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Blaze News original: Ditch the UN and terminate the Education Department — conservative fighters seek to slay the federal leviathan
Photo (left): Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images; Photo (right): Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Blaze News original: Ditch the UN and terminate the Education Department — conservative fighters seek to slay the federal leviathan

While conservatives desire dramatic decreases in the size and scope of the federal leviathan — such as the abolition of the Department of Education and the extrication of the U.S. from the United Nations — accomplishing those objectives has been an elusive goal as the big government status quo prevails and America's national debt balloons with no end in sight.

But some members of Congress are fighting to roll back the massive government monstrosity.

One of those lawmakers is Republican Rep. Chip Roy of Texas.

During a phone interview with Blaze News, Roy noted "two reasons to cut spending." He first pointed to the nation's rapidly expanding $34.5 trillion national debt and then noted that slashing spending has the benefit of stopping the funding of entities that kill people's way of life. But Roy described his GOP colleagues as "too spineless" for such action.

The conservative congressman said he thinks "Republicans care more about" having power than actually wielding it to accomplish anything.

He told Blaze News that the U.S. "should end most foreign aid" and ax much of the country's federal government. He also suggested the U.S. should adopt a "simple tax code" such as a flat tax or national sales tax.

Roy put forward a measure late last year that would get the U.S. out of the U.N. and cut off the spigot of American dollars flowing to the globalist organization. GOP Rep. Mike Rogers of Alabama was an original cosponsor.

Roy told Blaze News that the U.N. operates in "direct opposition" to the well-being of the U.S. 90% of the time.

"The President shall terminate all membership by the United States in the United Nations, and in any organ, specialized agency, commission, or other formally affiliated body of the United Nations," a portion of the measure, dubbed the "Disengaging Entirely From the United Nations Debacle Act of 2023," reads.

"No funds are authorized to be appropriated or otherwise made available for assessed or voluntary contributions of the United States to the United Nations or to any organ, specialized agency, commission or other formally affiliated body of the United Nations, except that funds may be appropriated to facilitate termination of United States membership and withdrawal of United States personnel and equipment, in accordance with sections 2 and 3, respectively," the proposal states.

But while such a move would likely inspire cheers among the conservative grassroots, the measure has so far languished in the House without coming up for a vote, even as Republicans hold the majority in the chamber.

Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah, who pushed the U.N.-withdrawal measure in the Senate, has suggested on X that the Transportation Security Administration should be abolished.

"It's time to abolish the TSA. Airlines can and will secure their own planes if a federal agency doesn't do it for them. They'll do it better than TSA, without undermining the Constitution and with less groping—showing more respect for passengers," Lee tweeted.

GOP Rep. Thomas Massie of Kentucky — who is one of the cosponsors of the proposal to withdraw the U.S. from the U.N. — wants to abolish the Department of Education and has pushed a succinct bill that would do just that.

"The Department of Education shall terminate on December 31, 2023," the text of the measure declares.

While speaking to Blaze News, Roy, who is one of the original cosponsors, indicated that states should bear responsibility for handling the issue of education.

When Massie reintroduced the proposal to terminate the department last year, original Republican cosponsors included Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona, Rep. Dan Bishop of North Carolina, Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado, Rep. Eric Burlison of Missouri, Rep. Harriet Hageman of Wyoming, Rep. Rich McCormick of Georgia, Rep. Mary Miller of Illinois, and Rep. Roy.

The bill has not received a House vote.

Last year, while considering the "Parents Bill of Rights Act," the chamber voted on a proposed amendment that read, "It is the sense of Congress that the authority of the Department of Education and the Secretary of Education to operate or administer any office or program related to elementary or secondary education should be terminated on or before December 31, 2023."

Ultimately, the proposed amendment failed in a 161-265 vote, as 60 Republicans joined with 205 Democrats to defeat it.

"During the open appropriations process under Kevin McCarthy, I was able to secure, for the first time since its creation, a floor vote on whether the Department of Education should exist," Massie told Blaze News. "I was encouraged that the measure received 161 votes."

The Congressional Research Service has noted, "Even if a 'sense of' provision is incorporated into a bill that becomes law, such provisions merely express the opinion of Congress or the relevant chamber. They have no formal effect on public policy and have no force of law."

In explaining the difference between his bill that would "terminate" the Education Department and the failed amendment, Massie wrote to Blaze News, "The wording is different. This was necessary to skirt ridiculously applied budget rules on my amendment which came for a vote. Specifically, CBO said eliminating the Dept of Education will increase mandatory spending in the budget window, because they said it would cause massive early retirement payouts," he noted, adding a facepalm emoji. "So we had to change it to a sense of Congress among other things," he wrote.

"It was a struggle to get it to the floor. I had to adjust the language multiple times to overcome what I consider to be dilatory efforts from my own party to keep this off the floor," Massie continued. "Had I not been on the rules committee, and if not for support from Kevin McCarthy for openness in the processes, it would have never received a vote."

"The underlying bill was about forcing local schools to publish their curricula and books in their library. I was opposed to that bill because it presumed the dept of education would enforce that new requirement," Massie wrote. "I said if they gave me a vote on eliminating the department, I would vote for the underlying bill."

Last year, Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida put forward a measure to abolish the ATF.

"The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is hereby abolished," the measure reads.

The bill has not come up for a vote in the GOP-majority House.

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Alex Nitzberg

Alex Nitzberg

Alex Nitzberg is a staff writer for Blaze News.
@alexnitzberg →