Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Why Gingrich's supposedly brilliant ideas wouldn't work

Ramesh Ponnuru explains.


rcocean said...

I don't really understand this point. (Assuming this is actually what Newt said):

"And he wants to abolish liberal circuit courts and replace them with conservative ones, which is an obvious attempt to ignore the Constitution’s grant of life tenure to judges."

Congress has the power to establish whatever lower courts it wants per the constitution and give them whatever power it wants.

"The judicial Power of the United States, shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish."

There's no reason why the current circuit can't be reduced in juridiction and a new circuit court put in its place.

If that's really what Newt states.

John Althouse Cohen said...

The real problem with Gingrich's view of the federal circuit courts is more fundamental, which is that he doesn't respect separation of powers. He thinks if he's politically opposed to what a court does, he should have the power to abolish that whole court.

rcocean said...

Newt's point is that the Judicary hasn't respected the 'Separation of Powers' and needs to be reined in.

In any case, why should these lower courts be running around striking down state laws or legislating from the Bench? That's not in the constitution.

"The separation of Powers" is just a cant phrase. The real issue is: who is to rule? The Congress, elected by the people, or small group of un-elected federal judges who are accountable to no one.

Anyhoo, like your blog and don't want to spam your comment section.

John Althouse Cohen said...

You're not spamming; I welcome the comments.

What's the constitutional basis for courts to strike down state laws? How about the Fourteenth Amendment?

rcocean said...

OK, where is that 'right' in the 14th amendment? Tell me in explicit language.

I'd submit that if the people who ratified the 14th Amendment in 1870 (?) had know it gave US Federal Courts the super-secret "right" to strike down any state/local law it never would've passed.

For example, imagine if people in 1870(?) had known the 14th Amendment would be used to strike down any state law banning abortion. If they'd known, they would've put in a clause stating the exact opposite!