- The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation - http://blog.heritage.org -

The Latest Obama Threat to U.S. Sovereignty

Posted By Conn Carroll On April 1, 2009 @ 11:43 am In First Principles | Comments Disabled

Ceding control of financial regulations to the European Union [1]is just the beginning of the Obama Administration war on the sovereignty of the United States of America. Just last week, President Barack Obama nominated former Clinton administration official Harold Koh to become the State Department’s legal adviser [2]. Koh describes himself as a “transnationalist” and in a 2006 Penn State International Law Review article [3] he described what this meant:

Generally speaking, the transnationalists tend to emphasize the interdependence between the United States and the rest of the world, while the nationalists tend instead to focus more on preserving American autonomy. The transnationalists believe in and promote the blending of international and domestic law; while nationalists continue to maintain a rigid separation of domestic from foreign law. The transnationalists view domestic courts as having a critical role to play in domesticating international law into U.S. law, while nationalists argue instead that only the political branches can internalize international law.

The transnationalists believe that U.S. courts can and should use their interpretive powers to promote the development of a global legal system, while the nationalists tend to claim that U.S. courts should limit their attention to the development of a national system.

NRO’s Ed Whelan explains [4] what Koh is trying to accomplish with his transnationalist faction:

What judicial transnationalism is really all about is depriving American citizens of their powers of representative government by selectively imposing on them the favored policies of Europe’s leftist elites.

Koh has been a particularly big fan of assaulting U.S. sovereignty via the International Criminal Court. Hudson Institute senior fellow John Forte explains [5]:

Koh’s proposed remedy to American exceptionalism is for “American lawyers, scholars and activists” to “trigger a transnational legal process,” of “transnational interactions” that will “generate legal interpretations that can in turn be internalized into the domestic law of even resistant nation-states.”For example, Koh suggests that, “human rights advocates” should litigate “not just in domestic courts, but simultaneously before foreign and international arenas.”Moreover, they should encourage foreign governments (such as Mexico) and transnational NGOs to challenge the US on the death penalty and other human rights issues.

Supporters of the International Criminal Court should, Koh recommends, “provoke interactions between the United States government and the ICC” that might lead to the US becoming enmeshed in the ICC process (by, for example, having the US provide evidence in ICC trials). These interactions with the ICC would show cooperation with the tribunal and therefore “could be used to undermine” the official US “unsigning” of the treaty because it might “constitute a de-facto repudiation” of the “act of unsignature.”

Heritage fellow Steven Groves summed up the situation for Fox News [2]:

The president should have the right to choose the most conservative or liberal legal advisers to give them advice, but this is much more than that. The concern is that he cares as much about — if not more about — international law and integrating that into the American judicial system than he does about protecting American prerogatives and American sovereignty.


Article printed from The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation: http://blog.heritage.org

URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2009/04/01/the-latest-obama-threat-to-us-sovereignty/

URLs in this post:

[1] Ceding control of financial regulations to the European Union : http://www.foundry.org/2009/04/01/morning-bell-the-g20-threat-to-economic-recovery/

[2] nominated former Clinton administration official Harold Koh to become the State Department’s legal adviser: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/03/31/obamas-appointment-koh-state-department-legal-adviser-stirs-controversy/

[3] 2006 Penn State International Law Review article: http://www.law.yale.edu/documents/pdf/Alumni_Affairs/Koh_Why_Transnational_Law_Matters.pdf

[4] explains: http://bench.nationalreview.com/post/?q=NmNiMDk2NDcyZWI2MTY2NzVjYzk2YjIxNDc1YWE0YWU=

[5] explains: http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=MDBhMDk5NzFkZGIwMDI0ZDM3ZDQzYzBjNTk1ODg0YmQ=

Copyright © 2011 The Heritage Foundation. All rights reserved.