July 23rd, 2010
05:59 PM ET
4 years ago

Tennessee Republican floats secession threat

Tennessee Congressman Zach Wamp argued that mandates forced on the states by the Obama administration's health care bill have put secession on the table.
Tennessee Congressman Zach Wamp argued that mandates forced on the states by the Obama administration's health care bill have put secession on the table.

(CNN) – Texas Gov. Rick Perry's suggestion in April 2009 that his state might consider secession drew a round of mockery nationwide, but his blustery populist rhetoric earned him serious traction among GOP primary voters in his re-election fight against Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison.

Perry, riding a tide of anti-Washington sentiment, went on to trounce Hutchison and another candidate in the Republican primary earlier this year.

Now another gubernatorial hopeful is test-driving a similar message.

Rep. Zach Wamp, one of three candidates seeking the GOP gubernatorial nomination in Tennessee, told Hotline OnCall that Perry had the right idea. Wamp argued that mandates forced on the states by the Obama administration's health care bill have put secession on the table.

"I hope that the American people will go to the ballot box in 2010 and 2012 so that states are not forced to consider separation from this government," Wamp told Hotline OnCall Friday.

Wamp said he hopes voters send a message in November that the federal government should "strictly adhere" to the Constitution.

"Patriots like Rick Perry have talked about these issues because the federal government is putting us in an untenable position at the state level," he told OnCall.

His primary opponents, Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey and Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam, both told the website they don't support secession.


Filed under: 2010 • Bill Haslam • Popular Posts • Ron Ramsey • Tennessee • Zach Wamp
soundoff (258 Responses)
  1. JonDie

    The same southern traitors who caused the Civil War (which killed more U.S. soldiers than any war in U.S. history before or after) are at it again. Where once the Democratic Party in the South was the party of hatred, division, violence and anarchy, now the Republican Party has taken that place. If U.S. voters EVER let Republicans control the White House and Congress again we are doomed as a nation.

    July 23, 2010 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  2. cinfo

    Seriously? Alrighty then, go away Texas and Tennessee and take your racism with you.

    July 23, 2010 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  3. JonDie

    "Patriots like Rick Perry have talked about these issues because the federal government is putting us in an untenable position at the state level," he told OnCall.

    Traitors like REPUBLICAN Rick Perry say the B.P. oil disaster was an "act of God" and not an act of B.P.

    July 23, 2010 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  4. JDoe

    Actually, maybe it's something we all should take a look at......

    We've been fighting over the same issues for more than a 100 years.

    Dems wants a more Socialistic type country and GOPs want to adhere strictly to the principles of the Founders and the Constitution.

    Maybe we should just get a divorce and both go our separate ways and be done with all the fighting !

    What a waste of time and money it has been

    July 23, 2010 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  5. StupidSwamp

    And that is why Haslam will win!!! Anyone that thinks that secession is cool should be reminded that without the federal government, some states and city and county governments will do whatever they want to anybody. With people being able to move around into ALL states (that includes backwoods people of TN), we are ALL Americans and should have equal rights in all states. Otherwise, we would be like foreign countries with tribes ruling different areas. For example, the Hatfields and McCoys would rule Eastern Kentucky, etc. Families that want to rule certain parts of their towns and communities would be unchecked. The United States of America is the perfect system of checks and balances, city and county and state and federal government all within check to ensure we are all equal and united. Thats why the federal government has senators and representatives from every state to ensure that we all MELT together.

    July 23, 2010 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  6. chad

    could a person be more anti-american? treason!

    July 23, 2010 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  7. Poser

    Talk of secession is about as un-American as you can get. I guess the GOP mantra of "Country First" is just as empty now as it was when the slogan was first trotted out nearly two years ago.

    Why does the GOP hate America?

    Vote NO to the party of NO in NOvember

    July 23, 2010 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  8. ConstitutionalPatriot

    That's right after all secession is quite American. We basically used secession to throw off the chains of British tyranny. I love it when the liberals say these states are poor and couldn't get by without their tax dollars. It shows where their focus is, on money and money is the root of all evil. I say keep your big government and your money, a people do not have to be rich to be free and prosperous. Should any state seceed from the union I will be packing my things and working on gaining citizenship in said state in order to throw off the yoke of big government oppression. They just don't get it and I can't understand why. Tell me why all you liberal progressive nutjobs just won't leave us the hell alone and follow the constitution?

