Archive for the ‘The Constitution’ Category

Greg Jarrett’s op-ed is must reading if you want to know the difference between the Democrats’ definition of impeachment and the Constitution’s definition of impeachment.

Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution defines the basis for impeachment as an act of “treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors.” Anything less than that is not an impeachable offense. Were it otherwise, those who authored that esteemed document would have so stated.

Sadly, then-Republican Rep. Gerald Ford, as House minority leader in 1970, forever mangled the impeachment provision when he mistakenly observed: “An impeachable offense is whatever a majority of the House of Representatives considers it to be at a given moment in history.”

This was precisely what our framers did not intend. This is what they feared. They did not want a sitting president to be removed because a capricious Congress controlled by an opposing party disliked a chief executive or disagreed with his policies.

Republicans better get their act together on this. Democrats have declared war on President Trump and Republicans. Senate Republicans better prepare for warfare. They should opt to shut down the trial, if the House of Representatives approves articles of impeachment.

Here’s why: Nothing that President Trump has done comes close to meeting the constitutional test of “treason, bribery or high crimes and misdemeanors.” In fact, President Trump hasn’t come close to committing a crime, much less a high crime. When Bill Clinton was impeached, a grand jury identified a series of felonies that he’d committed.

Let’s remember that, in the end, President Clinton paid Paula Jones a small ton of money and surrendered his law license in Arkansas. He wouldn’t have had to do those things if he hadn’t initially been indicted.

Mentioning Biden’s name and Biden’s son’s name in the phone call with Ukraine’s President Zelenskyy wasn’t the best thing to do but it doesn’t come close to a high crime. That isn’t just my opinion. That’s Alan Dershowitz’s opinion, too.

The charade may eventually succeed in the House, where Democrats holds a comfortable advantage and a simple majority is all that is needed to impeach. But conviction in a trial in the Republican-controlled Senate will fail miserably because a two-thirds majority is constitutionally required.

This was the wisdom of the framers. They knew that unscrupulous politicians would inevitably try to subvert the democratic process for purely political reasons. The framers made it exceedingly difficult for such politicians to achieve that end.

I wrote about this recently because I’m convinced that governments shouldn’t be overthrown for “light and transient causes” any more than presidents should be impeached for light and transient causes. This isn’t a joke. This is serious stuff.

If, in addition to meddling, Ukraine possesses evidence that the former vice president’s bragging about a “quid pro quo” was a corrupt act intended to benefit his son by extorting $1 billion in U.S. taxpayer funds, it is incumbent on Trump to ask Zelensky to investigate. Biden isn’t entitled to a “get out of jail” free card simply because he is now running for president. Hillary Clinton coveted such a card, and it should never happen again.

Vice President Biden shouldn’t get that get-out-of-jail-free card because nobody is above the law, not even former vice presidents. This video sums things up nicely:

Hunter Biden was put on the board of Burisma Holdings and paid $83,000 a month for 5 years. What’s worse is that he didn’t have any expertise in the energy industry or in the Ukraine. Then, when investigators started checking out potential corruption, Vice President Biden threatened to pull $1,000,000,000 in loan guarantees from Burisma if Viktor Shokin, the prosecutor general, wasn’t fired.

Impeachment is a political act because it involves the political branches of government. That being said, it also uses judicial principles if done properly. If articles of impeachment are passed on a straight party-line vote, Republicans should essentially throw the case out for not fitting the constitutional definition of impeachment.

Thursday night’s debate showed just how much contempt Democrat presidential candidates have for the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. Kamala Harris said that she’d issue an executive order to confiscate (my word, not hers) AR-15s and AK-47s if Congress didn’t act on banning assault weapons. I quoted from the DC v. Heller case in this post why she’d get slammed 9-0 in the Supreme Court:

Miller’s holding that the sorts of weapons protected are those “in common use at the time” finds support in the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of dangerous and unusual weapons. Pp. 54–56. 3. The handgun ban and the trigger-lock requirement (as applied to self-defense) violate the Second Amendment. The District’s total ban on handgun possession in the home amounts to a prohibition on an entire class of “arms” that Americans overwhelmingly choose for the lawful purpose of self-defense.

The Supreme Court has ruled that guns that are in common use are beyond Congress because they’re protected by the Second Amendment. Period.

Harris isn’t the only Democrat that thinks they’re above the Constitution. Robert Francis O’Rourke, the rich brat from El Paso, went on this tirade during the debate:

O’Rourke himself is just a punk who won’t be president. With that tirade, he took himself out of the running for being a serious challenger to Sen. Cornyn, too. That’s why I couldn’t care less about Robert Francis. What I’m bothered about was the applause he received from the audience at the Democrats’ debate in Houston. Those idiots are our neighbors, co-workers and friends.

