Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Bringing the courts back under the constitution

Newt Gingrich just gave this speech:
Now, I wanted to come today to talk about a historic crisis that only indirectly relates to the president. You know, Abraham Lincoln said, if you debate somebody who does not agree that two plus two equals four, you probably can't win the argument because facts make no difference. And I want to start with that example.

Imagine that by a 5-to-4 vote the Supreme Court decided that two plus two equals five. Under the current theory which the Warren court promulgated in 1958, the only effective recourse would be either, A, to get a future Supreme Court to reverse them, or B, to pass a constitutional amendment declaring that two plus two equals four.

Now I want you to think about the absurdity of this. I mean, do any of you seriously believe that five appointed lawyers decided two plus two equals five, that the rest of us would promptly change our school textbooks, change our accounting systems? I mean, some people may. That could well explain Obama's budgeting system.

But -- (laughter) -- but obviously this is absurd. It can't possibly be true that the Founding Fathers wrote into the Constitution a very elaborate, complex process of amending the Constitution and said, however, that if the Supreme Court is split 4-to-4 between liberals and conservatives, and Justice Kennedy gets up in the morning, he becomes a one-person Constitutional Convention. If he gets up and he feels conservative that day, it must be a conservative Constitution. If he gets up and he feels liberal that day, it must be a -- this is an absurdity foisted on us in 1958 by a historic lie. There is no judicial supremacy. It does not exist in the American Constitution. (Cheers, applause.)

Let me be clear. Judicial supremacy is factually wrong, it is morally wrong, and it is an affront to the American system of self-government. (Cheers, applause.)
He sounds as if he just read The Supremacists: The Tyranny of Judges — and How to Stop It, by Phyllis Schlafly, as you can order here.

For the opposite view, California Governor Jerry Brown just vetoed a bill with this statement:
This measure would overturn a California Supreme Court decision that held that police officers can lawfully search the cell phones of people who they arrest. Courts are better suited to resolve the complex and case specific issues relating to constitutional search-and-seizures protections.
No, the governor should not be letting the courts decide the state policy on cell phone searches. That is just the sort of judicial supremacy that Gingrich rightfully denounces.

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