Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Check and Balance Judicial Supremacy

Alexander Hamilton called the judiciary “the least dangerous branch.” He wrote those words long before judicial supremacists began redefining marriage. But Hamilton and his fellow Founding Fathers gave us valuable tools to limit the damage, and we ought to use them now. In our system of checks and balances, judges don’t have the final say. President Andrew Jackson recognized this fact when he said about the then chief justice, “John Marshall has made his decision, now let him enforce it.” Abraham Lincoln had a similar response to the Supreme Court’s decision in the Dred Scott case. He told the country we should not submit to the dictates of “that eminent tribunal.” Both of those Presidents understood that the judiciary is only one of three branches of government. Its duty is to interpret the Constitution, not rewrite it. Jackson and Lincoln both knew that enforcement was ultimately up to the people.

Congress has an important role in restraining judicial supremacy. The Constitution gives Congress the power to remove issues from the jurisdiction of the courts. Congress has exercised this power frequently since the Constitution was adopted. Bill Clinton, among others, recognized this power when he signed legislation to block some lawsuits against gun manufacturers. Congress can also refuse to pay for enforcement of decisions it doesn’t like. When a court ordered a Cross removed from public lands, Congress banned the use of federal money to carry out the order. President Clinton approved that action, too.

It is time for Congress to use its powers to protect marriage. Congress should remove federal jurisdiction over marriage. Orders to recognize same-sex marriage that are contrary to state law should not be funded. Presidential candidates should be encouraged to use executive power to push back against judicial supremacy on marriage. I urge you to set up a local group to meet regularly and study my book on the courts called The Supremacists.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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