Jewish World Review August 1, 2014 / 5 Menachem-Av, 5774
Proposed amendments reek of hypocrisy
By Jonah Goldberg
http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Let us now praise Democratic hypocrisy.
Throughout my life, various Republicans have suggested amending the Constitution in one way or another. A few years ago, they suggested revising the 14th Amendment to get rid of automatic birthright citizenship. Before that, some proposed amending the Constitution to lock in the traditional definition of marriage.
On nearly every occasion, Democrats opposed such efforts, not just on the merits but on the puffed-up principle that we mustn't "tinker" or "tamper" with the genius of the Founding Fathers' constitutional design.
"We should not mess with the Constitution. We should not tamper with the Constitution," Sen.
"I respect the wisdom of the founders to uphold the Constitution, which has served this nation so well for the last 223 years," Sen.
As a conservative, I'd be the last person to deny that these men had a point. Mucking about with the Constitution is heady stuff, and we shouldn't consider doing so lightly.
But the real reason these Democrats opposed "tampering" with the Constitution wasn't reverence for the genius of the founders. What they really opposed was tampering with a status quo they benefitted from. These same Democrats are the first to applaud when the
This saccharine tommyrot is the exact opposite of reverence for the Constitution; it is reverence for liberal judicial activism.
Now Democrats have changed their mind. Earlier this month the Democrat-controlled
On the merits it's a horrible idea, motivated in part by a desire to bleat about the evils of the Koch brothers in Democratic fundraising pitches.
The stated intent is to allow the government to regulate how much money people and corporations can donate to political campaigns. But such regulations can quickly step on the First Amendment. Recall that the Citizens United case made it to the
But even though I think the proposed amendments are ill-conceived, I am delighted that the Democrats have taken this route. This is exactly how we're supposed to change the meaning of the Constitution. If the Constitution forbids X but the American people decide -- through extensive political debate -- that X should be permitted, then the only legitimate course of action is to change the Constitution to allow X. Stacking the courts with priests of Living Constitution cult who will simply rewrite the Constitution by fiat is lawless, undemocratic and anti-constitutional.
The Democrats' hypocrisy amounts to real progress.
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