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July 24, 2023

The same leftists who love to throw around words like “dictator” to describe President Trump are actively encouraging President Biden to act like one.

A couple of leftist academics, Harvard law professor Mark Tushnet and San Francisco State University political scientist Aaron Belkin wrote an open letter to Biden, calling on him to defy Supreme Court rulings that he considers “mistaken,” in the name of “popular Constitutionalism.”  Specifically, they’re talking about the Court’s recent ruling against race-based college admissions.  Just ignore it, they essentially tell Biden, and follow your own interpretation of the Constitution.

Ironic note:  if they want to argue “popular Constitutionalism,” perhaps they should look at recent polls that show race-based college admissions are not popular, even in California, where a majority support the Supreme Court and disapprove of affirmative action in schools.  No, it’s these academics’ OWN values they want to impose when they talk about ignoring checks and balances, not the popular will.

Other Presidents through history have grappled with this kind of idea.  (Abraham Lincoln actually did it when he suspended habeas corpus, but he was fighting the Civil War.)  And Trump has certainly made statements meant to discredit the judiciary, though he did not go as far as to directly defy Court decisions.  But these academics are actually trying to LEGITIMIZE doing just that --- as long as only their side does it.

Jonathan Turley wrote a great column about this over the weekend, pointing out that in order to justify this behavior from the White House, leftists have “come to embrace the authoritarian language and logic of segregationists in calling for defiance and radical measures against the Supreme Court.”

Indeed, as Turley points out, it was Democrat segregationist Alabama Gov. George Wallace, about 60 years ago, who in speaking about the order to desegregate schools said, “I shall resist any illegal federal court order.”

Even if something WERE the popular will --- as school segregation mostly was in the South 60-plus years ago --- that wouldn’t make it right for an executive to violate a Supreme Court ruling.  And when it’s the U.S. President involved, the “states’ rights” argument doesn’t even factor in.

These two academics say something eerily similar to Gov. Wallace’s pronouncement:  that when “the Court’s interpretation of the Constitution is egregiously wrong,” the President should refuse to go along with it.  They rationalize their view by saying (I kid you not), this is “not a normal Supreme Court.”  What??  I guess by “normal,” they mean one that agrees with them.

They say “MAGA justices,” who pose a “grave threat,” need to be “restrained.”

To that end, they support “expansion” of the Court, adding that “in the meantime, the threat that MAGA justices pose is so extreme that reforms that do not require Constitutional approval are needed at this time, and advocates and experts should encourage President Biden to take immediate action to limit the damage.”

And they go further to enlist Congress and the public: “Popular Constitutionalism is not a silver bullet against MAGA justices.  Its success requires support from members of Congress and the public generally.”  Ironically, one risk they cite is the precedent this will set for REPUBLICANS to ignore the Court down the road.  In other words, it’s great --- even necessary --- for the left to do this, but not for others.

“In light of Dobbs as well as ongoing revelations of judicial corruption,” they say, “a solid majority of the public understands the danger posed by unchecked MAGA justices,” because “what they pretend to pass off as law is often just partisan and ideological nonsense...”

“The President has the power to clip MAGA justices’ wings right now,” they actually wrote in a sentence.  This is tyranny disguised as protection from tyranny.

Here’s their letter…

Here’s Jonathan Turley’s column for THE HILL...

And here’s a must-read commentary from Jim Thompson at REDSTATE.  It cites an example from 1820 in which President Andrew “Trail Of Tears” Jackson (the racist founder of the Democratic Party) acted in effect as a proxy king when he ignored a Supreme Court ruling about Cherokee rights that he and the governor of Georgia disagreed with.  Thompson rightly goes on to say that we’re in the midst of a constitutional crisis, “one caused by a cabal of palace partisans who want to abandon the Constitution, but only when it suits them.”

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Comments 1-7 of 7

  • Oscar Pearson

    07/24/2023 07:14 PM

    He already is acting like a dictator!

  • Paul Kern

    07/24/2023 07:14 PM

    "Popular Constitutionalism!" Another Marxist cultic term. Right now the left working overtime to destroy the Constitution. From our founding many have tried to overthrow the Rule of Law. The left attempting another French Reign of Terror! European elites have always detested the 1776 revolution because it put the power in the people's hands. Freedom is rare. Only God knows the outcome. I pray He will raise up real church leaders and sons of Issachar. We can not hide like ostriches!

  • Stephen K Lentz

    07/24/2023 06:46 PM

    Archer has canceled on the committee, again. This is the third time. Oversight Chairman James Comer has already subpoenaed him, so he’s wondering, “Now what?”

    NOW WHAT for sure!!! You rinos are SO PREDICTABLE!! Now what??? I can answer that for you rinos -- NOTHING AS USUAL!!

  • Patrick J Green

    07/24/2023 06:36 PM

    Here is something I learned the other day about some of these names the left loves to throw around like transphobe and other ???phobia. The word phobia means your afraid of something, I don't know about anyone else but I can assure you that I am not afraid of a bunch of derailed people

  • Michael Meskimen

    07/24/2023 05:31 PM

    Dear Mike

    For you

    Carry on Sir,

  • Kenneth Rumbarger

    07/24/2023 03:37 PM

    Things like this are why I strive to remember and observe Isaiah 51:12. It begins, "I, even I, am the one who comforts thee." What follows really surprised me when I first read it: "Who art THOU, o man, that thou shouldest fear a man that will die...and forgettest thy God..."? To God, it's not those who seek to frighten us who are exalting themselves, so much as he expects US to remember our place as His children and not put the frightening sight of them above our faith in Him. Read the chapter in context because it elaborates even more on this idea. Yes, these liberal academics have frightening plans. But He is bigger than they are, and He tells us not to forget that.

  • stephen russell

    07/24/2023 02:34 PM

    Leftists want dictatorship:
    37% want Online Censorship
    Others want Govt & Pvt censorship
    Until it effects Them