Category Archives: Constitution

The Death of The Rule of Law in Alabama

From Public Discourse:

What is marriage law in Alabama now? What groups of people are entitled to receive a license? Are all of the marriages that have been contracted in the state of Alabama now unconstitutional? If not, then which ones are still valid? Must Alabama officials stop enforcing all of marriage’s legal protections for the rights of children, such as the presumption of paternity and presumptions of biological parental custody? After all, those incidents cannot apply equally to same-sex couples as to married couples.

What “rule of law” answers these fundamental questions? Judge Granade has now set herself up to be the chief probate officer in the state of Alabama. She has not defined marriage, and her failure to do so leaves state actors, especially probate judges, without a definition of the institution for which they are issuing state licenses. Worse, she has provided no legal standards—not even a limiting principle—to guide her administration of Alabama family law, which she has now taken upon herself. She will be rewriting the family laws of Alabama, piecemeal and arbitrarily, from her bench. Rather than conducting legislative hearings regarding the familial rights and duties related to the definition of marriage, Judge Granade will be conducting contempt proceedings in which she will decide on a case-by-case basis which actions of Alabama officials violate the Constitution and which do not.

If the rule of law is not already dead in Alabama, then it is seriously wounded indeed.

Read it all here

Federal Judge Violates Supreme Court Precedent

On Wednesday, yet another activist judge decided to impose his definition of marriage on an unwilling state, this time in Kentucky.

There’s so much nonsense in the ruling, like so many that have come before it, that it’s hard to know where to begin.

The federal “judge”, John Heyburn, dragged out all the same old canards. He repeated the completely nonsensical claim that marriage has nothing to do with procreation because not each and every married couple in America has a child (If all laws must correlate 100 percent with their aims in order to be rational, then we’re going to have to get rid of a lot more laws). And of course he invoked the phony Loving v. Virginia analogy.

But his most egregious move was to completely contradict the Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Windsor, while purportedly using that very decision as the basis for his irrational ruling.

The Supreme Court’s Windsor decision was an incoherent mess, but that isn’t why Heyburn chose to directly contradict its holdings. No, he claimed to be following the precedent while violating it.

In short, the essential holding of Windsor was that it is the states’ prerogative to define marriage, not the federal government. Following the precedent would have required Heyburn (himself acting as part of the federal government) to uphold Kentucky’s legal definition of marriage. But the “judge” ruled just the opposite. He threw out the state’s definition, supposedly on the basis of Windsor. Eric Holder’s DOJ is doing the same thing. So we have federal officials overturning state definitions based on a Supreme Court ruling that said it’s the states, not the feds, who have the power to define marriage. It’s all really just Orwellian.

None of it is based on reason, on the law, or on the Constitution. The “progressive” elites of our society want marriage to be redefined, so they can preen about how “tolerant” and “progressive” they are, and so it shall be done, by any means necessary. Nothing like the rule of law or respect for representative government is going to stop these people.

The Legal Circus That Killed Proposition 8

The process that killed Prop 8 in California should concern anyone who cares about democracy and the rule of law. The cheaters won.

The Legal Circus That Killed Proposition 8

President Obama versus religious liberty

A very strong statement on religious liberty today from Mitt Romney in the Washington Examiner:

President Obama versus religious liberty

The Obama administration is at it again. They are now using Obamacare to impose a secular vision on Americans who believe that they should not have their religious freedom taken away.

….

My own view is clear. I stand with the Catholic Bishops and all religious organizations in their strenuous objection to this liberty- and conscience-stifling regulation. I am committed to overturning Obamacare root and branch. If I am elected President, on day one of my administration I will issue an executive order directing my Secretary of Health and Human Services to issue a waiver from its requirements to all 50 states. And on day one I will eliminate the Obama administration rule that compels religious institutions to violate the tenets of their own faith. Such rules don’t belong in the America that I believe in.

The America I believe in is governed by the U.S. Constitution and I will not hesitate to use the powers of the presidency to protect religious liberty.

….

What the Obama administration has done is indefensible. But this is about even more than President Obama denying America’s Catholics their constitutionally protected rights. This is about the preservation of our freedom. We must come together to make sure that these egregious violations of our Constitution do not stand.

The whole article is well worth a read.

Typical Obama double-talk on anniversary of Roe vs. Wade

Via Politics Daily:

On the 38th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion, President Obama said Saturday he is committed to protecting what he considers a fundamental principle: “government should not intrude on private family matters.”

Obama, in a brief statement marking the 1973 Supreme Court opinion, said he also remains committed “to policies, initiatives and programs that help prevent unintended pregnancies, support pregnant women and mothers, encourage healthy relationships, and promote adoption.”

