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Repeal Seventeenth Amendment
State's Liberty Party ^ | John MacMullin

Posted on 10/20/2002 8:04:26 AM PDT by Boonie Rat

Repeal Seventeenth Amendment

By John MacMullin

With respect to states' rights, it should be readily apparent to all that state governments cannot exert any meaningful influence or control over the federal government, judiciary, or any other federal institution.<.u>

Let us state the problem precisely. At the present time, there are no checks and balances available to the states over federal power or over Congress itself in any area. However, in the history of our country, it was not always this way. In the original design by the Framers of the U.S. Constitution, there was an effective check on Congress through the state legislatures' power to appoint (and remove) U.S. Senators. As such, the core of the problem with state's rights issues lies in the passage of the 17th Amendment which abrogated the state legislatures' right to appoint U.S. Senators in favor of popular election of those officials. This amendment created a fundamental structural problem which, irrespective of the political party in office, or the laws in effect at any one time, will result in excessive federal control in every area. It also results in a failure in the federalist structure, federal deficit spending, inappropriate federal mandates, and the evaporation of state influence over national policy.

The reason for the passage of the 17th Amendment should be stated. The 17th Amendment was passed because of a procedural problem in the original concept and not because of a need to alter the balance of power. The procedural problem consisted of frequent deadlocks when the state legislatures were trying to select a senator. When deadlocked, a state would go without representation in the Senate. For instance, in the very first Congress, the State of New York went without representation in the Senate for three months. Additionally, numerous other problems resulted from the efforts to resolve individual deadlocks. The problem of deadlocked legislatures continued unabated from 1787 until 1913. The seventeenth amendment, calling for popular election of senators, fixed the procedural problems, but also inappropriately and unintentionally altered the balance of power. Instead, the 17th Amendment should have fixed the procedural problems and left the balance of power between the states and the federal government intact.

For more information, I respectfully refer you to a law review article that I wrote, Amplifying the Tenth Amendment, 31 ARIZ. L. REV. 915 (1989). This article was cited as "worth reading" by the National Law Journal, in its March 5, 1990, publication. Additionally, I direct you to two books written by George Haynes titled "The Senate of the United States" published in 1938, and "The Election of Senators" published in 1906. I believe that you will find that these references are well worth reading.

In my opinion, the 17th Amendment should be repealed. This would reinstate the states' linkage to the federal political process and would, thereby, have the effect of elevating the present status of the state legislatures from that of lobbyists, to that of a partner in the federal political process. The state legislatures would then have the ability to decentralize power when appropriate. It would give state legislatures direct influence over the selection of federal judges and the jurisdiction of the federal judiciary and much greater ability to modify federal court orders. This structure would allow the flow of power between the states and the federal government to ebb and flow as the needs of our federal republic change. The existing relationship, combined with the effect of the Supremacy Clause, is guaranteed to concentrate power into the hands of the federal government with little or no hope of return.

The constitutional amendment proposed would reinstate the states' linkage to the federal political process and would, thereby, have the effect of elevating the status of the state governments from that of lobbyists, to that of a partner in the federal political process. Figure A above portrays the existing relationship between the states and the federal government. This relationship, combined with the effect of the Supremacy Clause, is guaranteed to concentrate power into the hands of the federal government with little hope of return.

With the passage of the amendment, the state legislatures would have the ability to decentralize power when appropriate. After passage, it would primarily be the state legislatures interacting with their appointed senators, and not with the other branches of the federal government, that would establish the "line" between the federal and state governments. Figure B shows the effect of the passage of the proposed amendment on the relationship between the governments. This structure allows the flow of power between the states and the federal government to ebb and flow as the needs of our federal republic change. This structure also exemplifies the original concept of the Framers of the Constitution.

