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FACT Report: Good and Bad Ambition

One way our Founding Fathers planned to protect our liberty from the concentration of political power in one branch of government was to give those who administer each department “personal motives” to resist encroachments on their power by members of the other branches. They said, “Ambition must be made to counteract ambition.”

The expected ambition, of course, was to power. But they forgot about another ambition—to keep getting re-elected. Increasingly, legislators avoid controversial subjects, content to let judges “modernize” the law through judicial interpretation.

Avoiding controversy is understandable, but when the ambition simply to hold office overcomes the Legislature’s ambition to protect its power from encroachment by the judiciary, then even more power will become concentrated in the hands of unelected judges. That will eventually bring about the death of America’s experiment in liberty and democratic self-government.

The FACT Report, featured on several conservative radio stations, is a weekly one-minute audio commentary about a political or cultural issue affecting Tennesseans.

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