Quick, can anyone spot the contradiction in those two statements? The obvious contradiction seems to have evaded the Smartest President Ever.

Additionally, doesn’t Obama know that the Supreme Court is part of the government?

And finally, the assertion that the “government should not intrude on private family matters” is awfully rich coming from the guy whose signature achievement includes forcing every family in America to buy a government mandated health insurance policy, whether they want one or not.

No, the idea that Obama and the majority of his party don’t want the government to “intrude on private family matters” is obviously complete bunk. They don’t want any legislation that restricts in any way a woman’s ability to have an abortion at any point during her pregnancy, that’s what they want. They’re all for intrusion if it means government helping to fund abortions. They’re all for government intrusion into any other area of human existence. This is just one more example of President Obama saying whatever he thinks will sound good in a speech.

obama - words are cheap

Governor says he’s a Christian, media, activists outraged

Occasionally, some public figure will say something perfectly in line with traditional Christianity, and the forces of “tolerance” in America, in the media, professional grievance groups, bloggers, etc, will react in horror and outrage. By so doing, they merely display their own ignorance and prejudice.

The latest example, from the AP, via Yahoo News:

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley told a church crowd just moments into his new administration that those who have not accepted Jesus as their savior are not his brothers and sisters, shocking some critics who questioned Tuesday whether he can be fair to non-Christians.

“Anybody here today who has not accepted Jesus Christ as their savior, I’m telling you, you’re not my brother and you’re not my sister, and I want to be your brother,” Bentley said Monday, his inauguration day, according to The Birmingham News.

Christians routinely refer to each other as brothers and sisters. That’s essentially all Governor Bentley said, it’s basically a tautology. Any journalist really should have some basic understanding of the subject he’s covering before writing an article on that subject. What’s offensive is for these crackpots to attack the governor simply for expressing his faith. There’s nothing at all offensive about any American expressing his faith, or wishing for others to join his faith.

But the reaction from advocates of “diversity” and “tolerance” was swift. From ABC News:

“We live in a country that is hugely diverse,” said David Silverman, president of American Atheists, the country’s oldest atheist civil rights group. “The governor basically said: ‘If you’re not like me, you’re second class.’ This is a man puts the Bible above the Constitution and his preacher above the president. His words are disgusting and bigoted and reinforce Alabama’s reputation for being backward and bigoted.”

The governor said no such thing. Mr. Silverman is merely projecting his own bigotry. If you object to Christians stating the basic tenets of their faith in public, then you do not in fact favor diversity or tolerance. And calling the group a “civil rights group” while they’re objecting to an American exercising his First Amendment free exercise rights was an especially nice touch.

Similarly, an activist with the Anti-Defamation League weighed in with some defamation:

A spokesman for the Anti Defamation League said the governor’s comments were “stunning” and “distressing” and were tantamount to proselytizing.

“It is stunning to me that he’d make those remarks. It’s distressing because of the suggestion that he feels that people who aren’t Christian are not entitled to love and respect,” said Bill Nigut, the ADL’s regional director.

“On the day that he is sworn in as governor, he’s sending a statement to the public saying if you’re not Christian you can’t be with me. From our point of view that is proselytizing for Christianity and coming very close to a violation of the First Amendment.”

But Governor Bentley didn’t say anything to suggest that non-Christians aren’t entitled to love or respect. Again, Mr. Nigut is projecting his own prejudice onto the governor. Being pro- your own group in no sense suggests hostility to other groups. Would Mr. Nigut accept the premise that if he said he was a proud Jew or expressed a special affinity for fellow Jews, that was anti-Christian, or anti-Muslim, or anti-anything? The idea is absurd, as is the ridiculous and somewhat Orwellian notion that an exercise of free expression violates the First Amendment.

More at RedState, well said.

Republican Senator Collins supports unconstitutional bill

From a report on the effort to create a new seat in the House of Representatives for Washington, D.C.:

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, who spoke in favor of the bill earlier this month, said the question of constitutionality should be resolved by the courts, not Congress.

Aside from her support for this unconstitutional bill, that statement alone should be disqualifying. Senator Collins, like all senators, takes an oath to uphold the Constitution. That oath is an independent obligation; her sworn duty cannot simply be passed off to the courts. Collins really needs a primary challenger the next time she’s up for re-election.

Chinese government implements Fairness Doctrine

A CNN blog reports on Democrats’ desire to censor conservative talk radio hosts:

Dems target right-wing talk radio

WASHINGTON (CNN) – ” More and More Democrats in Congress are calling for action that Republicans warn could muzzle right-wing talk radio.

Representative Maurice Hinchey, a Democrat from New York is the latest to say he wants to bring back the “Fairness Doctrine,” a federal regulation scrapped in 1987 that would require broadcasters to present opposing views on public issues.