Illustrations by John MacMullin

john.macmullin@cox.net

John MacMullin has a private law practice in Phoenix, Arizona.and a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Arizona College of Law. His article, Amplifying the Tenth Amendment, 31 Ariz. L. Rev. 915 (1989) was cited as "worth reading" by the National Law Journal,


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism
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This would drive a stake through the heart of the monster in D.C. and help return us to an America envisioned by the founders.

Boonie Rat

MACV SOCOM, PhuBai/Hue '65-'66

1 posted on 10/20/2002 8:04:26 AM PDT by Boonie Rat
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To: Boonie Rat
--I believe one of the causes of the passage of the Seventeenth Amendment was the fact that in the latter part of the ninteenth century, the popular perception was that railroads and then Standard Oil controlled many state legislatures with the obvious result that they were also perceived as "owning" the Senate--

Electing them by popular vote was supposed to fix this--someone can correct me if I'm wrong--

2 posted on 10/20/2002 8:19:14 AM PDT by rellimpank
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To: Boonie Rat
This would have been a good idea a few decades ago. Not now. Notice how the internet is just beginning to affect senate races. Now imagine how much the internet will affect senate races 10 years from now. The only way corrupt politicians can survive now is with dead registered voters and candidate swapping [such as in NJ]. These are signs of desperation. The only problem with the 17th amendment was that it was too soon, before people were able to get quickly informed easilly.

3 posted on 10/20/2002 8:22:09 AM PDT by Arthur Wildfire! March
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To: Boonie Rat
The Federal Government will never check its own power. That is the whole reason for federalism and the reason the founding fathers adopted a federal system of government. There is no check at all on the federal government unless state sovereignty exists, and state sovereignty is itself meaningless without the right of secession. Thus Lincoln's war, by destroying the right of secession, also destroyed the last check on the potentially tyrannical powers of the central state.
The Real Lincoln by T.J. Dilorenzo page 267.

It would do everyone well to read this book to see how the Lincoln made a government of the people, by the people, and for the people a government of a priveledged few in power. Our government changed in 1865.

4 posted on 10/20/2002 8:23:04 AM PDT by vetvetdoug
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To: rellimpank
The 17th Amendment was a democratic ideal, to give each person more of a voice. That was too soon. It was only recently that people were informed enough to counter the huge war chests of corrupt senators without a miracle. The time for going back to state appointments has passed. It's looking backwards rather than forwards. Voters are generally more informed now. The trend has been that voters will be even more informed in the future. FReegards....
5 posted on 10/20/2002 8:25:02 AM PDT by Arthur Wildfire! March
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To: Boonie Rat
I have a hard time believing that deadlocks were the sole reason for passage of that amendment, or even figured at all in the decision. First of all, it's hard to see how such deadlocks actually prevented the Senate from doing its job, or resulted in an unfair administration of government. Secondly, if a state went un- or underrepresented as a result of deadlock, it was its own fault and should suffer the consequences. And finally, Congress has the power under the Constitution, if it so chooses, to make regulations regarding the manner of electing senators, and could therefore prescribe rules that would minimize or eliminate the deadlocks.

That said, I'm all in favor of a repeal of the 17th.

6 posted on 10/20/2002 8:26:39 AM PDT by inquest
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To: Boonie Rat
It would also mean that California's Davis and the assorted outcast garbage that now controls California's legislature would appoint their type of senator. You see kiddies our constitution implies a relatively homogenous people. It does not suppose the cesspool we are in the process of becoming.
7 posted on 10/20/2002 8:27:36 AM PDT by AEMILIUS PAULUS
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To: vetvetdoug
Wrong. The Civil War determined that the act of unilateral secession is not supported by the Constitution. There is no reason at all why a state or states could not leave the Union so long as it is done with the consent of all the affected parties.
8 posted on 10/20/2002 8:29:48 AM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: vetvetdoug
There is no check at all on the federal government unless state sovereignty exists, and state sovereignty is itself meaningless without the right of secession.

