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  • Morning Bell: A Troubling Trend in the Courts

    Should judges act based upon reasoned legal arguments, or based upon their personal feelings and media coverage?  A controversial recent “statement” made by Justices Ginsburg and Breyer in a case that was the legal equivalent of a slam dunk raises serious questions about what really guides some judges.

    In the case, American Tradition Partnership v. Bullock, the Court was asked to address a Montana Supreme Court opinion upholding a Montana ban on independent expenditures by corporations. This should be an easy case—after all, the Court ruled in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that bans on independent political expenditures by corporations and unions violate the First Amendment.

    But Justices Ginsburg and Breyer, who dissented from Citizens United, want another crack at Citizens United.  They issued a separate “statement” advocating that the Court take the “opportunity to consider whether, in light of the huge sums currently deployed to buy candidates’ allegiance, Citizens United should continue to hold sway.”

    As Heritage legal expert Hans von Spakovsky wrote:

    What evidence is there before Justices Ginsburg/Breyer that the allegiance of candidates is being bought?  The misinformed editorial pages of The New York Times?  The propaganda spewed out about Citizens United by MSNBC?

    von Spakovsky concludes regrettably that Ginsburg and Breyer are “making decisions based on their personal ideologies and political opinions” instead of relying on “actual evidence submitted in the cases before them.”

    Personal preferences and subjective editorials clearly shouldn’t form the basis for judicial decisions.  But what should guide their decisions, and how much power should the Supreme Court exercise? The Founders asserted that the judiciary would be the weakest branch of the federal government. As of late, however, the courts are looking pretty strong, particularly compared to a Congress that refuses to take their duty to interpret the Constitution seriously.

    In the latest “Understanding America: What is the Proper Role of the Courts?,” Heritage Senior Legal Fellow Robert Alt gives an example of how a “weaker” Congress leads to a “stronger” judiciary involving the very law at issue in Citizens United:

    When Congress was considering the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act—popularly known as McCain-Feingold—which imposed numerous restrictions on election-related speech, its Members delivered speeches acknowledging that provisions of the Act were likely unconstitutional. That should have ended the debate.

    But some Members surprisingly went on to state that questions of constitutionality were for the Supreme Court, not Congress, to decide, and that Congress should pass the legislation because it was too important not to enact. This was a flagrant abdication of Congress’s role in determining the constitutionality of legislation.

    In short, Members of Congress failed in their duty to uphold the Constitution and tossed that responsibility to the Supreme Court — a poor way to run a constitutional government. The Court’s power here is only a snapshot of increasingly customary and destructive tendencies toward judicial activism.

    The effects of liberal judicial activism are regrettably widespread.  Alt writes:

    The federal courts have awarded the federal government power to regulate matters well beyond its constitutional authority. The courts themselves have taken over school systems and prisons for decades at a time, created new rights found nowhere in the Constitution, whittled away at constitutional rights (like property rights) that they apparently dislike, and asserted that they have the authority to decide questions concerning how to conduct the War on Terror that are constitutionally reserved to Congress and the President.

    Americans should be concerned about the increasingly powerful judicial branch. With politicized appointments and repeated judicial failures to adhere to the Constitution as it is written, the public must demand action from the political branches.  Specifically, Americans must insist that the President and Congress do their duty by passing and signing only laws which are consistent with the Constitution’s original public meaning — and that they appoint and confirm only judges who check their personal agendas at the door.

    Quick Hits:

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    83 Responses to Morning Bell: A Troubling Trend in the Courts

    1. Jeff, Illinois says:

      How can anyone think / believe that unlimited and undisclosed source campaign contributions are a good thing for democracy or in any way are what our nation's founding fathers would have deemed as healthy??? Thank God someone is trying to open the door to turning back the Citizens United case, which in an of itself was a distorted ruling, given how it came about in the first place.

      • BobMark says:

        Get behind the concept of disallowing union participation in the campaign contribution shell game and maybe we can talk about repealing Citizens United. Particularly in light of decades of forced union membership and payment of dues with no right to determine how that money is spent (taxation without representation, hmmmmhhh?). Recent NLRB actions only further my point.

      • Roy S. Mallmann says:

        It will take a Constitutional Amendment ratified by 2/3 of the states to change it unless you are a liberal, or a Democrat, in which case you just ignore it altogether. I think it curious that Obama supporters decry The Citizen's United ruling while Mr. Obama disregarded all the campaign finance laws when he ran for president and had unlimited financing, much of which came from foreign countries. If you don't believe this why did he have campaign rallies in Germany and other foreign countries? He got caught with some but to this day hasn't provided a list of contributors. Citizen's United also allowed Unions but they were contributing before anyway.

      • bigjet says:

        We are NOT a democracy. Quit using this word for what we are NOT.

      • Gregory Norton says:

        How can anyone ask such a silly question? What evidence is there that the founders would have objected? How can anyone think that, had the founders deemed unlimited and undisclosed campaign contributions, they would not have said or done anything to prevent it?

