Ken Cuccinelli is a Senior Fellow for Homeland Security and Immigration for the Center for Renewing America. The organization works to renew a consensus of America as a nation under God where people have freedom that is predicated on just laws and healthy communities. Recently, Cuccinelli served as Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security and was the former Virginia Attorney General–he talked to CNJ on the achievements for conservative Christians in 2021 and what we can anticipate in 2022.
Can you tell readers the biggest conservative wins of 2021?
Next (2022) year is going to be just a tsunami kick year for Republicans, and I think we’re going to end up with the most conservative House caucus we’ve ever had. Now, that isn’t a high bar, but you know, it’s still important to keep building and keep building. So that’s all very positive. The big question mark going into next year is what will happen in the Senate? We shall see. There’s a lot of state opportunities, but the biggest win of 2021 is stopping the election takeover.
Equality Act is not what the title suggests
I’ll call it the whole radical left-wing agenda in the federal government, because from a Christian standpoint, when they call it the Equality Act, which is of course, yes. Never what the title suggests. But the bigger threat was the election, take over at the federal level, because then they would have just done everything in return. I actually think the single biggest victory was stopping the election takeover by really the radical left and the federal government.
Tell our readers about your work with the Center for Renewing America and getting involved in the culture wars and immigration issues.
One of the things that we’re already accomplishing at the Center for Renewing America is we are willing to take very rational but unpopular positions that others in the think tank arena aren’t willing to take. One thing that I’m working on is the state powers of border states, in particular, under Article One, Section 10, to repel the invasion at our southern border themselves without federal participation or permission. And is it controversial? Yeah, it is. But the fact of the matter is, the federal government isn’t fulfilling its obligations under the guarantee clause, including protecting states from invasion. We in the marketplace of ideas, are stepping into open space here. And there, you know, others just don’t have the courage to do it, frankly. And hopefully, they will, after we break the ice.
What policy of the Biden Administration has floored you?
You look at Afghanistan, you don’t have to look any farther. But they’re intentional efforts to do things like making a Deputy Secretary of Health and Human Services. A very confused man who dresses like a woman and who truly hates us was, you know, goes beyond where we were politically positioned in the Obama administration.
The immigration crisis in Texas
They’re making a good show. But they’re not doing what I described to you. Governor Abbott is well aware of this constitutional provision. It’s not a mystery to him. He has chosen not to do this as two primary opponents both support it to two leading candidates for the Republican nomination for governor and Arizona, both are enthusiastic about utilizing this authority. So I think you can fully expect that it will be utilized sometime in the next year and a half. But it might not be in Texas. Interestingly, a lot of show going on there. I don’t think I will say that they are doing one thing that is meaningful, long-term. It doesn’t have an immediate impact, but it will have long-term effects. And that is continuing to build more walls and critical portions of the border. I am disappointed that Governor Abbott isn’t exercising full authority available to the state.
UPDATE: Cuccinelli recently urged Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey to use Arizona’s National Guard to turn immigrants back at the border during his speech at the Arizona Capitol on Jan. 12. He referenced the “self-defense clause” of the Constitution that prohibits states from engaging in war unless facing immediate danger. The many migrants crossing over the border justifies taking this kind of action he said. “You can build a wall, but if you don’t back it up with manpower, it won’t change the illegal invasion flow. Arizona has the power to decide if it is being invaded, and has the power to defend itself,” Cuccinelli said. “Do not pass go, do not ask Joe Biden.”
We need to engage in these cultural fights, we need to lean forward on the border and use the constitutional powers available to us. But to do those things, we need the concepts articulated, and not someone rolling forward with an angry idea, but with a constitutional concept that they can implement in the real world. And that’s the kind of bridge we’re trying to build for folks with the Center for Renewing America.
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Corine Gatti, writer for various publications.