Constitution Authority??

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Thread: Constitution Authority??

  1. #16
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    The question is so wide open that the only answer possible is yes. They can legislate guns as part of interstate trade. They can legislate guns as part of foriegn imports and tariffs. There are a ton of laws the Government could enact that would not run afowl of the Constitution.

    With all of that said, they have really overstepped their authority on too many levels to count.

    ETA: The Constitution doesn't give the Federal Govenment the authority to do anything. The Constitution limits the powers of the Government. The authority comes from the people through their elected representitives.
    It is surely true that you can lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink. Nor can you make them grateful for your efforts.

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  3. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by atctimmy View Post
    ETA: The Constitution doesn't give the Federal Govenment the authority to do anything. The Constitution limits the powers of the Government. The authority comes from the people through their elected representitives.
    If that is so, what is the point of the enumerated powers clause?
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  4. #18
    VIP Member Array MitchellCT's Avatar
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    Yes.

    Article 1, Section 8. The interstate commerce clause, and the necessary and proper clause.

    (I don't agree with it, but that doesn't matter, as it's been decided by courts previously.)
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  5. #19
    Senior Member Array stanislaskasava's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MitchellCT View Post
    Yes.

    Article 1, Section 8. The interstate commerce clause, and the necessary and proper clause.

    (I don't agree with it, but that doesn't matter, as it's been decided by courts previously.)
    If the courts [purposely] interpret the Constitution in error, does that change the meaning of the Constitution?

    If the court decides that 7 x 4 = 24, must we nod our heads and learn the new math?
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  6. #20
    VIP Member Array MitchellCT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stanislaskasava View Post
    If the courts [purposely] interpret the Constitution in error, does that change the meaning of the Constitution?

    If the court decides that 7 x 4 = 24, must we nod our heads and learn the new math?
    Have you read any constitutional law cases? I'm curious, because you seem to be thinking the courts pull this stuff out of places where the sun doesn't shine.

    I have neither the time, nor the inclination, nor the motivation to debate constitutional law with people who are as uninformed as they are sure of their own interpretation of the constitution.

    The entire basis of this thread was a simple question, does congress have the authority to do something - the answer is found in the text of Article 1, Sec 8 of the United States Constitution. Article 3 establishes the judiciary which interprets the laws passed according to article 1's grant of authority to the legislature.

    That answer is "Yes". For the most part.

    The limits of that power are the subject of a large body of caselaw. The answer is, for the most part, well settled but parts may still be in flux.
    I suggest you read the relevant cases and articles in law review publications (both are accessable for free in your local library...) dealing with this subject before making more of a fool of yourself talking about things you do not at the present time understand.

    What gets me pissed off about this is that people have access to the information, but instead of finding it, they go into a circle of ignorance talking to people with as imperfect understanding of a subject as they have, then try to debate the issue as if they are aware of all the facts & background information necessary to have an informed discussion...then get snippy when someone else comes in with information that doesn't fit into their little world view.

    Source material & scholarly articles written by people with a clue on both sides of the debate are available free - find them. Read them.

    Till then, this discussion is a waste of my time, and you are on my ignore list till you PM me with a list of the law journal articles you have got from your local library on the Interstate Commerce Clauses, and Congress's authority to regulate local affairs via the use of the Commerce Clause and the Taxing & Spending power.

    (Hint - Obama Care is being chalanged on those grounds...so it's not just a gun thing)
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  7. #21
    Senior Member Array stanislaskasava's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MitchellCT View Post
    Have you read any constitutional law cases? I'm curious, because you seem to be thinking the courts pull this stuff out of places where the sun doesn't shine.

    I have neither the time, nor the inclination, nor the motivation to debate constitutional law with people who are as uninformed as they are sure of their own interpretation of the constitution.

    The entire basis of this thread was a simple question, does congress have the authority to do something - the answer is found in the text of Article 1, Sec 8 of the United States Constitution. Article 3 establishes the judiciary which interprets the laws passed according to article 1's grant of authority to the legislature.

    That answer is "Yes". For the most part.

    The limits of that power are the subject of a large body of caselaw. The answer is, for the most part, well settled but parts may still be in flux.
    I suggest you read the relevant cases and articles in law review publications (both are accessable for free in your local library...) dealing with this subject before making more of a fool of yourself talking about things you do not at the present time understand.

    What gets me pissed off about this is that people have access to the information, but instead of finding it, they go into a circle of ignorance talking to people with as imperfect understanding of a subject as they have, then try to debate the issue as if they are aware of all the facts & background information necessary to have an informed discussion...then get snippy when someone else comes in with information that doesn't fit into their little world view.

    Source material & scholarly articles written by people with a clue on both sides of the debate are available free - find them. Read them.

    Till then, this discussion is a waste of my time, and you are on my ignore list till you PM me with a list of the law journal articles you have got from your local library on the Interstate Commerce Clauses, and Congress's authority to regulate local affairs via the use of the Commerce Clause and the Taxing & Spending power.

    (Hint - Obama Care is being chalanged on those grounds...so it's not just a gun thing)
    I can tell by your huffing and puffing that I've hit the nail squarely on the head. I don't blame you for putting me on your ignore list. People usually give up when they know they're beat. (j/k buddy)

    You say:

    Article 1, Section 8. The interstate commerce clause, and the necessary and proper clause.

    (I don't agree with it, but that doesn't matter, as it's been decided by courts previously.)
    If you "don't agree with it" this implies that either you or the court has interpreted the Constitution in error. Assuming for a moment that your interpretation is correct, the question arises, once again, "If the courts [purposely] interpret the Constitution in error, does that change the meaning of the Constitution?"

