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There is No "Fourteenth Amendment"!
U.S. News & World Report ^ | September 27, 1957 | David Lawrence

Posted on 10/07/2013 5:59:11 PM PDT by 11th_VA

A MISTAKEN BELIEF — that there is a valid article in the Constitution known as the "Fourteenth Amendment" — is responsible for the Supreme Court decision of 1954 and the ensuing controversy over desegregation in the public schools of America. No such amendment was ever legally ratified by three fourths of the States of the Union as required by the Constitution itself. The so-called "Fourteenth Amendment" was dubiously proclaimed by the Secretary of State on July 20, 1868. The President shared that doubt. There were 37 States in the Union at the time, so ratification by at least 28 was necessary to make the amendment an integral part of the Constitution. Actually, only 21 States legally ratified it. So it failed of ratification.

The undisputed record, attested by official journals and the unanimous writings of historians, establishes these events as occurring in 1867 and 1868:

Outside the South, six States — New Jersey, Ohio, Kentucky, California, Delaware and Maryland — failed to ratify the proposed amendment.

In the South, ten States — Texas, Arkansas, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi and Louisiana — by formal action of their legislatures, rejected it under the normal processes of civil law.

A total of 16 legislatures out of 37 failed legally to ratify the "Fourteenth Amendment."

Congress — which had deprived the Southern States of their seats in the Senate — did not lawfully pass the resolution of submission in the first instance.

The Southern States which had rejected the amendment were coerced by a federal statute passed in 1867 that took away the right to vote or hold office from all citizens who had served in the Confederate Army. Military governors were appointed and instructed to prepare the roll of voters. All this happened in spite of the presidential proclamation of amnesty previously issued by the President.

New legislatures were thereupon chosen and forced to "ratify" under penalty of continued exile from the Union. In Louisiana, a General sent down from the North presided over the State legislature.

Abraham Lincoln had declared many times that the Union was "inseparable" and "indivisible." After his death, and when the war was over, the ratification by the Southern States of the Thirteenth Amendment, abolishing slavery, had been accepted as legal. But Congress in the 1867 law imposed the specific conditions under which the Southern States would be "entitled to representation in Congress." Congress, in passing the 1867 law that declared the Southern States could not have their seats in either the Senate or House in the next session unless they ratified the "Fourteenth Amendment," took an unprecedented step. No such right — to compel a State by an act of Congress to ratify a constitutional amendment — is to be found anywhere in the Constitution. Nor has this procedure ever been sanctioned by the Supreme Court of the United States.

President Andrew Johnson publicly denounced this law as unconstitutional. But it was passed over his veto. Secretary of State Seward was on the spot in July 1868 when the various "ratifications" of a spurious nature were placed before him. The legislatures of Ohio and New Jersey had notified him that they rescinded their earlier action of ratification. He said in his official proclamation that he was not authorized as Secretary of State "to determine and decide doubtful questions as to the authenticity of the organization of State legislatures or as to the power of any State legislature to recall a previous act or resolution of ratification."

He added that the amendment was valid "if the resolutions of the legislatures of Ohio and New Jersey, ratifying the aforesaid amendment, are to be deemed as remaining of full force and effect, notwithstanding the subsequent resolutions of the legislatures of these States." This was a very big "if."

It will be noted that the real issue, therefore, is not only whether the forced "ratification" by the ten Southern States was lawful, but whether the withdrawal by the legislatures of Ohio and New Jersey — two Northern States — was legal. The right of a State, by action of its legislature, to change its mind at any time before the final proclamation of ratification is issued by the Secretary of State has been confirmed in connection with other constitutional amendments.

The Oregon Legislature in October 1868 — three months after the Secretary's proclamation was issued — passed a rescinding resolution, which argued that the "Fourteenth Amendment" had not been ratified by three fourths of the States and that the "ratifications" in the Southern States were "usurpations, unconstitutional, revolutionary and void" and that, "until such ratification is completed, any State has a right to withdraw its assent to any proposed amendment." "Reconstruction added humiliation to suffering.... Eight years of crime, fraud, and corruption followed and it was State legislatures composed of Negroes, carpetbaggers and scalawags who obeyed the orders of the generals and ratified the amendment."

