Jefferson and Madison on the Role of the Federal Courts

Today, it is commonly accepted that the U.S. Supreme Court has the sole and final say as to whether or not a federal law is constitutional (after it winds through the lower federal courts).  Recently, for example, the Court upheld the Affordable Care Act as constitutional under the auspices that the individual mandate is a tax.  This commonly accepted notion is wrong.

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Unconstitutional acts are not law

Even the “big government” guy of the founding generation – Alexander Hamilton – agreed: “There is no position which depends on clearer principles, than that every act of a delegated authority contrary to the tenor of the commission under which it is exercised, is void. No legislative act, therefore, contrary to the constitution, can be…

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