June 26th, 2011
01:22 PM ET

Letters to the President: #888 'States rights and wrongs'

Reporter's Note: President Obama has spoken occasionally about which responsibilities should fall to the federal government, and which to the states. That’s why this letter is falling on his desk.

Dear Mr. President,

One thing I have noticed about states’ rights is that they seem to be highly influenced by the subject at hand. For example, if someone has succeeded in grabbing a political edge on some issue in his neck of the woods - no matter if it leans liberal or conservative - that person is suddenly a staunch defender of the right of local rule.

By the same token, if the political winds start blowing against them at home, suddenly they are howling on the Capitol steps or skulking around the White House lawn demanding that the federal government intervene.

It’s tiring, and it seems pretty darn disingenuous. It’s like watching a team scream about the referees after every game they lose, and praise the refs after every one they win, even if the officiating is rock-solid across the board.