I do not seek states' rights so much as the right of informed voters. Sadly, we have to put up with the uninformed voters, the paranoid voters, and the intellectually lazy voters. Regardless, the overall result is I'm seeing more wisdom in the polls than I'm seeing in the professor-worshipping people we often elect.

What I would like to see is complete state authority [as a collective body] over the EPA, the Department of Education, the FBI, and other agencies that are making the Executive Branch too powerful.

9 posted on 10/20/2002 8:29:57 AM PDT by Arthur Wildfire! March
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To: Boonie Rat
Hey if this goes through, goodbye Hillary. I think the populace would lean on the legislature to get rid of her in a New York minute.
10 posted on 10/20/2002 8:31:43 AM PDT by pray4liberty
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To: inquest
Do you think the New Jersey state legislature would do a better job of selecting a senator than the voters of New Jersey? If given a choice between the Torch and Forrester, who would the legislature have chosen?

I think that it would have helped to appoint senators in the past. But now voters have better access to information.
11 posted on 10/20/2002 8:33:45 AM PDT by Arthur Wildfire! March
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To: pray4liberty
Hey if this goes through, goodbye Hillary.

I think that the voters of New York are changing much more quickly than their government is changing. If it hadn't been for that sudden marital problem, Guilliani would have beaten Hellery. But if the legislature had the power to appoint back then, not even sir Knight Guilliani could have beaten her.

12 posted on 10/20/2002 8:36:34 AM PDT by Arthur Wildfire! March
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March
Notice how the internet is just beginning to affect senate races.

No, I haven't noticed. All I've noticed is that most people I come in contact with still have no idea how to use the Internet, and when they do, it's to email someone about what they did last night, or to book a flight to Aruba. They certainly don't get any news from the Net that they wouldn't get from TV or any other source.

Until there's substantive change in the political system, then in all likelihood senators and other politicians are going to keep getting elected the way they always do: by spending large quantities of pork on their districts.

13 posted on 10/20/2002 8:37:29 AM PDT by inquest
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To: Boonie Rat
Bump
14 posted on 10/20/2002 8:40:24 AM PDT by Fiddlstix
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To: inquest
No, I haven't noticed. All I've noticed is that most people I come in contact with still have no idea how to use the Internet, and when they do, it's to email someone about what they did last night, or to book a flight to Aruba. They certainly don't get any news from the Net that they wouldn't get from TV or any other source.

The internet makes it much easier for conservatives in Fox News, talk radio, and political campaigns to get informed quickly and cheaply. It is just in its infancy, and it's already having a tremendous affect. You might not notice that disgruntled journalists who are getting shut out by the editors have been leaking to Drudge. Editors are no longer able to spike big news like they did in the past.

Until there's substantive change in the political system, then in all likelihood senators and other politicians are going to keep getting elected the way they always do: by spending large quantities of pork on their districts.

You think pork is bad now. What would it be like if we go back to appointments? State governments would love pork even more than the voters.

15 posted on 10/20/2002 8:45:43 AM PDT by Arthur Wildfire! March
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March
Then why have senators at all? The people already vote for a representative in Washington; voting for a senator is mere duplication.

With more and more senators receiving campaign contributions from out of state, they are even less likely to represent the interests of their state, which was the original intent of the framers.

16 posted on 10/20/2002 8:46:27 AM PDT by robertpaulsen
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March
If given a choice between the Torch and Forrester, who would the legislature have chosen?

Ah, but you see, one of the advantages of having a legislature choose senators is that they wouldn't have to pick between only two candidates, the way the voters have to. They can pick anyone they want.

And as for whether the legislature would pick a better senator, I can't say for sure. For one thing, if legislatures pick senators, it would change the way people would elect their state legislatures. Right now, most people couldn't care less who their state reps are, and in many districts they run unopposed. This leads to a complete subservience of state government to the feds. Giving state governments a tie-in to the federal government would change that.

