GOP lawmaker alleges Bush wants to merge U.S. with Mexico, CanadaBy Howard Fischer/Capitol Media Services
PHOENIX - A veteran Republican lawmakers is accusing President Bush of pushing a behind-the-scenes agenda that will result in the United States being merged with Mexico and Canada.
State Sen. Karen Johnson, R-Mesa, said she believes the Security and Prosperity Partnership, being run out of the White House and the U.S. Department of Commerce, is little more than a secret plan to end U.S. sovereignty by 2010. And she said Congress is being kept in the dark until the point that it becomes a done deal.
Johnson, who will head the Senate Education Committee this coming session, said the signs already are there, from an "inland port'' in Kansas City and construction of a superhighway corridor through Texas to the lack of any real action in building a wall between the U.S. and Mexico.
"It's all because it's going to be open,'' Johnson told Capitol Media Services. "It's all going to be a 'North American community,' just like the European Union,'' she continued, complete with the creation of a single currency just like the Euro.
"We will have no sovereignty, we will have no Constitutionleft,'' said Johnson, first elected to the Legislature in 1996.
And that, she said, will make moot all of the other arguments that tend to divide the nation like abortion and gay rights.
"We're not going to be able to argue those rights any more because we are going to be ruled by unelected tribunals, bureaucrats that are unelected,'' she said.
Johnson said she shared her concerns with some members of the state's congressional delegation during a recent trip to Washington.
What they think, however, is unclear: Calls to the offices of Jeff Flake and Rick Renzi, both of whom Johnson said she sat with, were not returned; an aide to Rep. John Shadegg said he "listened to Sen. Johnson's concerns and we are gathering further information on the matter.''
Johnson said she wants congressional hearings on the process. And she said if federal lawmakers determine that Bush is undermining national sovereignty that would be an impeachable offense.
White House press aide Alex Conant said Johnson has no reason for concern.
"This cooperative effort aims to make the U.S., Canada and Mexico more open to fair trade and less open to terrorism and crime,'' he said.
The partnership does include the leaders of the three countries.
But Conant said there is nothing in the process or any agreements which would undermine or overturn U.S. laws.
"In no way does it change our courts or legislative processes,'' he said. "And it respects the sovereignty of the U.S., Mexico and Canada.''
Johnson is not alone in her claims.
Phyllis Schlafly, president and founder of the Eagle Forum, has written columns for her organization questioning the Bush administration's lack of interest in stopping illegal immigration. She suggested the administration "is pursuing a globalist agenda by means of a series of press releases (without authority from Congress or the American people.)''
And author Jerome Corsi has argued that letting working groups of the partnership rewrite U.S. administrative laws "are arguably creating the legal infrastructure for a regional government to emerge by administrative fiat.''
This isn't Johnson's first battle over what she believes are threats to the nation's sovereignty.
In 2000 she introduced a resolution that would call for the abolition of the federal government and allow individual states to reassume their sovereign rights if the president, Congress or any other federal agent were to declare martial law and suspend the Constitution. These states then would be free to form a new nation - with a new president and a new Congress.
Last year she sent letters to members of Congress who voted for the Central American Free Trade Agreement, saying that and the earlier North American pact "will ultimately make corporations and politicians richer and more powerful, U.S. citizenship meaningless, the taxpayers more oppressed and the Constitution and U.S. sovereignty as dated as hula hoops.'' Johnson also has been at the forefront of legislative efforts to warn people that so-called "silver'' fillings - an amalgam that includes mercury - are dangerous.