Every two years here, we have an election. The regular gubernatorial election is every fours, assuming our governor is healthy and not ready to step down. The election for our Legislature is every two years, commonly called the midterm election. This year, then, is the mid-term election for some of our legislators. It’s in November. And so we look back at the whole four years, to include the two-year newbies, and, we ask, what has the Legislature accomplished during their individual terms of office, that they want to run for office again?
I’ll tell you what. One of the telltales is the mistakes they are making. I may not be a political science emeritus, but I understand enough of the legislative procedures to shake my head, and say mmm. That’s not correct. I attended several training-seminar on legislative procedures conducted by the political science department of the University of Hawaii, headed by professor Dr. Meller. The university set up a program since way back when we were still under TTPI-Mariana Islands District Legislature. And I was not the only one in attendance. One of those in attendance was the late Manuel D. Muna. His photo is on one of the walls at Hale Manoa, East-West Center, back in 1970.
One big mistake was the attempt to amend one of former governor Fitial’s executive order via bill. An executive order is simply an order by a chief executive to his or her subordinates to perform something departmental within the Executive Branch. The Legislature has no business intruding into the domain of the Executive Branch in order to manage the operation of the executive department, something not constitutionally assigned to the Legislative Branch. The principle of the separation of powers governs here.
Then I say another big mistake was the attempt to meddle in the gun control law of the U.S. government. That’s U.S. Constitution Amendment 2. The U.S. Supreme Court has decided on cases under that amendment. Its decision cascades down to every court in the United States and territories. Federal court Judge Mona Manglona is correct in setting aside the action of the Legislature regarding the banning of guns. The Legislature cannot touch the gun issue. That’s the domain of the U.S. government. So the Legislature came back and raised the gun fee to a $1,000 and approved by the OAG. I, for one, do not agree that the gun fee be raised to a $1,000 per gun. Who in this world would pay $1,000 fee for a carbine? That’s tantamount to an impediment to owning a gun. I’m not saying assault rifle, 155 mm howitzer, 50 cal. And 30 cal. machine guns, a tank, bazooka, etc. The fee should be lower to a much reasonable amount so that a decent revenue is generated. Doesn’t the Legislature want us to own a .22 short/long rifle or a “plinker” “para yangin man ehalum tano hit, pat man echiba hit?” Do the legislators really believe that we all have the “killer instinct” and go out and shoot somebody?
Does the police have records of battery or aggravated assault felons? That could be a guide when the person purchases a gun and takes it to the police for registration. So, prospective legislator, what do you have in mind to help our government get money so that it make improvements on our infrastructure, especially money for salary so we could pay CUC, CCHC, gas, food, clothing, and others.
Do you have anything in mind, other than to wait for the money from Best Sunshine? You know that we will be sharing the money from Best Sunshine casino with Tinian and Rota. Do you have any other plan to generate money for our government—the Northern Islands, Saipan, Tinian, and Rota? Unfortunately, Dynasty has fallen, and the money which could be used for the Tinian infrastructure improvement is no more, and the alcalde has to look to the Tinian delegation for financial assistance, maybe for the time being. Rota also needs money. The casino there is not really making good money for the municipality. We are poor. We have to rush around the budget to try to retain money for our municipality, much less our CNMI government.
That’s where you, as a candidate for this upcoming election must come up with an economic plan, miniscule though it would be, to help. A lot of people depend on your economic and financial planning. You don’t have to be a CFO. But you should have a short-, medium-, and long-term economic survivability plan. You must also see if we could get back our immigration system from the U.S. You must make sure that every federal agency that comes here to use our land, etc., must pay. Look at our Covenant and our constitution and see what improvement you could make on them. Look at our 902. See what you could do. Remember that the U.S. wants only two things here, set up a defense posture against Asia, and to control us via foreign policy.
Get our immigration system back, and charge money for every federal agency that comes here to claim something. Stop the Pagan war exercise, and the takeover of Westfield without payment. Let’s go to court on eminent domain reason. Negotiate for an increase in lease money on the next block of 50 or so years. Currently, there is no increase in lease money slated for the next lease year. We’ve been had. Negotiate for the return of our immigration system. Remember, we are no longer naïve nor congenial anymore. Make a demand. We should not live forever like this, being toyed around by the U.S. Do something for us. Come up with a feasible economic and financial plan. Tell me, my candidate, what do you hope to accomplish? And remember the CW and our business enterprises. Look for a good investor.
Rudy M. Sablan