Secondly, senators (and politicians in general) act the way they do in large part because of the influence of political pressure groups, whom they rely on for campaign funding. This would be rendered unnecessary if state legislatures were to choose them, since no senator would have to mount a multi-million dollar political campaign to get a legislature's attention.

17 posted on 10/20/2002 8:52:16 AM PDT by inquest
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To: inquest
If you want an example of the stark ingnorance and mob mentality of voters void of thought process, just reexamine the voters in Broward County Florida. The education system produces ignoramuses, pop culture takes over after they get their GED, liberal media and corruption does the rest to cannibalize our constitutional heritage. Repealing the 17th would remove the chase for money for each senator and shift influence to the states, where it rightly belongs. Imagine the effect on Senators who do not have to be fundraisers. What would they do with their time, then?
18 posted on 10/20/2002 8:53:20 AM PDT by foyen
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March
I view the US Constitution as a contract or compact among three parties - the federal government, the people and the states. The federal government is represented by the Presidency, the people by the House and the states by the Senate. The Seventeenth Amendment disrupted this balance of power, particularly in light of the supremacy clause and the doctrine of pre-emption.
19 posted on 10/20/2002 8:54:38 AM PDT by monocle
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To: Non-Sequitur
You admit the Civil War changed the Constitution in your statement. Hamilton, John Marshall, Daniel Webster, Tocqueville, Madison and William Rawle (all scholars on the Constitution) agreed that a singular state could seceed without the approval of other states.

It depends on the state itself to retain or abolish the principle of representation, because it depends on itself whether it will continue a member of the Union. To deny this right would be inconsistent with the principle on which all our political systems are founded, which is, that the people have in all cases a right to determine how they will be governed.
View of the Constitution 1825 by William Rawle, the textbook used for Constitutional intrepetation at West Point.

Explain West Virginia if your statement is correct.

20 posted on 10/20/2002 8:56:41 AM PDT by vetvetdoug
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March
The internet makes it much easier for conservatives in Fox News, talk radio, and political campaigns to get informed quickly and cheaply. It is just in its infancy, and it's already having a tremendous affect. You might not notice that disgruntled journalists who are getting shut out by the editors have been leaking to Drudge. Editors are no longer able to spike big news like they did in the past.

Sorry to be the one to have to break the news to you, but here it is: Most people don't care. I'm sure it makes consevatives feel better about themselves when they can annoy journalists, but from spending time in the real world among average people, I can tell you for certain that it's not making an ounce of difference in the way people think about politics - or even causing them to think about politics at all. They're going to keep voting the way they're voting, simple as that.

And if it does start to make a difference sometime in the future, then it will be enough that they'll still have the power to elect representatives, because representatives can stop any unconstitutional legislation or spending right in its tracks regardless of who's in the Senate, or the White House, for that matter. The HR is still the most important branch of government.

You think pork is bad now. What would it be like if we go back to appointments? State governments would love pork even more than the voters.

History doesn't seem to support you on that one. Governments may like money, but they also like sovereignty. People, on the other hand, can be bought much more easily.

21 posted on 10/20/2002 9:03:54 AM PDT by inquest
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To: Non-Sequitur
The Civil War determined that the act of unilateral secession is not supported by the Constitution.

I was unaware of that little tidbit of history. The Civil War was fought by lawyers and judges?

22 posted on 10/20/2002 9:07:04 AM PDT by inquest
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March
State governments would love pork even more than the voters.

But they sure as heck would NOT love unfunded mandates!

