Tea party-backed Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) on Thursday told a conservative conference in Washington, D.C. that "restoring faith in government" was the "wrong solution" and that lawmakers should instead be encouraging "distrust."
Speaking to the Faith and Freedom Coalition's Road to Majority conference, Johnson said that too many Americans had forgotten the "foundational premise of this nation," that the Founding Fathers understood government was "something to fear."
"Americans are willingly trading their freedom and ours for the false sense, for the false promise of economic security," he opined.
Johnson asserted that congressional approval ratings of 9 percent were "too high."
"So what surprises me is, why does at least a majority continue to elect politicians that are dedicated to growing this place?" he asked. "I have no idea. It utterly baffles me."
"We are witnessing the IRS scandal, we are witnessing the lies surrounding Benghazi, we are witnessing the very legitimate concern and debate about the NSA," the Wisconsin Republican added. "We have got to be looking at the big picture, we need to apply this dysfunction, this moment in history when America is rightfully distrusting the federal government over these other scandals -- we have got to make sure they apply that to the government in total."
"When I hear politicians talk about restoring faith in government... no, no, no, no, no. That is the wrong solution! We need to engender that healthy distrust, that healthy distrust that our Founders found with government."
Watch this video from ABC News, broadcast June 13, 2013.