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This is a great victory!  Breitbart reported that our own Congressman Dave Brat has come out against the trade deal!  Here’s the article and here’s a wonderful highlight:

“I operate on the fundamentals: the rule of law matters, the Constitution matters, the free market matters, telling the truth matters, and if any of those get violated, I’m a no,” Brat said.

Brat also condemned the secrecy associated with the trade treaty:

“Debate is a very healthy thing… We need to debate and show where the pressure points are on these arguments, [but] we can’t do that. [Instead] I have to go down to a security bunker– and I have been in there to read the bill– and it’s 400 pages,” Brat said. “What am I going to do? Memorize that and then arrange the key points in my head? And then part of it’s classified and you don’t know what you can even mention to your fellow members or not that haven’t read it yet because it’s under security.”

When a bill has to be under security and you cannot be sure what to say lest you break the law(!) there can only be one answer:  NO.  Maybe I should say it like this:  HELL NO!

I must thank both the Congressman and his Communication Director, Brian Gottstein for the opportunity to communicate with Cong. Brat about this bill and for this story.  Your activism works!  Keep doing it!  Now if you read this blog and you are not involved in your local tea party group – get involved!  If for some reason your local group is compromised or is otherwise unacceptable (taken over by wackos) you can start your own!

About Elwood Sanders

Elwood "Sandy" Sanders is a Hanover attorney who is an Appellate Procedure Consultant for Lantagne Legal Printing and has written ten scholarly legal articles. Sandy was also Virginia's first Appellate Defender and also helped bring curling in VA! (None of these titles imply any endorsement of Sanders’ views)

8 Responses to “VICTORY! CONG. BRAT says NO to the TRADE DEAL!”

  1. Robert Shannon

    Obviously all of us are pleased over Congressman Brats vote on this bill. His point that jumps out is his observation on the value of free and open debate.

    I just hope he retains that philosophy when he runs for re-election and has to decide who is included in the “debates” . The exclusion of James Carr last cycle and Brats unwillingness to participate in the New Kent debates rings hollow in light of his reference today to the value of debates.

    Stay true to your philosophy Congressman,steadfast in principles, not just for public pronouncements, but in your conduct as well.

    Bob Shannon

    • Tom Yancey says:

      Bob, I don’t know why you continue to spread this falsehood — maybe it’s because you were fed it by the RTD. It’s false nonetheless, and it needs to be put to bed.

      Dave Brat DID participate in debates and forums with his opponents during the general election, including with your candidate, James Carr. He didn’t exclude Carr from debate, and the in-plain-sight proof is that he debated Carr and the other guy at the widely publicized Goochland Chamber of Commerce candidates forum.

      As far as the New Kent debate, as the media reported, the organizer scheduled it and told the media it was on before the Brat campaign could even confirm the date. Then she endlessly trashed Brat in the media when the campaign said the date wouldn’t work for him. Is that what a legitimate, unbiased debate organizer does? Her true motives were evidently known by her New Kent neighbors, because no one showed up – the debate was held in a nearly empty auditorium.

  2. Missy Drummond says:

    Mr. Shannon-

    You live in King William County- you don’t live in the 7th Congressional District and couldn’t vote for James Carr- the LIbertarian Candidate- who was insignificant in the race last November.

    So why are you poking Congressman Dave Brat in the eye? for taking the correct conservative position that you would want him to take on this piece of legislation?

    You are undermining the very conservative you claim to have been working to elect as a Tea Party leader- he’s not a lawyer and he’s not Eric Cantor- You Won!

    You don’t know when things are good do you?

  3. Steven Brodie Tucker

    Sandy – it would also be noteworthy just how much pressure there is from the investor-class and business community to pass this Bill. Also, free trade is something the Congressman is actually for, so in future campaigns the Congressman can expect “voted against free trade legislation” attack ads. So this isn’t just a Congressman voting on behalf of his constituents, but a Congressman taking an enormously principled stand, a great political risk, to try and prevent the further erosion of our Constitution and the exponential increase in executive power. I would like to personally thank Congressman Brat, and will, because I know how difficult his position really is.

  4. Robert Shannon

    Ms. Drummond,

    In my first sentence I’ve acknowledged the Congressman’s vote as the correct one. Two points I think you are overlooking .

    1. What district I live in is immaterial, quite frankly on any national issue. I also besides residing in Mechanicsville for 17 years, started the Mechanicsville TEA Party and the several hundred TEA Party signs have my DNA on the 4 X 4 posts. Today I still put about 20 hours a week into this effort , so I doubt many , including you cn rightfully say I don’t have the stature to weigh in on these issues.