        Unlimited and undisclosed are two different things, as should be obvious since they are two different words. What about unlimited but disclosed? Or limited but undisclosed? Might those possibilities be in the Progressive universe?

        The limits prevent qualified candidates of limited means from running. Unless the candidate has support from those excluded from the limits.

        Disclosure doesn't harm anyone and would be healthy, although the emanations and penumbras of the Constitution might indicate there is a right to privacy somewhere.

        Of course, the limits don't really apply to the unions who almost always support one particular party, the party that works so hard to increase union income and union power. Corruption? Nah.

      • Stephen says:

        It occurs to me the Honorable Ginsburg has looked in the mirror and seen much more than I see when I look at her. I know she is intelligent, her biography is replete with accomplishment but something has been missed. The Honorable Ginsburg apparently has a few holes in her reading and visualization skills. The Constitution is a relatively short document and even within that brevity, the portion that discusses the duties of a Supreme Court Justice is easily understood and makes no mention of creative writing, the ability to word search for hidden meanings, or innovative thought fabrication. More revealing is her apparent inability to find counter arguments to her falsely applied notion the Supreme Court has more legislative power than the Legislative Branch of Government which was specifically established for the duty of writing, voting for, and passing all Laws. Moreover, the Honorable Ginsburg clearly has neither read the citizen approval procedures for all Constitutional amendments outlined in Article V, nor studied the historical record of the Federalist Papers and their purpose in the ratification of the original document. It has never been the intent of our Constitution to bestow upon one Judge or 9 Judges the power to dictate policy or de facto law to 300 million citizens and by-pass the established amendment ratification procedures. The Federalist Papers had no expiration date and they are viable references today as to original intent. Additionally, not one Article, Section, or Amendment to the Constitution can be changed without ratification approval by the Legislatures of 3/4 of the 50 states. The Constitution "lives" because it can be amended when demanded by the People, absent that demand, it remains as written. The Honorable Ginsburg can assist the Supreme Court in determining appropriateness of Laws vis-a-vis the intent of the Ratified Constitution but she is remiss to suggest she has some self generated or consensus Judicial power to write Legislation from the Judicial bench or any other location she may position herself. She is simply, wrong.

      • Warrior says:

        It occurs to me the Honorable Ginsburg has looked in the mirror and seen much more than I see when I look at her. I know she is intelligent, her biography is replete with accomplishment but something has been missed. The Honorable Ginsburg apparently has a few holes in her reading and visualization skills. The Constitution is a relatively short document and even within that brevity, the portion that discusses the duties of a Supreme Court Justice is easily understood and makes no mention of creative writing, the ability to word search for hidden meanings, or innovative thought fabrication. More revealing is her apparent inability to find counter arguments to her falsely applied notion the Supreme Court has more legislative power than the Legislative Branch of Government which was specifically established for the duty of writing, voting for, and passing all Laws. Moreover, the Honorable Ginsburg clearly has neither read the citizen approval procedures for all Constitutional amendments outlined in Article V, nor studied the historical record of the Federalist Papers and their purpose in the ratification of the original document. It has never been the intent of our Constitution to bestow upon one Judge or 9 Judges the power to dictate policy or de facto law to 300 million citizens and by-pass the established amendment ratification procedures. The Federalist Papers had no expiration date and they are viable references today as to original intent. Additionally, not one Article, Section, or Amendment to the Constitution can be changed without ratification approval by the Legislatures of 3/4 of the 50 states. The Constitution "lives" because it can be amended when demanded by the People, absent that demand, it remains as written. The Honorable Ginsburg can assist the Supreme Court in determining appropriateness of Laws vis-a-vis the intent of the Ratified Constitution but she is remiss to suggest she has some self generated or consensus Judicial power to write Legislation from the Judicial bench or any other location she may position herself. She is simply, wrong.

    2. Rich says:

      It scares me more and more that the most critical decisions being made in this country are made not by the Congress (as they should be) but by one man — Anthony Kennedy. The four liberal justices on the Supreme Court have absolutely zero regard for the Constitution.For too many years the liberals in Congress have turned to the courts to overturn conservative laws. I don't think the Framers meant for nine UNELECTED justices to override the will of the people.

      • Don says:

        One of the rules for impeaching a judge should be whether the judge used his/her personnal perferences in determining a case instead of what the constitution says. Judges should have no leeway in determining any case; giving such leeway only produces the constitutional chaos the we have in the judiciary today. If judges what to legislate, they should run for office. They have no business creating laws and new social mores.

    3. L. Patches says:

      So from whom do " we the people" demand action from?

      • Mike Hebert says:

        GOOD QUESTION ! I love it when state/federal MANAGMENT – PASS THE BUCK – And NO ONE is held accountable, responsible, and somehow the Am. people 'pay the bill'….I stand 'amazed' at such highly educated – experienced – men & women, duly elected, sworn to a duty they desired to serve 'WE THE PEOPLE' , IN OUR BEST INTERESTS, IN ACCORD WITH THE AUTHORITY (the U.S.Constitution), NOT ANY ONE PERSON'S emotions, feelings, public 'sway' via 'CorporateMedia' – Special Interests – the like…UNFORTUNATELY – Matters pertaining to government, law, regulations, 'Country Policies / Procedures – OFFICE OF OPERATIONS (a.k.a., the Oval Office ?maybe!) —Who's the Chief Executive Officer of the United States? You know who. So is not the overall administration of government the responsibility of the one we call President? And don't tell me he / she has the priviledge of 'passing the buck' , THAT's a 'cop out' and they know it. THE BUCK STOPS IN THE OVAL OFFICE.