    July 23, 2010 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  9. John CL

    Another wing nut is heard from

    July 23, 2010 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  10. Sherry in Kentucky

    For people who claim to be proud to be American, they sure do sound like traitors.

    July 23, 2010 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  11. Gerald

    Such blatant hypocrisy. The same people blathering on about secession are the ones who adamantly defend having "Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance. And yet, they seem completely unaware of the word which follows – INDIVISIBLE. People like Rep. Wamp and Gov. Perry are either woefully ignorant or just downright hypocritical. Someone in the media needs to ask them pointedly if they believe in the Pledge of Allegiance or not and then point their obvious clueless response out immediately.

    July 23, 2010 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  12. alpha_nu_916

    this amounts to nothing less than sedition.

    July 23, 2010 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  13. Susan

    Are these secession promoting politicians un-American, or what?

    July 23, 2010 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  14. Larry

    Secede (suck-ceed) this, you Republican moron

    I get sooooo sick of these sensationalist statements meant only to get the radical voters behind those that speak it

    If you don't like this great U S OF A ... GET OUT

    Leave those of us that really care about this country to move on without you

    July 23, 2010 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  15. Georgia

    Another Republican MORON!

    He would be the first on to call for Federal Emergency Funds when the 1st tornado or some other major catastrophe hit his state.

    Then there are the inbred morons that go along with their stupid ideas!

    Remember: Republicans = Incompetence

    July 23, 2010 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  16. Rickster

    Secession would be a viable option if obama and his ilk were going to be in power for any length of time but because he and his policies have been such an epic and obvious failure, the dems are going to get the boot this fall and Barry will be unceremoniously thrown out the door in 2012 so we don't have to worry about secession.

    July 23, 2010 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  17. Jim El Paso Tx

    These Repuke govenors an wantabies really fit in with the T baggers!

    July 23, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  18. Gerald in Texas

    Blatant hypocrisy. The people who blather on about secession are also likely to be adamantly in favor of keeping the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance. They either don't know or don't care that the very next word in the pledge is INDIVISIBLE. Politicians like Rep. Wamp and Gov. Perry are either woefully ignorant or just downright hypocritical when they talk about secession. Someone in the media needs to ask them, in front of cameras, if they support the Pledge of Allegiance or not and follow up with the obvious point that they are lying.

    July 23, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  19. Charlie

    The United States is one of, if not the greatest nation in the world. But Federal and State governments need to stop pushing unfunded mandates. If as a federal government you feel that the measure is important then pay for it. DON"T pass the burden on and claim to have done such a wonderful thing. I the tax payer still has to pay for this tom foolery.

    July 23, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  20. Sniffit

    In the spirit of fiscal responsibility and personal accountability, I believe the Dems in Congress should propose legislation that limits every state's federal funding (i.e., what the GOP/Teatards would universally generalize as "welfare") to the amount of federal taxes that state's citizenry contributes.

    Guess where that leaves TN, SC, et al...

    July 23, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  21. Pragmatic

    Secession? That question was settled, by the deaths of many Americans in 1965.

    Funny, those who profess to hold the Constitution most dear, are the ones who would destroy the Union! Sharron Angel is talking armed rebellion!

    America settles its differences at the ballot box, by majority rule: anything else is treason ... and childish temper tantrums!

    July 23, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  22. JimII

    Note that this traitor is not some blogger, or some commenter on a blog. This is a candidate for GOVERNOR of a state. Is there anyone who can get the right to rejoin the national conversation? You've got this and Tancredo claiming Obama is more dangerous than Al Qaeda. Really? An elected President doing the work he was elected to do? Actually, no, he was elected by people wanting much strong legislation than was passed, but this watered down stuff we have is an effort to find middle ground.

    What is happening on the right in this country?!?

    July 23, 2010 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  23. Lori in St Pete

    If only the red states WOULD separate "from this government". We could save a fortune! Blue states are "giver" states, meaning they pay more to the federal government than they get back in services/entitlements/grants, etc. Red states are "taker" states. They get more federal money in entitlements/services/grants, etc. than they pay in. If the red states all left, the blues would have a markedly improved quality of life!

    July 23, 2010 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  24. Dawn Ada, Ohio

    Allow all of the progressive thinking Southerner to move North and have at it!!!

    July 23, 2010 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  25. Pragmatic

    that's 1865: so angry at stupidity I can't even type straight!

    July 23, 2010 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
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