    2. It isn’t just electing these folks to office, but holding them accountable that is the tricky part. Far too often the signing of praises wears a bit thin when some time passes and we learn of their true intentions. You might recall all of the hoopla surrounding the election of Bob McDonnell in 2009……

    If Brat or any elected official uses language as Dave did, sounding the clarion call and wisdom in ” open debate” then one has not only a right , but an obligation to point out any hypocrisy.

    Bob Shannon

  5. Robert Shannon


    No one could be a bigger supporter of Congressman Brat than I am. Perhaps one might go back and examine the facts related to the strong support & exposure the Mechanicsville TEA Party gave Dave beginning in 2010. He was invited back and given a prominent role in the events we did at Life Church on numerous occasions. I personally implored him to run.

    I am discerning enough to not be swayed or influenced by the RTD, or any other organization, media or otherwise. I make up my own mind on these matters and stand as one of the most independent voices in the Patriot movement. The “debate ” you refer to in Goochland was hardly a free open exchange, the typical free for all that passes as a true open exchange of ideas. While I did not attend I read the transcript and formed the view that it was almost choreographed in it’s entirety.

    The New Kent event was well planned and having served as the timekeeper that evening well attended, considering Brat wasn’t there. I am also convinced that Brat had originally agreed to participate, but after the nomination , and the subsequent control exhibited by the pro’s who took over, the decision was made to ” sit on the lead” so to speak.

    Quite frankly what I found most frustrating is that Dave Brat could clean the clock of anyone in a debate. He is one of the most intelligent gifted men I have seen enter Virginia politics in a generation, bar none. I stand by my assertion however that anyone who manages to qualify for a ballot ( no easy task ) needs and deserves to be heard. To suggest that Dave could not have demanded Carr be included at the RM event is beyond laughable.

    Furthermore the “hero worship” celebrity status we afford elected officials today is a major part of our inability to hold them accountable. This must stop. No one, including Dave gets a pass going forward. It is instrumental as part of a remedy to moving back to a time when these elected officials were indeed public servants that demands it, not anything I say.

    Bob Shannon

    • Tom Yancey says:


      You calling the debate in Goochland “hardly a free open exchange” and “almost choreographed in it’s entirety” is another fiction. You admitted you weren’t there. I was. The three candidates clearly went after each other’s platforms. Respectfully, I don’t know how you get three opponents who are desperately seeking the same job to “choreograph” anything.

      I saw the the New Kent event as well, and as I said before, the room was mostly empty. Your assessment, however, was well-spun: it was “well attended, considering Brat wasn’t there.” What does that mean? 10 people, 20 people, 40 people in an auditorium that seated hundreds means it was well attended, “considering Brat wasn’t there”? There’s so much spin in that line, perhaps you should run for office.

      I find the things you say hard to believe when you gush about how much of a Brat supporter you are. Maybe you were at one time, but you weren’t when election day was rolling around. I Googled you, my friend. You wrote letters to the editor a number of times during the race touting Carr and hammering Brat with this same misinformation you continue to spread here.

  6. Robert Shannon


    I support Dave, then and now. I just have a profound respect for anyone who is willing to run for office. Once they are on the ballot every other candidate should also respect that enough citizens in their district signed a petition and one of the ways with which to push the republican party back to it’s roots is to utilize any and all leverage one might utilize.

    Alleging I am spinning anything or implying my support for Brat isn’t sincere is missing the point that you seem to not want to address, the hero worship nonsense and the holding elected officials accountable after they are in office. No one gets a pass, and language matters. In Brat’s press release he made use of the words ” free and open debate” , which triggered my response.

    In a debate the quality and rigor are dependent on who writes the questions and the moderators ability to get an answer–specific answer. Being there or watching the video in it’s entirety lends me to recall the disappointment I felt in hearing campaign slogans repeated over and over. Maybe you can be so kind to forward me the video link and i’ll watch it again.

    We won’t begin to solve this nations problems unless and until elected officials tell the American people the unvarnished truth about what ails us.A complimentary and necessary part of that is holding them accountable, in words and deeds. That is just as important in my studied view. And in closing I will reiterate–no one gets a pass. Even the ones we like and admire.

    You and I are on the same side, I simply take a hard line on the accountable issue.

    Bob Shannon


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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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