This is what happens when our schools don’t emphasize civics in the classroom. Increasingly, our society thinks that they’re beyond the law and the Constitution. Chief of those that think that way is AOC. Harris apparently thinks that she can ignore the Constitution, too:

Harris responded, “I would just say, hey, Joe, instead of saying, no, we can’t, let’s say, yes, we can. And yes, we can. Because I’ll tell you something, the way that I think about this is, I’ve seen more autopsy photographs than I care to tell you. I have attended more police officer funerals than I care to tell you. I have hugged more mothers of homicide victims than I care to tell you. And the idea that we would wait for this Congress, which has just done nothing, to act, is just — it is overlooking the fact that every day in America, our babies are going to school to have drills.”

To Sen. Harris: I’ve read the Bill of Rights. It trumps the autopsy pictures that Sen. Harris has seen. It trumps the attempt to play on victims’ emotions, too.

Perhaps it’s just me but Sen. Harris sounded like she was high when she said “Hey, Joe, instead of saying ‘no, we can’t,’ let’s say ‘yes, we can.’ That laughter made her sound like she was high.

Whether Sen. Harris was high or not, she’s definitely wrong on the Constitution.

I felt sick reading John Hinderaker’s article, partially because of the violence visited upon the young man in the video but mostly because it’s just a matter of time before that sort of thing hits St. Cloud.

Forgive my pessimism. I’m usually an optimist. After watching St. Cloud deteriorate the last 5 years, it’s difficult to maintain a positive attitude. Next Wednesday, St. Cloud’s Police Chief will participate in a propagandist’s dream event to tell everyone just how wonderful St. Cloud would be if it wasn’t for those awful hate-filled Christians antagonizing those pure-as-the-driven-snow CAIR activists.

People are leaving St. Cloud. Some are moving to southern states but most are leaving for Sartell, Sauk Rapids St. Augusta and St. Joe. They’re leaving because they’re disgusted with spineless politicians, rising crime in core neighborhoods, a city council that thinks that the First Amendment is optional and a school board that thinks that sneaking a bonding referendum for a $100,000,000+ Tech HS should be voted on by only those in the ‘education community’. (That’s why the school board kept everything hush until the Times accidentally ruined the School Board’s plans.) But I digress.

John’s post is about the young man who got brutalized in Minneapolis just outside Target Field. This is one of the videos of this disgusting event:

Day after day, week after week, month after month, Democrats hint that law enforcement is the problem. That puts police officers in the impossible position of having to do a difficult job without the full support of the communities they’re protecting.

Authorities admit that violent crime is up in Minneapolis, although they surround that admission with happy talk, which won’t be believed by anyone who actually ventures into the city at night. (The story is the same in urban St. Paul. One night last week, the St. Paul police lacked the manpower to respond to three shootings that happened more or less simultaneously in different parts of the city.)

Minneapolis’s mayor is a young man who worked briefly in my law firm and is obviously not up to the task. Members of the City Council are ridiculously left-wing and totally ineffective. In both Minneapolis and St. Paul, civic authorities are convinced that policemen are the gravest threat to “communities of color,” and therefore law enforcement should be scaled back, or only grudgingly reinforced in response to events like the one you see in the video above.

Then John notes what someone reminds him of:

A reader reminds me that I should have mentioned this: “Some Minneapolis candidates say they can envision a city without police.”

Seven City Council hopefuls and two mayoral candidates say in a local voter guide that they can envision a future Minneapolis with no police. Asked, “Do you believe that we could ever have a city without police?” two mayoral candidates and two incumbents and five serious challengers running for City Council answered “yes.”

The idiots on St. Cloud’s City Council aren’t that stupid but nobody’s mistaking them for Einstein’s relatives, either.

What St. Cloud needs is its version of Rudy Giuliani. If we don’t find that person fast, I hate thinking what depths St. Cloud will descend into.

This LTE highlights how society is increasingly rejecting objective truth. This paragraph is the perfect example of undisciplined thinking:

Our disagreements about how to run government, provide health care and offer housing and a sustainable living to families are only the tip of the iceberg. We disagree about how to best take care of both immigrants and citizens. None of the ways are the “right” way. We must understand that each is “a” way and that they all work with varying degrees of success. When we factor human kindness into the equation, or love of neighbor, we have more success.

Actually, the right way to deal with immigration is multi-faceted but eminently logical. It starts with the belief that each nation has the right to determine who gets into its nation.