23 posted on 10/20/2002 9:13:24 AM PDT by freedomcrusader
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To: vetvetdoug
AMEN to that!!! Abraham Lincoln did his best to consolidate power into federal hands & away from the state governments. But back to the issue here: how in the world would a state legislateure, in it's right mind, vote for passage of the 17th Amendment??? Those that did so flat-out gave up their representation in the Senate--they practically said, "take away my voting privileges, I don't want them!" Could you imagine the uproar that would occur if the American people were not allowed to vote for their Representatives in the House? There would be riots in the streets! I just don't understand how the 17th Amendment could actually have been made part of the Constitution.
24 posted on 10/20/2002 9:33:46 AM PDT by libertyman
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To: inquest
Actually it was decided after the war when the Supreme Court rulled the southern acts of unilateral secession illegal in Texas v. White, 1869.
25 posted on 10/20/2002 10:44:15 AM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: Non-Sequitur
As if the judges were going to rule otherwise at that point.
26 posted on 10/20/2002 10:46:23 AM PDT by inquest
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To: vetvetdoug
You admit the Civil War changed the Constitution in your statement.

Nonsense, because you assume that the acts of unilateral secession as practiced by the southern states was allowed by the Constitution. As it turns out the Supreme Court determined that such actions were not allowed. So the Constitution itself was never changed.

Explain West Virginia if your statement is correct.

West Virginia is a perfect example of taking advantage of a situation as it presents itself. The people of western Virginia had never had anything in common with those in eastern Virginia who were running things and in spite of several pre-war conventions which were supposed to settle things they were still restive. Then along came the souther attack on Sumter. On April 17, 1861, a convention of Virginians voted to submit a secession bill to the people. Led by Clarksburg's John S. Carlile, western delegates marched out of the Secession Convention, vowing to form a state government loyal to the Union. Many of these delegates gathered in Clarksburg on April 22, calling for a pro-Union convention, which met in Wheeling from May 13 to 15. Following a Union victory at the Battle of Philippi and the subsequent liberation of northwestern Virginia by General George B. McClellan, the Second Wheeling Convention met between June 11 and June 25, 1861. Delegates formed the Restored, or Reorganized, Government of Virginia, and chose Francis H. Pierpont as governor. President Lincoln recognized the Restored Government as the legitimate government of Virginia. John Carlile and Waitman T. Willey became United States Senators and Jacob B. Blair, William G. Brown, and Kellian V. Whaley became Congressmen representing pro-Union Virginia.

After that it was all as outlined in the Constitution. Since the Restored Government was considered the legal government of Virginia, it granted permission to itself on May 13, 1862, to form the state of West Virginia. Following some dickering over the state Constitution, the United States Senate approved a statehood proposal on July 14, 1862. On December 10, 1862, the House of Representatives passed the act and on December 31, President Lincoln signed the bill into law, approving the creation of West Virginia. On March 26, 1863, the citizens of the fifty counties approved the statehood bill, and on June 20, the state of West Virginia was officially created.

27 posted on 10/20/2002 11:08:50 AM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: inquest
Just because you don't agree with a Supreme Court decision does not automatically mean that it was coerced or biased. The Chase court had ruled against actions of the Lincoln administration on prior occasions.
28 posted on 10/20/2002 11:10:23 AM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: Non-Sequitur
Unilateral secession=Hartford Convention; Supreme court ruled ex post facto. West Virginia..secession and the formation of a new state would be legal except there was no formal acceptance of the Confederacy (hence, the Yankee term "War of the Rebellion"). Virginia did not organize a vote on secession until Lincoln made an order for troops to invade the sovereign states of the South.

I would welcome an honest treatise on the actions of the government during the Civil War and the ramifications and the effect those changes had on our federalist state. Jackson, Jefferson, Calhoun, and Washington would be whirling in their graves if they could see what we have become and what Lincoln did to start a war to quell a "rebellion". What we do have are many apologists by the North writing to justify their ancestors' actions. The facts are there, one cannot validate their arguements when actions and facts are contridictory. The amount of information exposing the dictatorial government and the loss of Constitutional Order from 1861 to 1877 are legion.

