When I set out to write the moral, historical and constitutional case for nullification, I knew I had a tough task ahead of me. After all, most Americans have never heard of nullification. And the constitutional and philosophical principles nullification rest on remain alien to even well-educated Americans.Details
I like that McGinnis and Rappaport frame the core question of constitutional adjudication as a choice among (a) originalism, (b) a “living constitution,” or, as they frequently call it, “judicial updating”, or (c) judicial deference to political branches.Details
At NRO, Ed Whelan comments (unfavorably) on Judge Richard Posner’s new book Reflections on Judging (Harvard University Press 2013).Details
Tenth Amendment Center national communications director Mike Maharrey went on the ClarkCast radio show last weekend to talk about the n-word – nullification.
They focused their discussion on Maharrey’s book Our Last Hope: Rediscovering the Lost Path to Liberty. In the book, Maharrey makes the moral, philosophical, and constitutional case for nullification.Details
Some people – including the former law instructor who now serves as President of the United States – believe that it is impossible to reconstruct the Constitution’s original meaning. As this book demonstrates, that view is substantially incorrect.
The Original Constitution fills a void that has existed for a long time—the need for a clear, complete, easy-to-read guide to what our Constitution really means.
Using evidence overlooked by nearly all other writers and assessing it with scrupulous objectivity, The Original Constitution tells you the truth about the Constitution. The Constitution the Founders gave us, that is, instead of the distorted version of it foisted upon us today.
In The Original Constitution you will learn:Details
After lying dormant for the better part of 150 years, nullification has been gaining momentum in recent years. My own awareness of nullification, the idea that the states have the constitutional right to block federal enforcement of unconstitutional acts, was originally almost wholly due to the work of historian Thomas Woods, who literally wrote the book on Nullification in 2010. As great as that book was, Woods’s work was preceded by six years by another author who offered the first book-length treatment of nullification in a century.
This was William Watkins’ 2004 book, Reclaiming the American Revolution. Watkins, an attorney who specializes in constitutional law, opens his book by taking the reader through the events that led to the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions of 1798, authored by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison respectively. These resolutions were a response to the Alien and Sedition Acts, a series of unconstitutional laws passed earlier in 1798.
After laying out the historical background for these laws, including the so-called Quasi-War with France, Watkins discusses some of the ways that they were used to shut down opposition to President John Adams and his Federalist party. The most notable instance of prosecution under the Acts was that of Benjamin Franklin Bache who, besides being the grandson of Benjamin Franklin, was also a journalist who used his newspaper to criticize the Federalists. Bache’s tragic story begins with his arrest for violating the Sedition Act and subsequent death from yellow fever while awaiting trial. Other stories of prosecution under the Acts, while not as tragic, are equally as troubling in their violations of the First and Tenth Amendments.Details