Federal Healthcare Takeover re-awakens popular interest in constitutional limits on government power, role of courts
The massive expansion of Federal government power that culminated in this last weekend’s “historic” vote for what is essentially a takeover of healthcare is an unprecedented intrusion into the most personal of human rights and decisions, in the face of overwhelming popular opposition and openly engaging in the worst kind of dirty machine power politics (arm-twisting, vote-buying and out-and-out bribery that would get any regular citizen thrown in jail…)
It is increasingly clear that We The People cannot trust our elected officials (who increasingly appear to view themselves as rulers, not representatives of the citizenry) to restrain themselves from abusing the power that we have placed into their hands.
The single positive result of this repugnant display – which may not be new, but has never been so apparent – is the re-awakening of popular interest in constitutional restraints on the scope and extent of government authority. The ongoing devolution of our constitutional republican form of government (limited powers, delegated authority based on the consent of the governed) into mob-rule democracy (constrained only by momentary and shifting balances of power) has highlighted the need for limits like never before – and is also raising awareness of the role of our 3rd branch of government (the judiciary) in either undermining or upholding those limits, which constitute the very essence of the rule of law which safeguards our rights and our liberty.
Our Constitution’s father, James Madison, explained: “The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government, are few and defined … (to be) exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation and foreign commerce.”
When government – at the behest of our elected or appointed officials – oversteps its authority, as laid out in our “rulebook” (the Constitution), it is up to We The People (who have delegated specific powers and authority, but retain all rights) to stop them. The Courts provide the mechanism to do so without violence – and our judges, especially at the highest levels (state and Federal Supreme Court) fill the role of referee, applying the laws and ensuring that the rules in our “rulebook” are observed and obeyed.
Several state Attorneys General – including Colorado Attorney General John Suthers – have joined to file a lawsuit in response to the Federal government attempted takeover of healthcare as “an unconstitutional expansion of federal power” that violates the rights of states and individuals:
Suthers said the health care bill, by requiring all Americans to buy health insurance, violates the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which says “powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.”
Given the political and procedural difficulties inherent in repealing laws once passed – including a certain presidential veto – it may well be that the ONLY feasible “way to stop this federal overreach is through the courts.” (“Kill It In Court” editorial)
When judges fail in their duty to apply the law in accordance with the “rulebook” (our Constitution) – either ignoring existing law, or inventing new law (“legislating from the bench”) they have abandoned their proper role as referees and become players – or bystanders. Both alternatives are dangerous – our system cannot abide judges who cannot, or will not, uphold the rule of law.
In Colorado, we have experienced the worst examples of this – a majority of our state Supreme Court justices have repeatedly demonstrated a willingness to ignore, re-write, or otherwise violate our state Constitution. Fortunately, We The People of Colorado have the right, the opportunity, and the civic duty to hold our judiciary accountable through the process of retention elections – phrased in the form of the ballot question: “Should Justice X be retained in office? Vote Yes or NO.”
Yes, you can exercise your right to vote “NO” on the four ‘unjust justices’ of the Mullarkey Majority (Michael Bender, Alex Martinez, Nancy Rice, and Chief Justice Mary Mullarkey) who need YOUR approval to continue taking away your constitutional rights: your right to vote on tax increases, your right to defend your home and business from seizure by rapacious governments, and your right to enjoy the benefits of the rule of law, instead of suffering under rule by activist, agenda-driven “justices.” Support Clear The Bench Colorado with your comments (Sound Off!) and your contributions – and vote “NO” on retaining these unjust justices on the bench this year!