W. E. Woodward, in his famous work, "A New American History?" published in 1936, says:

"To get a clear idea of the succession of events let us review [President Andrew] Johnson's actions in respect to the ex-Confederate States.

"In May, 1865, he issued a Proclamation of Amnesty to former rebels. Then he established provisional governments in all the Southern States. They were instructed to call Constitutional Conventions. They did. New State governments were elected. White men only had the suffrage the Fifteenth Amendment establishing equal voting rights had not yet been passed].

Senators and Representatives were chosen, but when they appeared at the opening of Congress they were refused admission. The State governments, however, continued to function during 1866.

"Now we are in 1867. In the early days of that year [Thaddeus] Stevens brought in, as chairman of the House Reconstruction Committee, a bill that proposed to sweep all the Southern State governments into the wastebasket. The South was to be put under military rule.

"The bill passed. It was vetoed by Johnson and passed again over his veto. In the Senate it was amended in such fashion that any State could escape from military rule and be restored to its full rights by ratifying the Fourteenth Amendment and admitting black as well as white men to the polls."

In challenging its constitutionality, President Andrew Johnson said in his veto message:

"I submit to Congress whether this measure is not in its whole character, scope and object without precedent and without authority, in palpable conflict with the plainest provisions of the Constitution, and utterly destructive of those great principles of liberty and humanity for which our ancestors on both sides of the Atlantic have shed so much blood and expended so much treasure."

Many historians have applauded Johnson's words. Samuel Eliot Morison and Henry Steele Commager, known today as "liberals," wrote in their book, "The Growth of the American Republic":

"Johnson returned the bill with a scorching message arguing the unconstitutionality of the whole thing, and most impartial students have agreed with his reasoning."

James Truslow Adams, another noted historian, writes in his "History of the United States":

"The Supreme Court had decided three months earlier, in the Milligan case, ... that military courts were unconstitutional except under such war conditions as might make the operation of civil courts impossible, but the President pointed out in vain that practically the whole of the new legislation was unconstitutional. ... There was even talk in Congress of impeaching the Supreme Court for its decisions! The legislature had run amok and was threatening both the Executive and the Judiciary."

Actually, President Johnson was impeached, but the move failed by one vote in the Senate.

The Supreme Court, in case after case, refused to pass on the illegal activities involved in "ratification." It said simply that they were acts of the "political departments of the Government." This, of course, was a convenient device of avoidance. The Court has adhered to that position ever since Reconstruction Days.

Andrew C. McLaughlin, whose "Constitutional History of the United States" is a standard work, writes:

"Can a State which is not a State and not recognized as such by Congress, perform the supreme duty of ratifying an amendment to the fundamental law? Or does a State — by congressional thinking — cease to be a State for some purposes but not for others?"

This is the tragic history of the so-called "Fourteenth Amendment" — a record that is a disgrace to free government and a "government of law."

Isn't the use of military force to override local government what we deplored in Hungary?

It is never too late to correct injustice. The people of America should have an opportunity to pass on an amendment to the Constitution that sets forth the right of the Federal Government to control education and regulate attendance at public schools either with federal power alone or concurrently with the States.

That's the honest way, the just way to deal with the problem of segregation or integration in the schools. Until such an amendment is adopted, the "Fourteenth Amendment" should be considered as null and void.

There is only one supreme tribunal — it is the people themselves. Their sovereign will is expressed through the procedures set forth in the Constitution itself.


[OCR'd text from U.S. News & World Report, September 27, 1957, page 140 et seq.]

TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Extended News; Government
KEYWORDS: 14thamendment
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To: Southern by Grace

I do most of what you mentioned, other than calling my congress critter - not worth the time ...

21 posted on 10/07/2013 6:52:43 PM PDT by 11th_VA (I want a president who won't enforce tax laws ...)
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To: 11th_VA


22 posted on 10/07/2013 6:53:43 PM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: 11th_VA

That’s why you need an oMao phone. 250 minutes will get the word out. /sarc

23 posted on 10/07/2013 6:54:24 PM PDT by Southern by Grace (kickbacks, bribes, maifia payoffs is how the D's get R' done!)
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To: VerySadAmerican
This country would have been a lot better off if the “rebels had won.