      • Gregory Norton says:

        We the people demand action from ourselves. We are sovereign. We instituted this government to secure and protect our rights. The government was not created by some aristocracy.

        But only adults need apply.

    4. oldgraymary says:

      And now you have Dallas judge Tonya Parker, a lesbian, refusing to marry straight couples, and PA judge Mark Martin, a Muslim, dismissing harassment charges against the offended Muslim who choked an atheist at a Halloween parade. If the judiciary are reinterpreting the laws to suit themselves, can we now reinterpret Shakespeare's line about killing the lawyers and add "Start with the judges"?

    5. A good place to start is with Judge David Nuffer, who has a documented history of successfully representing polygamists in their effort to adopt children who were not related to them. Later, the child of one of those children was raped at the age of 12 in a secret sex ritual at the YFZ Ranch in Texas, by Warren Steed Jeffs. At the time, Nuffer heralded the decision as one of "freedom" for polygamists. How exactly does this man deserve to be given a lifetime appointment to the bench if he has obviously indicated that the law [polygamy is illegal in all 50 states] is no barrier to polygamists adopting children?

      • Paleophlatus says:

        Check your Constitution, Art III section 1 about selection of Judges… You may have found our example to others of 'we the people' adjudication.

    6. Chris in Kalifornia says:

      They need to add one word to the oath of office. "Follow" , it should read "protect, defend and follow, the constitution…"

      • stephen says:

        So are you saying the Constitution should be taken literally and that there should be no recourse to the law?
        Based on who's interpretation?

    7. It goes without saying that our political system is changing and not in favor of "for the people." The blantent abuse by our elected officials regardless if it's in the jucdical system or in politics are the ones with power and authority making decisions that benefit their aggenda. The last paragraph where it says "the public must demand action from the political branches." is the key to resolving such arrogance abuse. The problem is getting the Americans who are not involved to get involved. "Maybe if American pride and patriotism is re-introduce in a way that ignites the American Spirit, along with re-educating that we are a Republic and why being a Republic is critical to stopping the few from making decisions for the many, we just might get through this divide in the United States of America. I don't know if it's okay to reccoment a video here but I'm going to anyway: http://wp.me/p2brPx-1u

    8. BD1752 says:

      No member of the Founding Fathers could have envisioned a Congress that would continually abdicate its responsibilites as laid out in the Constitution.
      Whenever a vacuum exists in the balance of powers between the three branches, one or more will fill that void. This is how we developed the imperial executive and have now an ascendent federal judiciary. Until Congress decides to live up to its Constitutional responsibilities we will continue to have a battle for supremecy between the executive bypassing Congress by regulatory fiat and a court system that continues to include its own personal ideology over legal arguments.

    9. Oscar Brown says:

      Thank you for once again clarifying the issue. If we desire to get back to Constitutional government, we must elect constitutionalists in both the legislative and executive. The more Originalists we have in congress, the more they will strive to make sure laws are constitutional in the first place. And with one of those in the Oval Office, as openings arise, the activists can be replaced. We do NOT live in a vacuum. It will require a concerted effort by all of us for a long time to get us back to where we belong. Let's get to work.

      • ChuckL says:

        We do not need to wait for openings to occur. The Constitutional limit on terms of all federal judges, including those on the Supreme Court is "during good behaviour". (sic)

        Using law from other countries and evidence that has not been presented as well as failing to use all applicable U. S. law IS BAD BEHAVIOR.

    10. Viet Nam Vet 67-68 says:

      When the Conservatives in Congress continue to appoint these Socialist/Communist appointees we will always have this type of indivigual thought (Marx, Lenin, Mao, Hitler) at the Supreme Court level just like the last appointee they just let in, another Socialist PIG.

    11. Jeff says:

      The problem we have with "Judges" who now make up the court is a fundamental change in law itself over the beginning on or about 1891 with "Blacks Law" which we use today and is used to make rulings. Case law or in simple terms what "man" says it right. As a judicial system we have totally taken "Gods" law out of the ruling process. I know this is controversial however it is the truth. For when there is no law higher than "mans" law there will eventually be trouble or discipline for those under the law. As evidence I would give you the history of "mankind" as evidence. Man's ability to choose the harder right over the easier wrong gives testament to this. Ethics is what "ought to be" and morality is "what is" in a society. Man determines what the morality will be. God's laws remain supreme and determine what 'ought to be". Simply put as a society, government, and Judicial system we have rejected God's law as Supreme and substituted "man's law". I believe if you study the history of law in this country you will find this to be the case.

