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An Unconstitutional Compromise

Written by JB Williams

©2005-04-28

Compromise like patience, can be a virtue, just not one of mine, especially when it comes to current attempts to renegotiate the US Constitution.

Democrats try in desperation to block Bush’s so-called “ultra-conservative” judicial appointments by using the only power they have left, the filibuster. The filibuster has never been used to block Presidential appointments before and doing so now compromises the legitimate constitutional appointment process that has been in use for more than 230 years.

Every nominee deserves an up or down vote via the process defined in the constitution and even democrats know it. But because an up or down vote would likely result in the confirmation of some judges deemed to be too conservative by liberals, the constitutional process is being thwarted by way of unprecedented use of the filibuster.

This, my friends has the makings of a true constitutional crisis and a so-called litmus test administered by Americas left is the sole reason behind it.

Not long ago, heart surgeon turned Senate majority leader Bill Frist of Tennessee was touted by both sides of the aisle as one of the best and brightest men in Washington. That’s before he was left with no alternative but to meet democrats head-on over their undermining of this constitutional process.

Now he is just another neocon who they attempt to paint into a corner using terms like “nuclear option” to describe his plan to eliminate the filibuster tool as relates to Presidential appointments. This alleged “nuclear option” amounts to nothing more than forcing the legitimate appointment process to continue as it was written in the constitution and practiced for 230 years.

But to hear democrats talk about it, Frist is Satan himself, single handedly deconstructing the constitution. As has become too common, democrats once again find themselves attacking the constitution and the founder’s intent in their game of political one-upmanship.

Most democrats know this, but many justify these tactics in their own minds under the heading of “all is fair in love, war and modern day politics”. Since the American people have presently left democrats with no other power, they now use the filibuster for everything.

Though the debate over judicial appointments has been framed around landmark decisions like Roe vs. Wade or gay marriage, the issue is really much broader than that.

The judiciary is under increasing scrutiny for their menacing in the legislative process. Instead of applying laws and constitutional protections as written, they have adopted the practice of legislating from the bench on almost everything, inserting their personal agendas, often at odds with written laws and basic constitutional rights.

This is the heart of the debate… Few conservatives anticipate that even the most conservative of judges will mess with Roe vs. Wade directly, quite the opposite actually. There remains the same basic difference between conservative and liberal views that has always existed.

True conservatives look only to have judges that will uphold, protect and defend the constitution “as written”, and the laws as they were passed by the legitimate legislative body.

Liberals have always seen the constitution (and the law) as a “living, breathing instrument” subject to negotiation and redraft at will via judicial interpretation.

It is very simple really. The founders designed methods by which even the constitution itself could be changed, but they intentionally made it a cumbersome process. They established a body of locally elected officials sent to Washington to represent “we the people” and gave them the sole responsibility and power to make or eliminate laws on the behalf of the people who elected them.

Allowing judges, whether conservative or liberal, to play legislator undermines our entire system of self-governance. It replaces the will of the people with the will of a single judge or a single court on the basis of a single case with a single set of circumstances, sometimes unrelated.

Roe vs. Wade is a perfect example. Most Americans believe that abortion is legal in America. Yet the legislature who has the sole power to make law has passed no law legalizing abortion. So how did it become legal?

On the matter of gay marriage rights, the people have spoken in overwhelming numbers. Almost every state in the country has now outlawed same-sex marriage at the state level. Is there any chance the federal legislature will act against every state and the vast majority of people to legalize gay marriage through the legitimate legislative process? I don’t think so…

Yet it may soon become legal via judicial interpretation of the constitution which makes no mention of the topic. A Massachusetts court is busily working that angle as we speak. Since the constitution does not say gays can’t marry, it is the courts position that it is unconstitutional to stop gay marriage. Of course the constitution does not say that animals or trees can’t marry either…

Welcome to the show down over judicial appointments. Bush appointees have been chosen for their conservative views that cause them to simply uphold laws as they are written rather than re-write them from the bench. Liberals can’t pursue their agenda in the legislative process because the American people have spoken, both at the state level, and in the national elections.

So liberals must rely upon the courts as their only means to legislate policies at odds with the people and their legislature. Conservative judicial appointments would eliminate that last remaining option…the liberal agenda would be dead on arrival and there you have it.

…That’s why Senator Frist declined the recent “compromise proposal” from leading democrats to negotiate away the constitutional process. The so-called compromise offered by leading democrats to cherry pick some appointees in exchange for allowing them to circumvent the legitimate process was in the end, and should always be, unacceptable. If the balance of power were reversed, as much as I would hate it, I’d still be saying the same thing.

Frist is on the right track and he will do the right thing by nuking the filibuster related to Presidential appointees. Though it is unfortunate that such a measure is necessary…


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