Ah, but for Hooker zigging when he should have zagged and a few more company's of fighting men at Little Round Top. History turns quite often in a span of inches or mere moments.

24 posted on 10/07/2013 6:57:38 PM PDT by atc23 (The Confederacy was the single greatest conservative resistance to federal authority ever.)
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To: 11th_VA

The Sixteenth Amendment was never ratified either, and yet we have the IRS.

25 posted on 10/07/2013 7:09:26 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Who knew that one day professional wrestling would be less fake than professional journalism?)
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

Yea well the federal reserves 99 year charter was up last year and there still steal everything they can.

26 posted on 10/07/2013 7:11:00 PM PDT by Southern by Grace (kickbacks, bribes, maifia payoffs is how the D's get R' done!)
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To: LegendHasIt

I’m white and I picked more cotton than I ever wanted to. So there were plenty of whites willing to do it. I chopped cotton, too. Never had to pull indigo, though.

And by the way, the blacks got paid the same as whites. In the sixties the pay was $3.00 per hundred pounds.

27 posted on 10/07/2013 7:11:45 PM PDT by VerySadAmerican (".....Barrack, and the horse Mohammed rode in on.")
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To: Southern by Grace
Good thing we live in a country that believes in the rule of law.
28 posted on 10/07/2013 7:13:33 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Who knew that one day professional wrestling would be less fake than professional journalism?)
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To: gorush

I must disagree with you on your first point.

29 posted on 10/07/2013 7:14:03 PM PDT by Controlling Legal Authority
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To: shego
Well, duh. Would you allow John Walker Lindh to vote of hold office? Well, our ancestors felt the same way about "citizens" who take up arms against their country.

I just had a flashback to the days of former Freeper Non-Sequitor.

30 posted on 10/07/2013 7:16:09 PM PDT by Texas Mulerider (Rap music: hieroglyphics with a beat.)
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To: VerySadAmerican

A lot of people don’t realize some slaves were paid back in the old South, and some of those saved up and bought their own freedom.

31 posted on 10/07/2013 7:27:57 PM PDT by Cyber Liberty (It's hard to accept the truth when the lies were exactly what you wanted to hear.)
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To: 11th_VA
There is No "Fourteenth Amendment

True, but even if it were, it was never meant to have perpetual operation. It was simply a one-time naturalization Act for the freed slaves.

If it had been intended as such to be one of permanent operation, Congress would not have passed Bills like this:

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

December 9, 1872
42nd Congress, 3rd session
HR3059 By Mr. Young:

A Bill To relieve citizens of the United States from all disabilities imposed by the fourteenth amendment of the Constitution of the United States.
That all disabilities imposed by the fourteenth amendment of the Constitution of the United States be, and they are hereby, removed.

[Due to #PresidentStompyFoot and his tantrums, the Library of Congress is down, but this is the page;]


That's right, boys and girls, the government has been systematically turning us into a socialist country by mandating 'equality' based on a part of the Constitution that currently has no more legal operation than the 'grandfather' clause does!

32 posted on 10/07/2013 7:36:02 PM PDT by MamaTexan (Due to the newly adopted policy at FR, every post I make may be my last.)
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To: 11th_VA

It sure has caused a lot of hell to not exist.

33 posted on 10/07/2013 7:38:36 PM PDT by Sequoyah101
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To: VerySadAmerican

1760s to mid 1860s is what I was writing about, as far as cotton pickin’ goes. It became a moot point in 1865.

34 posted on 10/07/2013 8:05:23 PM PDT by LegendHasIt
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To: familyop; Secret Agent Man

I can’t take credit for the first part.
An old time CIA guy told it to me.
I just added the second part.

35 posted on 10/07/2013 8:08:57 PM PDT by LegendHasIt
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To: 11th_VA

and let’s not forget the missing 13th amendment

36 posted on 10/07/2013 8:14:08 PM PDT by eyeamok
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To: 11th_VA

For later study......(sounds rather strange.)

37 posted on 10/07/2013 9:09:01 PM PDT by matthew fuller
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To: 11th_VA
Wow - the whole system is built on a lie ...

"To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible."
      -- St. Thomas Aquinas

38 posted on 10/07/2013 9:12:43 PM PDT by brityank (The more I learn about the Constitution, the more I realise this Government is UNconstitutional !!)
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