    12. dam1953 says:

      Ginsburg needs to be careful with this line of reasoning because it may backfire on those of similar ideology. If corporations are banned from making political contributions what happens to S Corps, LLC's LP's etc. Banning contributions by these types of entities would be equivalent to suppressing the individual's free speech.

      The Montana case specifically mentions contributions by corporations and unions. Though corporate contributions are likely weighted more to conservative candidates and issues a significant amount of money goes to the liberal side as well. Unions contributions, on the other hand, are nearly all directed to liberal causes.

      Corporate political contributions makeup a very small fraction of their balance sheets. It is highly unlikely that any corporation contributes in excess of 1% of their revenue to political activities. By contrast, the largest unions consistently spend in excess of 10% on political activities and lobbying. So, the question that really needs answering is "If political contributions consistently constitutes a major expense category for any organization should't it be defined and regulated accordingly?"

      • ChuckL says:

        Political donations should be restricted to registered voters. That would automatically eliminate any non-human entity. The penalty for donating in the name of a deceased person should be life imprisonment and denial of any voting rights. (only necessary because of parole laws)

    13. Jim Delaney says:

      The courts have become a black-robed, unelected, unaccountable oligarchy which adheres to the principle of "judicial supremacy" over constitutional supremacy has become America's answer to England's Privy Council. In short, by the judiciary's non-stop and imperious violations of the Constitution, and Congress's habitually yielding to the courts' overreach, our liberties have been dangerously eroded, and our once grand Republic is headed straight for the ash heap. WE are to blame for this catastrophe. Impeachment and removal of activitist judges who violate their oath of office should begin with vigor and singlemindedness.

      • Richard says:

        Thank you sir, very much. I have felt EXACTLY the same way, but not educated enough to put it
        together so eloquently. It's encouraging to find people who care about what's happening to this country
        and more so when they can express it better than I can. We have a Congress that knows what's
        happening, and they do nothing at all!

    14. sdfultz says:

      Like President Obama said yesterday "The American people are not stupid" for you to insinuate that these people are donating all this money without consideration for service due upon arrival into office is ludicrous.
      I used to love reading the Foundry, but you're becoming just another bias rag.

      • Richard says:

        Heavens forbid you should ever read the New York Times or the Washington Post or watch David
        Letterman, or maybe Bill Lahr. The "rags" are coming! The "rags" are coming! They're everywhere!
        You actually have a bias against what people are saying in concern for the welfare of this country!? Wow, whatever makes you happy.
        Take off your political helmet and please take a few moments to think like an American citizen and show at least some "bias" for American heritage.

      • Jeff, Illinois says:


    15. DJ McCormick says:

      There are only two actions that can be taken to correct judicial activism: Activist judges should be disciplined or removed from office, or conservative judges should start ruling based on their personal feelings and beliefs. Since the first option is politically difficult and would generate a media outcry, the second seems far more tenable. Not too long after conservatie judges become activists, the media and liberals will all call for reforms in the judical process.

      • Paleophlatus says:

        Are we to be ruled by the media? Removal is the only just remedy for impropriety on the bench, media be damned. Speaking of which, the Internet has just about rung the bell on their livelihood. Only those whose work is worthy of being read will continue to exist.

    16. Ali Walker says:

      We have seen this kind of injustice take place in local judges as well. Nobody polices the police and the judges take advantage of their power. No telling how many people they hurt along the way. Their job is to uphold justice, not their own personal agendas. We need laws in place so they are held accountable for their actions.

    17. Jeanne Stotler says:

      It seems more and more Judges, Supreme court down, are ruling according to their beliefs and not by the Constitution or laws of the states. Anyone can take statements and twist them around to make the into what they are not, This should not happen in any court especially the Supreme Court. They take oaths just like POTUS and Congress BUT it seems that now days NO ONE takes their oath seriously. These were not just words, they placed their hand on the HOLY BIBLE and swore to GOD, I'd be afraid of being struck by Lightning if I were them, GOD will seek out his revenge.

    18. Federal courts began taking a significantly expanded view of federal power after the ratification of the 17th Amendment. The states, which had until then acted as sovereign entities, became little more than political subdivisions of an all-powerful and dictating federal government. Restoring federalism, real checks and balances, and the separation of powers will happen when we repeal the 17th Amendment. http://www.go-gary.com

      • patricia Smith says:

        I am tired of you guys telling me all the things Obama is doing that is unconstitutional but don't tell us what can be done about it except to vote. But what if he is re-elected ? Do we just allow him to run roughshod over our freedom's? Can he be impeached? I want to hear some solutions!