In fact, it’s important to realize that nations have the affirmative obligation to protect its citizens. Providing for public safety is a core function of government. Implicit in the above paragraph is that there isn’t a wrong way. That’s foolish. The wrong way is the way that the Democrats’ presidential candidates are advocating for.

During the Democrats’ first round of presidential debates in Miami, FL, every Democrat presidential candidate lifted their hand, signaling that they thought the US should decriminalize illegal immigration. That’s insanity. That’s like sending out an invitation to the world that they can live in the US if they pay a fine.

Saying that all ways “work with varying degrees of success” is foolish. Closing immigration loopholes, tightening up asylum questions and sealing our border with physical walls will shut down illegal immigration to a trickle, stop human trafficking and restrict the flow of illegal drugs to the point of crippling the drug cartels’ profits.

Hearing Nancy Pelosi say that obeying the immigration laws that Congress has passed and that various presidents have signed “isn’t who we are” is sickening. If those signed laws that were passed by this nation’s elected leaders don’t represent our nation’s values, what does? After all, those laws weren’t shoved down our throats. They required compromise, wisdom and principles.

Democracy is that great American experiment in which we each have a say because we were created as equals, no matter our lot in life. Gerrymandering and restricting access to polling places (see our neighbors in North Dakota, for example) give lie to the experiment. True democracy makes it easier to vote and works toward equal representation, not the reverse.

Before the federal government existed and immediately after the Colonists won the Revolutionary War, France recognized each of the 13 former colonies as individual nation states. Today’s Democrats advocate for the opposite of the post-Revolutionary War United States by advocating for a system of government that doesn’t take into consideration what rural America, America’s heartland and blue collar America need but caters to the needs of coastal America and elitist America.

It’s important to stipulate that we don’t have a national government. We have a federal government. Theoretically at least, that federal government is there to serve the states. It isn’t there to tell the states what to do. The best way that the federal government can serve We The People is to let us make most decisions at the local or family level.

Yes, there really is a right way. Yes, there really is a wrong way. Though the Founding Fathers were imperfect, the Constitution that they put together was as close to perfect as any document in human history.

When it comes to the Constitution, lawyers should be relatively well-informed. John Ellenbecker is a long-time attorney in the St. Cloud area. In the interest of full disclosure, Ellenbecker and I were part of the same graduating class at Cathedral High School.

Ellenbecker’s constitutional ignorance was once again on display in this LTE’s comments when he said of Councilman Brandmire “In his Dec. 1, 2018 column in the Times Brandmire stated that he favors prohibiting additional Muslim settlement in St. Cloud (he described it as “I support the idea of closing the seemingly wide-open spigot of refugees coming here until we can assimilate those who are already here”) – which is contrary to his comment here. Closing the spigot is not a statement that you support a welcoming community. Closing the spigot is a violation of the constitutional rights of those he seeks to exclude from St. Cloud. Brandmire needs to clearly and unequivocally reverse his course and denounce efforts aimed at ‘closing the seemingly wide-open spigot of refugees coming here.'”

Having talked with Councilman Brandmire, I know that he understands that the City Council has an advisory role in the process, thanks to the Refugee Act of 1980. Saying that you support something isn’t the same as saying you’d overstep your authority. It simply means that he’d agree with that policy if that’s what the Trump administration settled on.

If Ellenbecker can’t figure out the difference between supporting something and writing an ordinance prohibiting refugees from getting settled here, then he went to the wrong law school. How is supporting a policy a violation of a refugee’s constitutional rights?

As for the statement that Councilman Brandmire’s statement isn’t “a statement that you support a welcoming community”, my questioning is ‘So what’? According to this website, the term welcoming community is kinda loaded:

The Standard will outline the policies, programs, and practices that local governments need to have in place —such as supporting new American civic participation; making services accessible; and engaging all residents, including both receiving communities and new Americans.

Apparently, conformity is required. If cities don’t conform, they don’t get certified. It’s impossible to hide the fact that WelcomingAmerica.com is about top-down, cookie-cutter government.

What part of that sounds anything like wisdom? The whole idea behind local government is to individualize policies to the greatest extent possible. WelcomingAmerica.com sounds like they operate from a federal government standpoint.

I strongly suggest that everyone read Councilman Brandmire’s op-ed. He doesn’t mince words nor does he sound unreasonable. It’s possible for people to disagree with him but it’s impossible to call him unreasonable.

As for Ellenbecker, he sounds like a Democrat who’s reading from DFL talking points. Whenever a Democrat talks about the Constitution, bet that it’s because it’s focus-group approved.