“I think the Fairness Doctrine should be reinstated,” Hinchey told CNNRadio. Hinchey says he could make it part of a bill he plans to introduce later this year overhauling radio and t-v ownership laws.

Democratic Senators Debbie Stabenow of Michigan and Tom Harkin of Iowa added their voices recently to those calling for a return of the regulation.

Republicans oppose the Fairness Doctrine, arguing it would be wrong for the federal government to monitor political speech on the airwaves, in order to require opposing views.

It isn’t hard to imagine a different level of reaction from places like CNN if Republicans were in the majority and threatening the licenses of broadcasters who don’t have enough conservative views on the air. They’d probably even go so far as to report it on the air, rather than merely on a blog post on their website. Words like “fascism” and “Mccarthyism” would be used. And they’d be right. The Democrats are ready to go after talk radio only because the most popular voices on the air are conservative. It is entirely based on viewpoint.

In a similar story from the AP:

China to create blacklist of local journalists

BEIJING (AP) – ” China plans to create a blacklist of journalists who break its reporting rules, state media reported Friday, adding to an array of controls used to restrict its domestic media.

According to a report in the China Press and Publishing Journal, the agency that exercises control over the state-owned Chinese media plans to “establish a database of media professionals with a bad record.”

It said reporters who violate the rules or laws will have their press cards taken away. “Their names will be entered into the list and they will be restricted from news reporting or editing work,” Li Dongdong, deputy director of the General Administration of Press and Publication, was quoted as saying.

As noted here at Townhall.com, the so-called “Fairness Doctrine” isn’t the only way for Democrats to try to suppress conservative speech. There are a number of less direct or perhaps less visible ways for them to try to accomplish the same goal. The Democrats’ willingness to even consider such an open and direct assault on the 1st Amendment should be very troubling to every American who values the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

And a fascist doctrine roundup from Michelle Malkin.

Obama is like the weather…

…just wait a little while and he’s sure to change:

ABC News’ Teddy Davis and Alexa Ainsworth Report: With the Supreme Court poised to rule on Washington, D.C.’s, gun ban, the Obama campaign is disavowing what it calls an “inartful” statement to the Chicago Tribune last year in which an unnamed aide characterized Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., as believing that the DC ban was constitutional.

“That statement was obviously an inartful attempt to explain the Senator’s consistent position,” Obama spokesman Bill Burton tells ABC News.

obama - words are cheap Yeah, obviously. Nice move, now Obama can tailor his eventual position on the subject to the Supreme Court ruling after it’s released.

From The Campaign Spot: “All statements by Barack Obama come with an expiration date. All of them.”

UPDATE: Excellent news – the Supreme Court has upheld the individual right of the people to keep and bear arms in the United States. The Constitution won by a single vote.

Mario Cuomo: Strict Constructionist or Fantasist?

Mario Cuomo, who for some inexplicable reason seems to have a reputation among Democrats as some kind of intellectual, has an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times Monday morning that, don’t laugh, tries to make a sort of strict constructionist case against the liberation of Iraq.

The glaring factual errors begin in the first paragraph:

“Meanwhile, President Bush continues to insist that as commander in chief, he has the constitutional power to go to war and decide when to end it, unilaterally.”

But this is quite simply and obviously a lie. President Bush does not now and has never insisted such a thing. He did in fact receive authorization from Congress to invade Iraq.

Here’s the nut of Cuomo’s argument:

“The war happened because when Bush first indicated his intention to go to war against Iraq, Congress refused to insist on enforcement of Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution. For more than 200 years, this article has spelled out that Congress — not the president — shall have ‘the power to declare war.'”

Many consider the “Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of United States Armed Forces Against Iraq” in 2002 to be equivalent to a declaration of war. It’s debatable whether the Constitution requires the words “declaration of war” to be used for it to count, but the fact remains the president sought and received authorization from Congress.

It’s interesting how suddenly the “living, breathing Constitution” crowd becomes interested in exact wording when something they don’t like happens.

Incidentally, we don’t recall any similar article from Cuomo in the 1990s, and can’t imagine him writing one then.

But here’s where Cuomo drifts from his usual foolish talk into daftness:

“Nor were the feeble, post-factum congressional resolutions of support of the Iraq invasion — in 2001 and 2002 — adequate substitutes for the formal declaration of war demanded by the founding fathers.”

The Iraq invasion began in March 2003. So how could there have possibly been “post-factum” resolutions of support substituting for a declaration of war in 2001 or 2002? What in the world is the man talking about there?

The president received legal authorization for the invasion of Iraq from Congress before the war. Isn’t there one fact-checker or editor left at the Los Angeles Times, or did they all get laid off already?