Tancredo resurrects right-wing meme for Memorial Day, talks secession

Hosting Peter Boyles talk radio show in Denver Memorial Day, former U.S. Congressman Tom Tancredo said that although the cause of the Civil War was right, he has never understood why Pres. Lincoln forced the South to stay in the Union. The historic discussion turned to why Tancredo and others who opposed Pres. Obama’s policies shouldn’t be allowed to secede from the United States.

Tancredo said he thought slavery was a “terrible terrible thing” but said that the South’s decision to leave the Union was analogous to the decision of the American colonies to fight for independence from England a hundred years prior to the Civil War.

“I have never understood why it was morally right to force the South to stay in the Union,” Tancredo said. ” The cause was morally right. I don’t doubt that: end slavery. But just the legal aspect of it. When you consider that a very short time before the Civil War, we had decided that we could not retain the kind of relationship we had with Great Britain and war was appropriate, that severing our relationship was appropriate,” Tancredo said.

Tancredo went on to say that while Pres. Abraham Lincoln is revered for his actions during the Civil War, all Lincoln really taught the world was that “might made right.”

Tancredo has famously if fleetingly been associated with Southern secessionists before. He spoke in public on the matter to an audience that included members of the southern nationalist or separatist group League of the South . He sang “Dixie” that day with a crowd that included white supremacists at a speech in South Carolina. The episode colored the speech he gave, an otherwise typical talk in which he detailed his anti-illegal immigration views.

Memorial Day, Tancredo turned from Secession to a speech Pres. Obama gave in July 2008 in Colorado Springs. Tancredo claimed Obama called for a national security corps that would be as heavily armed as the military and that Obama would use the corps to install his agenda. The claim has been widely debunked.

Playing a clip of Obama’s speech (video), Tancredo said Obama outlined his plan to build a national security force that was “just as well armed” as the military to put in place “his national objective.” The president was speaking of expanding Americorps— the country’s volunteer services, including the Peace corps– to further the national agenda.

“We can not continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives we have set,” said Obama in the clip Tancredo played. Tancredo said he did not agree with the President’s agenda. He said he could move to Texas where he and others who disagree with the Presiden’t policies might secede from the Union.

“Should we not be allowed to take our ball and go home?” Tancredo asked.

From Obama’s July 2 speech in Colorado Springs:

Today, AmeriCorps — our nation’s network of local, state, and national service programs — has 75,000 slots. And I know firsthand the quality of these programs. My wife, Michelle, once left her job at a law firm and at City Hall to be a founding director of an AmeriCorps program in Chicago that trains young people for careers in public service. And these programs invest Americans in their communities and their country. They tap America’s greatest resource — our citizens.

And that’s why as president, I will expand AmeriCorps to 250,000 slots and make that increased service a vehicle to meet national goals like providing health care and education, saving our planet and restoring our standing in the world, so that citizens see their efforts connected to a common purpose… So we are going to send more college graduates to teach and mentor our young people. We’ll call on Americans to join an Energy Corps to conduct renewable energy and environmental cleanup projects in their neighborhoods all across the country. We will enlist our veterans to find jobs and support for other vets, to be there for our military families. And we’re going to grow our Foreign Service, open consulates that have been shuttered, and double the size of the Peace Corps by 2011 to renew our diplomacy.

We cannot continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we’ve set. We’ve got to have a civilian national security force that’s just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded.

We need to use technology to connect people to service. We’ll expand USA Freedom Corps to create online networks where Americans can browse opportunities to volunteer…

Tancredo’s take from the Peter Boyles show, May 31, 2010

[AUDIO Starts]

OBAMA: We can not continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives we have set. We have got to have a civilian national security force that is just as powerful, just as strong, just as well funded.



TANCREDO: Did you hear what he said we need a civilian force just as well funded. Just as well armed to put in place his national objective. Did you hear that everyone. Why isn’t that statement on the part of candidate Obama, now president? Why isn’t that something that the whole world hasn’t focused on, let alone the media?

By the way if you look up this speech on the internet and you go to–it will come up with the Rocky Mountain News edition, the one I saw…. The White House, excuse me the campaign, sent the speech out afterward, you know, gave it to the press. There was one little problem with that speech they gave to the press: the lines you just heard him say were not in that speech, not in the lines they gave to the press…. [T]hey don’t have the whole speech there. They have everything but this part. What did he mean by that? What was the national object of which he has in mind for which he wants a civilian military force as strong as the national–the military force that we have in place today? What did he mean by that? What are his objectives. It is the most bizarre thing. It is not something that he was just thinking about at the time.


I don’t advocate any violence… I am just saying when is it that we can say that we have had enough. We being of the majority of people in this country who do not agree with the direction we are heading if that majority still exists, but even if it is a minority. Even if we are in the minority. Even if we no longer want to be part of Obama’s idea of America– Obama and company, the left– should we not be allowed to take our ball and go home and say OK– Texas, well there is a lot of talk of whether or not in their Constitution they established the right to secede. There is a lot of discussion as to whether it does exist in there actually. But whether they have it in the Constitution or not there was nothing in the documents that set up the colonies that gave them the right to secede from Great Britain. We just figured it was the right time we needed to do it. How far away are we from that today? I hear people constantly telling me that they are mad as hell and they aren’t going to take it anymore. The question is how far away are we as a nation– at least a significant number of people in this nation — how far away are we from saying we are really mad, and we are really not going to take it any more?

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