The Democrats have a subtle but major problem on their hands. It isn’t getting covered by the MSM, aka Agenda Media, because covering it might require work, intelligence and thoughtfulness. The MSM is just missing 3 of those qualities.

The Democrats’ subtle but major problem is that Democrats apparently think that some people should be presumed innocent, usually partisan Democrats like Hillary, while others (think Bill Barr or President Trump) shouldn’t be presumed innocent.

Democrats and Robert Mueller think that it’s a prosecutor’s job to state whether a prospective defendant has been “exonerated.” That’s false. Prospective defendants walk into court with the presumption of innocence. That’s a principle that Democrats like Sen. Mazie Hirono, (D-HI), can’t quite grasp. In an interview with MSNBC, Sen. Hirono said that “we aren’t in a court of law. We’re in a court of credibility at this point.” What the hell does that mean?

What’s at stake is the principles of fairness and evidence. Sen. Hirono and other Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee did their best to railroad Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination. They didn’t want him on the Supreme Court. The Democrats were perfectly willing to lie about Justice Kavanaugh’s history. That’s the definition of the opposite of fair play. Here’s Sen. Hirono doubling down against the principle of the presumption of innocence:

This article lays things out beautifully:

As Attorney General William Barr testified on May 1, the job of the Justice Department, and thus the job of the special counsel, is not to “exonerate.” The job of the Justice Department is to determine whether there is “sufficient evidence to establish an obstruction” and that this “determines whether or not there was a crime.”

Mueller’s job was to make this determination. He declined to make it. But having claimed that they could not make a determination, they did not stop at laying out the facts.

I suspect that Mueller was hoping that he wouldn’t have to testify to Congress. I suspect that’s a pipe dream at this point. I can’t blame Mueller for not wanting to testify. That’d mean having to answer non-softball questions from people like Sen. Ted Cruz, Sen. Mike Lee, Sen. Lindsey Graham and Representatives like John Ratcliffe, Jim Jordan and Mark Meadows.

That’s the last thing I’d want to spend a day doing.

This is a problem for Democrats because it tells the nation that they aren’t interested in principled liberalism nor are they interested in fundamental fairness. That’s wrong. Watch how Mike Huckabee and Alan Dershowitz debated:

If the United States can’t return to that debating style ASAP, then we deserve the terrible government we’d get. I can’t put it plainer than that.

Let’s be clear about something. A number of Democrat committee chairs are constitutional illiterates. Either that or they’re exceptionally corrupt or both. It’s something I’ve spent a big chunk of time thinking about. Here’s what finished things off for me.

When House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings issued subpoenas for President Trump’s private financial records when he was a private citizen, President Trump’s attorneys filed a lawsuit to prevent the production of those records.

The legal complaint from Trump’s legal team reads “Chairman Cummings has ignored the constitutional limits on Congress’ power to investigate. Article I of the Constitution does not contain an ‘Investigations Clause’ or an ‘Oversight Clause.’ It gives Congress the power to enact certain legislation. Accordingly, investigations are legitimate only insofar as they further some legitimate legislative purpose.”

That’s true as far as it goes but I’d add that they didn’t mention a separation of powers conflict, too. Congress isn’t tasked with investigating private citizens before they were part of the government. That’s the jurisdiction of the executive branch. Specifically, the Department of Justice has the statutory authority to investigate private citizens. The investigations of private citizens is the responsibility of the FBI or the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The only people vested with the responsibility of convening grand juries are the DOJ attorneys, U.S. attorneys or a special counsel.

This won’t be a terribly difficult case to decide. The legislative branch has the constitutional authority to give advice and consent, pass legislation, provide legislative oversight and to ratify treaties.

House Democrats don’t have the authority to investigate the private activities of private citizens. That’s the job of the executive branch. Period. Mark Levin discussed another possible explanation with former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli on Sunday night’s Life, Liberty & Levin:

I don’t know if that’s what these Democrats are trying to do but I won’t rule it out. It’s pretty frightening when the People’s House is weaponized to torment private citizens. Though that precedent hasn’t been sent, Speaker Pelosi did say that subpoenas might be a way to negotiate with President Trump:

Apparently, Pelosi and other Democrats don’t think playing fair is required. That’s why they need to voted out of office in 2020. The bigger the landslide in the House and Senate, the better. It’s clear that Democrats don’t see limits on their investigative powers:

I suspect that they’ll be stopped cold by the Supreme Court. I can’t wait to hear about that ruling. What’s chilling is hearing E.J. Dionne say that going after a private citizen’s private financial records “is the right thing to do.”

Crisis: a dramatic emotional or circumstantial upheaval in a person’s life.