        • Jeanne Stotler says:

          Only if the Senate has a Rep. majority, need 2/3rd to proceed in the Senate after the artcles are filed by the house, at present Reid guards the door

        • Paleophlatus says:

          The Constitution openly allows removal by impeachment of any governmental officer, but this means conviction in the Senate, and we all know how that works out. Interestingly, the very next paragraph after the eligibility clause (Article II, sect 1 clause 5) starts out "in case of the removal of the President from office…( and amended by the 25th amendment, but not significantly changes this passage) which alludes to another method of removal. Were they referring to impeachment, why not just say so? Words have specific meaning in the Constitution, and it behooves readers to be aware of them. Such is felt to be the case. The District of Columbia is administered by Congress, which writes their laws. Chapter 35 of the DC Code (not the US Code) for Quo Warranto describes such a method. You may see an accurate rendition of it here: http://www.thepostemail.com/2009/10/08/quo-warren

          The following is a description of Quo Warranto. It is an old concept from the 1300's in English Common Law, allowing any subject to ask "by what authority do you hold this office". It still holds, and is believed to be applicable to the President…any of them, as long as actually holding the office at the time it is issued.

          ***A quo warranto may be issued from the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in the name of the United States against a person who within the District of Columbia usurps, intrudes into, or unlawfully holds or exercises, a franchise conferred by the United States or a public office of the United States, civil or military. The proceedings shall be deemed a civil action.***

          This has the ability to complete erase the usurper from history as ever having held any office, as well as the acts and deeds performed during that administration. A much cleaner and thorough separation than impeachment. But, if there is any good to reelection, this would be it, unless it be successfully applied before election time. An election defeat does not allow anyone to take their "baggage and rubbish" with them on exiting.

      • Paleophlatus says:

        I had wondered why the people thought it advisable to introduce the 17th in the first place, having seemed to work so well for many, many years as designed. But, after doing a little investigation, it seems even good ideas can get screwed up, as too many log-jams developed instead of selection of required members of congress.. Even the politics became too political, as it were. Going back to that system in these fractious times would likely bring out the worst in local legislatures again, methinks.

    19. zygote 1331 says:

      "Appoint and confirm only judges who check their personal agendas at the door" is a laughable and inconsistent point of view coming from the Heritage. Conservatives and Progressives alike are always seeking a litmus test from judges on specific issues from abortion to affirmative action. Your point would be better taken if you didn't take such a sanctimonious tone of view.

    20. Brenda Choate says:

      Judges should act on legal arguments ONLY. Judges can be dismissed from the bench under the Constitution. Perhaps Congress should make an example of one. Of the three branches of government, the Congress is first, the Executive is second, and the Judicial is third. The Judicial is and should be the weakest of the three.

      • Young82 says:

        They can be impeached for not adhering to their Oath of Office which reads,
        "I, _________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as _________ under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God."

    21. ROY S. MALLMANN says:

      Exactly what is it going to take to return to the premise that the Constitution of The United States is the Supreme law of the land? This is not the same country that I grew up in and we want our country back. Is it going to take a civil war to return this country to a constitutional republic? I sure hope not. If we do not impeach President Barack Obama and his Attorney General Erik Holder for the High Crimes and blatant violations of the law that they have committed, this is a distinct possibility. If you think that I am just a voice in the wind on this, one just needs to look at the huge increase in firearm and ammunition sales since Obama came to office and started violating the Constitution. The 2010 elections were a hint.

      • wessr says:

        Its reassuring to know that there are many of like mind. Every word you said is spot on and we are not alone. Discontenting winds are blowing.

    22. Guarionex Sandoval says:

      "It has long, however, been my opinion, and I have never shrunk from its expression … that the germ of dissolution of our federal government is in the constitution of the federal Judiciary; an irresponsible body, (for impeachment is scarcely a scare-crow) working like gravity by night and by day, gaining a little today and a little tomorrow, and advancing its noiseless step like a thief, over the field of jurisdiction, until all shall be usurped from the States, and the government of all be consolidated into one."

      –Thomas Jefferson, letter to Charles Hammond, 1821

    23. Brian says:

      Judicial activism is not new, will never be absent from our system of law, and is one of the most relevant manifestations of the importance of the vote. The Supreme Court reflects the hand that makes its appointment. If that hand is liberal, so will be its opinions.

      • Avery Brinkley Jr MD says:

        The Left is getting what it wants in judicial activism which effectively disarms one of three branches of government by allowing the Executive branch which appoints these goon judges to pervert the Constitution and our democratic republic.

    24. boberic says:

      All one has to do is read Mark Levin's book Men In Black to understand how ignorant some Supreme Court justices are. Under Mabury V Madison The Court usurped power that the founders didn't intend that the Court should posess. (Please excuse the incorrect spelling)

    25. Jim Patterson says:

      interesting post by Jeff from Ill. our founding fathers endured scathing newspaper articles written by nom de plumes and did not see fit to counter that with some sort of law requiring real names to be used. Money is speach and the Sup Ct was correct in its Citizens United decision case.

    26. Pat Allen says:

      Unfortunately, The Constitution's " original public meaning, " is interpreted differently by attorneys of opposing ideological camps, resulting in a more powerful judiciary. Bench appointments are critical in upholding our founding documents and the integrity of our Republic.