The end

29 posted on 10/20/2002 11:55:55 AM PDT by vetvetdoug
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To: Non-Sequitur
Just answer me this: If there had been textual and historical support for the secession doctrine, can you seriously picture the supreme court in 1869 ruling that way? Be honest.
30 posted on 10/20/2002 11:56:32 AM PDT by inquest
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To: inquest
Probably not, I would have expected the Supreme Court to rule unilateral secession illegal had it been New England in 1814 or the confederacy in 1861. There is no support for unilateral secession. Even Rawle made it clear that secession was an action which should be made only after consultation with all the affected parties. In the Texas v. White decision, Chief Justice Chase made it clear that secession in and of itself was not out of the question, so long as it was done with consent of the states.
31 posted on 10/20/2002 12:31:24 PM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March
Voters are generally more informed now.

...informed on WWF and where to buy the cheapest Budweiser.

32 posted on 10/20/2002 12:36:23 PM PDT by Principled
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To: Boonie Rat
I'd rather see the Tenth Amendment enforced. Ashcroft seems to think it is the Tenth Commandment.
33 posted on 10/20/2002 12:43:54 PM PDT by gcruse
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To: vetvetdoug
The end? Far from it.

Unilateral secession=Hartford Convention

The Hartford Convention, and here is a Link to the document that was issued by it, did not declare the New England states independent. It did not threaten rebellion. Secession was dropped from discussion very early on. It was a list of amendments that the convention wanted added to the Constitution.

Supreme court ruled ex post facto.

Well...yeah. Show me a single Supreme Court decision that was not issued after the fact. That is the nature of the court and for it to do otherwise would be unconstitutional.

West Virginia..secession and the formation of a new state would be legal except there was no formal acceptance of the Confederacy (hence, the Yankee term "War of the Rebellion").

What did that have to do with it? The decision to partition Virginia was made by that organized legislature not in rebellion. Having been recognized as the sole legitimate legislature of Virginia, there was nothing illegal about their actions.

Virginia did not organize a vote on secession until Lincoln made an order for troops to invade the sovereign states of the South.

Lincoln did not issue his call for troops until after the south had initiated hostilities by firing on Sumter.

34 posted on 10/20/2002 12:44:53 PM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: Principled
I will not defend all voters. But just as an economic tides lifts all boats, the rising tide of information lifts all votes.
35 posted on 10/20/2002 2:03:45 PM PDT by Arthur Wildfire! March
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To: Arthur Wildfire! March
You are correct, Arthur Wildfire! March.

My comment is a reflection of my lack of confidence in Joe Six-Pak to vote wisely.

I do, however, have all the confidence in the world that Joe could protect us from the islamakazees if allowed to do so.

Thanks to the NRA

36 posted on 10/20/2002 2:12:54 PM PDT by Principled
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To: Non-Sequitur
That doesn't answer my question. I'll break it down. Imagine, for a second, that a valid argument can be made in favor of the legality of secession. Now, picture the supreme court actually acting upon those arguments and pronouncing secession legal - after the nation lost over 100,000 of their sons in a controversial (even up North) war to prohibit it. In other words, the court would be saying to them that they all died, and the country put through four years of hell, for nothing. Can you say Lynching?
37 posted on 10/20/2002 2:40:53 PM PDT by inquest
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To: Boonie Rat
bump
(Told you so ~2 yrs ago)
38 posted on 10/20/2002 4:42:05 PM PDT by Maelstrom
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To: inquest
If you read the Supreme Court decision, they did not say that secession was illegal, just that the manner that the southern states pursued was wrong. So your scenario did occure, in a way. Had the south been able to make a valid arguement for their actions then the Civil War wouldn't have happened in the first place.
39 posted on 10/20/2002 4:53:37 PM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: inquest
One can be assured that the US Supreme Court in 1869 was as unbiased and honest as the current Florida and New Jersy State Supreme Courts.
40 posted on 10/20/2002 6:52:26 PM PDT by vetvetdoug
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To: Boonie Rat; billbears; 4ConservativeJustices; Constitution Day; BurkeCalhounDabney
Bump for States Rights
41 posted on 10/20/2002 7:11:58 PM PDT by stainlessbanner
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To: vetvetdoug
Or the current Supreme Court?
42 posted on 10/21/2002 3:42:11 AM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: stainlessbanner
The problem with the election of senators by representatives was two parts - bribery, and the fact that a senator could be elected years before service. The next state legislature might attempt to elect it's own senator causing confusion over the legitimacy of the elections. The Confederate Constitution solved the problem by requiring that the senator be elected immediately prior to service, not years in advance.