Saying that Democrats have too many drama queens is understatement. This afternoon, Judith Miller employed the Democrats’ favorite phrase while talking about President Trump’s declaration of a national emergency when she said this created a “constitutional crisis.” Judith Miller is a Pulitzer-prize-winning journalist so she should know the definition of the word crisis.

Honestly, Ms. Miller should know that a crisis only happens when there’s a life-or history-changing event. Even if the Supreme Court rules against President Trump’s declaration, it’s difficult to picture how their ruling changes the course of history.

My definition of a constitutional crisis is when the Supreme Court makes a ruling but the president refuses to obey the ruling. Pushing the envelope over a policy difference isn’t a constitutional crisis. That’s what I’d define as a constitutional question.

Democrats love throwing the constitutional crisis term around because it makes President Trump sound like a certifiable villain. When President Trump is re-elected, the American people will send the verdict that they’re tired of the Democrats’ drama queen antics.

PS- The Democrats’ other ‘drama queens are Mazie Hirono, Chuck Schumer, AOC and Speaker Pelosi.

Based on this article, it’s apparent that Democrat senators haven’t read Article VI, Clause 3 of the US Constitution. That clause prohibits religious tests, saying “but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.”

Sen. Hirono, (D-HI), and Sen. Harris, (D-Calif.) recently sent questions “to District Court judge nominee Brian Buescher, [challenging] his suitability for the bench because he belongs to” the Knights of Columbus, a Catholic organization:

Sens. Mazie Hirono and Kamala Harris, in written questions to District Court judge nominee Brian Buescher, challenged his suitability for the bench because he belongs to this charitable Catholic group. Hirono claimed that the Knights have taken “extreme positions” such as affirming Catholic belief in traditional marriage and even asked Buescher, “If confirmed, do you intend to end your membership with this organization to avoid any appearance of bias?” In today’s Democratic Party, the new McCarthyism asks, “Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of the Knights of Columbus?”

It isn’t difficult to make the case that Sen. Hirono hates men. This video uses Sen. Hirono’s own words to make the case that she hates men:

This isn’t the first time Democrats have used a religious test:

Last year, during confirmation hearings, Sen. Dianne Feinstein noted the devotion of Judge Amy Coney Barrett and her family to the Catholic Church and admonished that “the dogma lives loudly within you, and that’s a concern.” Sen. Feinstein’s devotion to ignoring the Constitution speaks loudly about what’s her highest priority.

Late this afternoon, Elizabeth Baklaich announced that she’s running to replace Steve Laraway representing St. Cloud’s Second Ward. Baklaich introduced herself to Ward 2 voters with this statement:

My name is Elizabeth Baklaich. I am a concerned citizen who is stepping forward to run for office because our St Cloud City Council needs real change.

Our founding fathers knew what they were doing declaring our independence and establishing our Constitutional Republic. The St Cloud City Council seems to have forgotten that our human rights come from a power higher, not from government. We The People are the government. We have a right to be heard, to be safe and, when needed, to redress a government.

Our current government has ignored attempts to redress them from the outside. I have watched as laws have been ignored and Tax Payers rights have been violated. The change did not seem possible from the outside, so much to my chagrin, I am stepping up and taking the lead so that this power run amuck does not take the next step and turn into tyranny.

I am a wife, mother and survivor. I grew up in Pennsylvania as a Quaker and graduated from a small steel town in Chester County Pa. I have lived in many places in the US, and in 2001 chose to make Minnesota my home. I have a great respect for history and do not want us to repeat it. I am not politically correct. I own my mistakes, then do my best to learn from them and not to repeat them. My work history which began at 14 includes everything from legal research, to real estate, to insurance to scrubbing toilets. There is always work for those who are willing to roll up their sleeves and do it. Currently, I sit on 1 local board and teach Red Cross & American Heart Association CPR classes for 3 different employers. I like helping others and helping others become trained to help others.

We are going to create situations for the citizens to be heard, for their views to be respected. As a beginning, I am creating several listening sessions for the people of Ward 2 to clearly be able to share their concerns without interruptions, limitations or a 3-minute timer on them. I see several opportunities to increase community engagement while making the government more efficient. The government should work for us, not dictate to us.

I look forward to being the people’s choice for Ward 2 in St Cloud.

Mr. Laraway is part of the old boys network. He’s part of the problem. He isn’t part of the solution. Ms. Baklaich wants to listen to her constituents rather than tell them what she’ll do. Ms. Baklaich’s words prove that she knows we have a Constitution limiting what government can do.

Further, it’s clear Ms. Baklaich knows that government is only possible with the consent of the governed.