    27. ThomNJ says:

      Speaking of using one's own opinions to decide a case (I always think of the "wise Latina" remark with crap like this):

    28. knowsit says:

      If corporations should be restricted from political donations, then so should be all unions, especially unions of public institutions, that are corrupting this nation,
      Even and especially FDR, champion of private sector unions, said Public Sector unions will lead to absolute corruption of the government, because the tax payers are not represented in salary negotiations.
      It was Jack Kennedy, Camelot to the Democrats, who in a Presidential Executive Order facilitated this corruption to fester.
      Unions favor Democrats with election contributions, which in turn increase salaries of public sector union employees disproportionally in comparison to private sector workers salaries, which in turn again lead to higher union fees from public sector union workers and higher election contributions to Democrats.
      A vicious cycle of absolute corruption our elected officials allowed to continue for far too long.
      Elena Kagan should have been placed before a court, not on the courts highest bench, when during her confirmation hearing it was learned that she had tampered with Expert Testimony by American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology to the Supreme Court during the S.C's deliberation for the constitutionality of Partial Birth Abortion.
      Millions of babies have been killed during the last seconds of the birth of viable babies, before this hideous practice was declared unconstitutional.
      It was South Carlina's Senator Lindsey Graham, who provided the single Republican vote during the confirmation of Criminal Kagan to proceed to the Supreme Court.
      With idiots like Graham for friends, who needs enemies.

    29. Mary......WI says:

      Seems to me the Constitution of the United States is becoming a "thing" of the past. Elected officials take an oath to uphold the Constitution but then they disregard or trample all over it! And so , yes, as stated by L. Patches "from whom do "we the people" demand action ?" No one seems to care! Hope and Change turned out to be more ball and chain.

      This country scares me these days….. Canada is looking appealing….though healthcare would still be an issue.

    30. Francis Schoeffler says:

      The problem with a congress which has refused to support our constitution and given authority to our judicial system that is totally inappropriate is actually a basic moral issue.Those in the general population seeking political offices usually believe its ok to do anything necessary to achieve positions which supply power and wealth.The very idea of supporting our constitution and perhaps not getting elected again or a powerful political position during your term is enough to influence most of the persons seeking office.The men who built the republic were willing to give their lives to protect the liberty of their countrymen.This doesn't apply to most of the current politicians.

    31. RogCol says:

      It is now evident that those that control the Judiciary, controls the nation. When a Federal Judge can declare a law unconstitutional or the Supremes can make it up depending on political leanings, we have a serious problem with three co-equal branches of government. Use the Constitution for a basis of all decisions, with the few exceptions that could not have been considered due to technological advances.Elections have consequences, as shown by the deteriorating condition of our nation due to the current occupant of the WH.

    32. Pat Allen says:

      Unfortunately, the Constitution's " public meaning " is interpreted by attorneys from opposing ideological camps, skewing the original intent of our founding documents. Judicial appointments are critical if we are to desist from bench activism and uphold the integrity of our Republic.

    33. RG Schmidt says:

      "This was a flagrant abdication of Congress's role in determining the constitutionality of legislation."

      Quite true, but that abdication of power by the Legislative Branch is not limited to the Supreme Court. Congress also failed to stand up to the Executive Branch when Obama decided not to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act because HE felt it was unconstitutional, and again when he ordered the Justice Department to prosecute voter fraud cases only in those instances when the victims were black, just to cite two examples. Nothing new, here, and it didn't start recently, it's been going on for decades.

    34. STEVEN says:

      When you can't find justice in the courts it's time for the people to demand resignation of ANY activist judge on any court in the land! It is never in the courts purview to interpret the law!
      The courts only duty is to administer the law!
      The constitution is the law, it needs no interpretation!
      When the constitution says No it means no!
      There is no reason for ANYONE to ask "but what if?".
      When the phrase says these rights "shall not be infringed" it damn well means
      It does not need any interpretation!!

      Judges can be removed!
      It needs to be done and done now, to show JUDGES that they can't impose their personal beliefs on
      the people! They are not above LAW!

    35. J E Houser says:

      The judges should read and apply the Constitution as WRITTEN.

    36. knowsit says:

      If corporations should be restricted from political donations, then so should be all unions, especially unions of public institutions, that are corrupting this nation,

    37. old gaffer says:

      At some point, speech crosses a line and becomes yelling, or screaming, or ranting and raving, and the Freedom of Speech does not include the right to drown out dissenting voices, whether literally or figuratively.

      I greatly fear that unlimited expenditures in campaigns crosses that line, wherever it is.

    38. If you look back in history you will find that the judicial branch of government, the administrative branch and executive branch have been swapping constitutional responsibilities for years. Its been like a wish list by each branch. If you, the Supreme Court, will give up your responsibilities on something we want to control then we will give you control of something you want to control. If you Mr. President want more "executive power" then we in Congress will let you have those powers if you agree to approve what we want when we send legislation for your signature. What we have today is a mismatch of checks and balances that leaves the fox watching the hen-house in too many situations.

    39. Lloyd Scallan says:

      Congress passes the hot potato to the courts because they are deathly afraid of not being reelected. Supreme Court justices make ruling that are contrary to the Constitution because they have nothing to fear from the voters. The solution: have term limits for all federal courts judges and have the Supreme Court justices stand before the public by forcing them to run for office, not be appointed by a president that has an agenda, weather or not left or right, but based on Constitutional law.