Bump for Southern genius that preserved states rights, and the federal representation of the states interests.

43 posted on 10/21/2002 4:36:10 AM PDT by 4CJ
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To: Boonie Rat
Be careful what you wish for -- the state legislatures in many states with one or two Republican senators (like Tennessee, Alabama, and most other states of the old Confederacy) are controlled by democraps.
44 posted on 10/21/2002 4:42:33 AM PDT by Morgan's Raider
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To: Non-Sequitur
You're still avoiding my question. Yeah, I know the court said that states could secede with the consent of the other states (what orifice they pulled that one out of, I don't know, but it sure sounds to me like they're acknowledging that states have a certain sovereign character after all. Hmm...). My question remains, what if there had been support for the legality of unilateral secession? Could you picture the courts acknowledging that in the political climate of 1869?
45 posted on 10/21/2002 9:27:39 AM PDT by inquest
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To: Non-Sequitur; vetvetdoug
vvd: One can be assured that the US Supreme Court in 1869 was as unbiased and honest as the current Florida and New Jersy State Supreme Courts.

N-S: Or the current Supreme Court?

I'm not sure what the point of that second comment was. It sounds like you're acknowledging that court rulings don't "settle" anything. Indeed they don't. They only have a practical effect (at best).

46 posted on 10/21/2002 9:34:18 AM PDT by inquest
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To: inquest
I'm not avoiding anything. I cannot imagine the court comming to that conclusion in 1869 because I cannot imagine how they find such a right to unilateral secession in the Constitution. If such a right did exist then the whole war would have been avoided. Using your analogy then you might as well say that the court could never and would never overturn the right to an abortion for all the turmoil it would cause.
47 posted on 10/21/2002 9:35:45 AM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: 4ConservativeJustices
bribery...

Present-day senators engage in a much more dangerous bribery of their electors.

...and the fact that a senator could be elected years before service.

Congress has always had the power to revise or impose the time and manner in which its members are chosen. If they wanted to prohibit members from being chosen years before, they could have easily done that without going through the trouble of passing an amendment. And in fact, the 17th amendment didn't even prohibit that from happening. The states could still determine the times of election anyway, until Congress intervened, as before.

48 posted on 10/21/2002 9:42:06 AM PDT by inquest
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To: inquest
They don't "settle" anything because there are people who immediately assume that every decision rendered by the court that they don't agree with must be due to bias or corruption or whatever. They don't admit to the possibility that maybe, just maybe, they're wrong. So is the case with millions of Democrats with Bush v. Gore in 2000. So is the case with you and Texas v. White. A case is not invalid because your or I disagrees with it.
49 posted on 10/21/2002 9:47:13 AM PDT by Non-Sequitur
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To: Non-Sequitur
I cannot imagine the court comming to that conclusion in 1869 because I cannot imagine how they find such a right to unilateral secession in the Constitution.

I might just as easily say that I can't imagine how they found such a prohibition of unilateral secession in that document. But what I'm asking of you is to assume to begin with that there is a plausible construction of the Constitution that could support unilateral secession, and then ask yourself if the court could realistically be expected to apply that construction at that particular point in our history. If you can't, then it makes no sense for you to say that Texas vs. White settled anything, because the court had to rule the way it did. They knew what the conclusion had to be from the beginning of the case, and then set themselves upon the task of validating it however they could. But the only way a ruling on anything can be convincing is if it's uncoerced.

And the abortion controversy doesn't even begin to compare whith what the Chase court was facing.

50 posted on 10/21/2002 10:00:50 AM PDT by inquest
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