the intricacies of auto insurance, regardless if one outright owns, borrows or leases a car. I can only conclude by your infantile and petulent remarks that because it is beyond your scope, infantile and petulent remarks are all you have to offer. How sad to be you.

Helen Allard:

I am sorry you require medication to keep your mental faculties in check. It is a confusing and hard world we live in. I understand it can be overwhelming for some and they find the need to self medicate in order to cope. I, however, do not, but I appreciate your kind suggestion that I take Xanax.

To both I say: Allow me to offer my Congratulations to the both of you for showing what "stellar" individuals you are.