    40. knowsit says:

      In the end it is the educational system in this nation that will determine the outcome of this struggle for the soul of this nation.
      Unfortunately, the radical leadership of the 60's revolution has recognized this 50 years ago, and has not only systematically invaded the management of our upper learning institutions, but by first adding state, then federal funding to the K-12 primary education system, has gained controlling influence over, and corrupted the curriculum of the primary education system. Gone are the primary emphasis on the "three R's", eliminated were the courses on history and our Constitutional Republic, replaced by Political Correctness and social studies that defamed America's history and achievements.

    41. Carol says:

      The Supreme Court should only and soly vote acording to the Constitution and take the will of the majority of the people. The court works for us not the president not the rep. they work soly for the people and it is what the constitution says that is the law………

    42. Carol Fay says:

      We have long been aware that we are living under a judicial oligarchy. Unelected, life term politicians
      make the most basic decisions for us. Yes, this is unconstitutional, but unless Congress and the President,
      –both of those offices have equal authority to interpret the Constitution — stand against the outrageous
      political activism of the Federal Courts, this morbid situation will not change. — There has to be strong,
      popular action demanding a return to the Constitution!

    43. toledofan says:

      There is a growing sense that we are truely at at turning point in our country; since Roosevelt, maybe even before, have we seen such an onslaught on the Constitution and the liberties, freedom and rights of Americans. We have let ourselves get out of whack, basically, because we are the ones who continue to look the other way and keep electing these people who have no regard for anything but themselves and their Democratic Party. Both parties are to blame for the mess, but, the lions share goes to the Democrats. The courts need to be reigned in by Congress but without any solid leadership or political will, it looks like we're stuck.

    44. John Szeker says:

      I have been concerned for years that our Federal judges, including the Supreme Court , have strayed from their main duty which is to interpret cases based on our constitution and have made decisions based on personal prejudices. I have always wondered why in the world Federal judges are appointed for life? No other public official has that kind of tenure. Our entire judicial system is flawed and especially our Federal courts. ALL federal judges should be appointed to terms similar to our members of Congress, and if they become incapacitated, for whatever reason, they should be removed and another judge fill their unexpired term. We the people should have some say in the appointment of judges in the same way we have in electing our people in Congress. No President should have absolute power to appoint any Federal judges who will do his dirty work and make such decisions that favor one party over another.

    45. Richard says:

      If Chicago-style politics worked in whatever country Obama is from, why shouldn't it work here ? The
      Supreme Court is just a speed bump when you're on your way to destroying THE SUPREME LAW OF THE LAND right?
      I feel too, that all those airheads that worked so hard to plant this monarchy are going to become subjects under that same rule. Despite their cries of "loyalist" they will be distrusted the same as any of us
      patriots. In the gentlest terms, it's called a rude awakening. Once the three branches of the former United States government are loaded in favor of one man, what in the world could those "whatever makes you happy" folks ever hope to benefit? Okay, probably legalized marijuana………..followed quickly by a 70 – 80%
      tax bracket. Monarchies ain't cheap. Ist Amendment stuff………..while I still can.

    46. steamboat says:

      Interestingly, in none of these comments did I see The Rule of Law mentioned (If it was and I missed it, sorry about that). It is the keel/rudder to our ship of state. Lost we drift aimlessly on the seas of "activist" emotions which ebb and flow subject to the winds of agenda, ideology, power and control. The Founders gave us a Declaration of Independence; the Framers, The Constitution of the United States of America. All we had to do was believe in and follow them, amending the latter in ways by vote we agreed needed amendment. Had that been done, the present elitist, fascist, tyranny would not have occurred, nor the need for restoration of America be so urgently required. Stand-up Americans! There is a smaller and smaller group of you every day, so the time is NOW!

    47. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      Equal justice for me but not for thee.

    48. gary sheldon says:

      A judge is supposed to interpert the law as intended by the lawmakers (such as they are in this twisted era) and not on how the judge FEELS. I am eternally mystified that justices who do otherwise, or think they know better than the citizens who may vote opposite the FEELINGS of a homosexual judge (as in California) are not impeached and removed from office and stripped of their pensions for their failure to do what they were CONSTITUTIONALLY "created" for in this one nation under God. They should do their job or get fired. Why Sotomayor and Kagen were given a pass by the so-called conservatives in the Senate is terrifying.

    49. Gregory Norton says:

      What is anyone going to do about it? Object in the most strenuous terms? Reiterate the most strenuous objection? Copy Demi Moore's character in "A Few Good Men" when she didn't like a judges ruling?

      At some point the tyrant learns he can ignore the laws because all that will ever happen to him is he has to listen to strenuous objections. A large percentage of the population doesn't care, another large percentage agrees with the tyrant (always, at any point in history, nothing new here.) One third of the people in the Colonies didn't care, another third agreed and sided with the colonial power (King George) but, somehow, here we are. If we had waited for the British crown to take seriously the strenuous objections, we'd still be colonies.

