US Constitution Requires that State Constitutions Are Subordinate

Submitted by SadInAmerica on Sat, 04/04/2009 - 2:11pm.

Amending the constitution of any state should of necessity be patterned after the US Constitution by the requirement that two thirds of the state legislature vote to amend followed by referral to the people of that state with three fourths ratification.

Amending constitutions is a sacred procedure in order to guard against popular propaganda and an emotionally charged society.

Under Article five of the US Constitution two thirds of the Congress are required to support an amendment to the constitution. Thereafter three fourths of the states are required to ratify the amendment.

Under Article six, all laws [including the Constitution] made by the United States are the supreme law of the land…..Judges in every state shall be bound thereby, any thing in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding.

Amending the constitution of any state should of necessity be patterned after the US Constitution by the requirement that two thirds of the state legislature vote to amend followed by referral to the people of that state with three fourths ratification.

Anything less than that would constitute mob rule as warned by Thomas Jefferson.

Under this theory, Proposition 8 in California is invalid. The California Supreme Court should bring the State Constitution into alignment with the US Constitution to protect minorities.

Where the initiative is incorporated into the state constitution, a reversal of the procedure could be recognized. However the percentages recognized would of necessity be of the complete number of registered voters within the state not merely those who voted.

This then should be ratified by two thirds of the legislature.

Any Arguments?

Doug Wallace, JD - April 3, 2009 - source OpedNews


An excellent response to this article by OpedNews member W.M.L.

First, the federal constitution is a limiting document.  The only powers the federal government has are those expressly granted to the federal government by the federal constitution.  "The 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." Amendment X to the U.S. Constitution.  Additionally, the founders wanted to make themselves clear on this point. 


Amendment IX reads:  "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."  This latter Amendment was added to the original Bill of Rights because the founders feared that an enumeration of rights such as the Bill of Rights might indicate to future generations that the federal government had all-encompassing power except for enumerated rights.  But the Ninth and Tenth Amendments make clear that the federal government has only the powers specifically granted by the Constitution, just like it had under the Articles of Confederation before it. 

As to state constitutions, there is nothing in the federal constitution that requires a state constitution to be amended in any specific way.  A state constitution stands on its own, and is only circumscribed in that it may not violate the federal civil rights (that have been extended to the states throught the 14th Amendment) of its citizens.  A federal citizen does not have a right to have a certain specific procedure for amendment of a state constitution.  This is a matter retained in the 9th and 10th Amendments to the states and the people.  

If you are a lawyer, you should know this.  It is black letter law.  First year stuff.  

by W.M.L. - April 3, 2009


Another intresting response by William Whitten

Any Arguments?

Only a practicle one. The US Constitution has been void for close to a hundred years.


Senate Report 93-549
"The Introduction to Senate Report 93-549 (93rd Congress, 1st Session, 1973) summarizes the situation that we face today -
"A majority of the people of the United States have lived all of their lives under emergency rule. For 40 years [now 66 years], freedoms and governmental procedures guaranteed by the Constitution have, in varying degrees, been abridged by laws brought into force by states of national emergency. The problem of how a constitutional democracy reacts to great crises, however, far antedates the Great Depression. As a philosophical issue, its origins reach back to the Greek city-states and the Roman Republic. And, in the United States, actions taken by the Government in times of great crises have - from, at least, the Civil War - in important ways, shaped the present phenomenon of a permanent state of national emergency."

"Since March 9, 1933, the United States has been in a state of declared national emergency. In fact, there are now in effect four presidentially proclaimed states of national emergency: In addition to the national emergency declared by President Roosevelt in 1933, there are also the national emergency proclaimed by President Truman on December 16, 1950, during the Korean conflict, and the states of national emergency declared by President Nixon on March 23, 1970, and August 15, 1971. "

I would note that every regime from that time forward had updated and maintained this state of emergency.

 William Whitten - April 4, 2009

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Submitted by SadInAmerica on Sat, 04/04/2009 - 2:11pm.