      Strenuous objections never saved anybody's life, never secured anyone's liberties, and never protected a law. Though they do provide fodder for grand speeches.

      What are you going to do?

    50. Mustang says:

      It is time for those selected to serve on the supreme court to be put there with term limits. No more of this for life B.S. as Ginsburg and the others that have gone way beyond theyears of common sense and love for this country and the constitution

    51. Paleophlatus says:

      I think most of us have labored under the conception that Judges of the Supreme Court have lifetime tenure. They may, but it's conditional…according to Article III sect 1 "…. The Judges, both of supreme and inferior courts, shall hold their offices during Good Behavior…"

      Good Grief…now we need a 'definition' of "good behavior", not too unlike "natural born citizen", in order to help clean that other 'house'.

    52. Dave Backs says:

      Unfortunately, only Newt Gingrich has discussed this ever growing problem. At present, Congress' failure to act on judicial "misconduct" has led us to the most overturned Circut Court in the nation spewing out decisions and getting overturned 90% of the time.
      How can "we, the people" get rid of such incompetents that our clogging our judiciary?

    53. Al from Fl says:

      So many of the issues going on in this country reflect a complete ignorance (or willful violation) of our Constitution. Unfortunately the last resort when the other two branches are failing is the supreme court where we have judges that, in my humble opinion, are not well schooled in that same constitution. In any case, when legislation comes to the court, it should be to determine its compliance with the constitution, not for the court to resolve the issue. It should go back to the legislature to change to meet their objective within the law.

    54. Chuck Sherman Jr says:

      The troubling trend has been going on in our courts for decades!!! Until we Conservative America loving patriots rise up against this it will continue!!!

    55. beacon01 says:

      Many federal judges have absolutely been groomed by the left for some years now, and
      are in position to do great damage to our country by ruling according to their indoctrination
      instead of by the rule of law. And now we have a muslim judge in California saying
      that if a muslim is offended by anyone, it is ok to assault that person, much like Holder is saying he will not prosecute black on white crime. What the heck is that all about? Have you ever read about an angry mob marching on a courthouse with a noose in their hands? Some things judges and prosecutors are doing now could cause just such a scene. Heaven forbid. Straighten up judges. This is America.

    56. wessr says:

      I can't agree more that the legislative body needs to implement Constitutional constraints on every legislative consideration. But, we have seen that they do not and probably will not always do their sworn duty.

      Our Constitution is OUR binding contract with government, federal and state. If these contracts are breached, we have the authority by those contracts to null and void any legislation that causes the breach. And if even the courts do not honor their sworn duty towards justice, we who are parties within the contract can also determine by legal authority to nullify any unconstitutional acts.

      The Constitution incorporates legal wordings (provisions) that require legal minds to determine intent for the sake of justice. If it becomes apparent to lay people who understand the founder's intent within the Constitution's provisions, then the courts nor congress nor the executive have exclusive authority to interpret intent and if they did (and they think they do), they could usurp, abuse power (they have).

      Since it has become common knowledge from understanding what our government is doing at times, is corruption, collusion and agendas driven by biased ideologies, we must take our stand as parties to the contract. In short, if any law is unconstitutional, we have a DUTY to nullify that law. Which means refuse to obey. If we do not take our stand we will not stand up against usurpers, traitors. Its that simple, its that serious. We fought our revolution war because of abuses of power against the citizenry . What today makes the situation we are facing any different?

      Jefferson and Madison had to deal with "nullification." They both put forth resolutions addressing an unconstitutional law, "The Alien and Sedition Act." They wanted a consensus from all the states to oppose the law. It didn't happen but (if I remember right) a subsequent administration repealed the law.

      Without drawn out detail, there is (trust as fact) presently, today laws being nullified by the people. Conversely, there are laws being nullified by the government (the most blatant example being the non-enforcement of illegal aliens). Nullification has other past precedents.

      A book: "Nullification" by Thomas Woods

    57. James Peck says:

      Frightening to say the least

    58. Jose Stelle says:

      The writer's point is well taken. However, the trouble in the courts, Congress, etc., is simply one more proof of constitutional infirmity. Time to abandon the call for a "return to the Fathers' 'original intent'" and move forward to Hayek's "constitutional reinvention" ("The Political Order of a Free People") which attempts to make real the essence of the Rule of Law. The Constitution is A rule of law, not THE Rule of Law. Time also for conservatives to stop praising democracy. Democracy is what is killing our goodly heritage of liberty. Democracy is inimical to ordered liberty. Madison should never have allowed this restless, socialist element into the Constitution. Hayek shows that one need not have democracy to have good government, and even he did not go far enough in eradicating this pernicious method. A method, as Schumpeter perceived, and as did Aristotle; it does not amount to a constitution. Ecrasez l'infame!

    59. R.Latzko says:

      What ever happened to the oath ALL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES TAKE TO "DEFEND AND SUPPORT THE CONSTITUTION". what a bunch of lying pukes.

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