    The question was first intended literally (I desired your legal opinion), but I'll let it stand, rhetorically, this time around.

  8. #22
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    Disclaimer: I am not speaking for MitchellCT in any way. The following is my interpretation of what he was saying in Stanislaskasava's above post.

    I believe MitchellCT was making a comment on the way the SCOTUS has interpreted the commerce clause. Since 1804, the commerce clause has been spindled, folded and mutilated to allow the feds to do more than the founders intended. Arguably, John Marshall was a founder, but he was also a staunch federalist - in the old sense of that word. After taking over for John Jay, another federalist, but not an activist, Marshall began the expansion of the commerce clause and the role of the courts usurping Congress' legislative duties. While Marshall started it, he was hardly the last justice to go down this road.

    I don't think, as Stanislaskasava appears to think, that MitchellCT was saying he does not agree with Article 1, Section 8 entirely.

    FWIW - below is the text of Article 1, Section 8. Note it starts with Powers of Congress & The Congress shall have power to ...

    Section 8 - Powers of Congress

    The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

    To borrow money on the credit of the United States;

    To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;

    To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;

    To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;

    To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States;

    To establish Post Offices and Post Roads;

    To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;

    To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court;

    To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offenses against the Law of Nations;

    To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

    To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

    To provide and maintain a Navy;

    To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

    To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

    To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

    To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings; And

    To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.
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  9. #23
    New Member Array Gold Rush's Avatar
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    Yes, the Government would love to control the guns in this contry. We as citizen of this Great Country have the "Right to Bear Arms" and expect our
    right to keep us safe from the bad in this country. We have gun change in the Golden State that will take away our right to go hunting because our
    State Representative want all ammunition that are jacketed outlawed as armor piercing bullets. They want all long guns registered like hand guns
    by the State Attornery General kept on file so they can pick them up anytime and no hand guns carried in public places. If we do not turn over our
    ammunition it is a felon and we could be jailed. ALOHA! Lopaka!!

  10. #24
    Senior Member Array stanislaskasava's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ksholder View Post
    Disclaimer: I am not speaking for MitchellCT in any way. The following is my interpretation of what he was saying in Stanislaskasava's above post.

    I believe MitchellCT was making a comment on the way the SCOTUS has interpreted the commerce clause.
    I also believe that MitchellCT was 'making a comment on the way the SCOTUS has interpreted the commerce clause.' My words were very plain, so I assume you are just trying to muddy the waters.

    Quote Originally Posted by ksholder View Post
    Since 1804, the commerce clause has been spindled, folded and mutilated to allow the feds to do more than the founders intended.
    Once again, we are in agreement.

    Quote Originally Posted by ksholder View Post
    ... I don't think, as Stanislaskasava appears to think, that MitchellCT was saying he does not agree with Article 1, Section 8 entirely.
    I think he was saying he does not agree with the courts interpretation of Article 1, Section 8. At this point, we are back to my previous post, yet again:

    "If the courts [purposely] interpret the Constitution in error, does that change the meaning of the Constitution?"

    How hard is it to answer this simple question?

  11. #25
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    I'm sorry this got so heated. The OP was open ended for a reason.

    The General Welfare clause in Article I § 8 is an introduction to the enumerated powers that follow and not itself a grant of power. Any law passed by Congress that is outside Article 1 § 8 is Unconstitutional, and thus Null and Void.James Madison addresses this precise issue in Federalist no. 41 (last 4 paras): Madison points out that the first paragraph of Art. 1, §8 employs “general terms” which are “immediately” followed by the “enumeration of particular powers”.The General Welfare Clause does NOT grant the government any additional powers. Those powers are restricted to the enumerated powers already stated.

    Article 1 § 8, Cl 3 the Commerce Clause.
    In Federalist no. 22 (4th para) and Federalist no. 42 (11th &12th paras), Alexander Hamilton & James Madison explain the purpose of the “interstate commerce” clause: It is to prohibit the states from imposing tolls and tariffs on articles of import and export—merchandise.

    Firearms are NOT addressed by Federalist because the Constitution does not allow the Federal government to address firearms. Federalist cannot address something in the Constitution that doesn't exist.

    The Constitution would NEVER have been ratified had it not been for the Federalists Papers. They are a plain language explanation of the INTENTS of the framers. Intents that WE THE PEOPLE and our congress critters seem to have forgotten.


    Lastly, case law contrary to the Constitution is in itself Unconstitutional regardless of which court hands down a decision/opinion. The vast majority of Heller and McDonald are just two examples. The powers of the SC are clearly spelled out, and any court which goes beyond those boundaries is legislating from the bench.

    Chris

  12. #26
    Senior Member Array stanislaskasava's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Varmiter View Post
    The General Welfare clause in Article I § 8 is an introduction to the enumerated powers that follow and not itself a grant of power. Any law passed by Congress that is outside Article 1 § 8 is Unconstitutional, and thus Null and Void.
    I suppose this is the basis for the question in your original post.

    Quote Originally Posted by Varmiter View Post
    James Madison addresses this precise issue in Federalist no. 41 (last 4 paras): Madison points out that the first paragraph of Art. 1, §8 employs “general terms” which are “immediately” followed by the “enumeration of particular powers”.The General Welfare Clause does NOT grant the government any additional powers. Those powers are restricted to the enumerated powers already stated.

    Article 1 § 8, Cl 3 the Commerce Clause.
    In Federalist no. 22 (4th para) and Federalist no. 42 (11th &12th paras), Alexander Hamilton & James Madison explain the purpose of the “interstate commerce” clause: It is to prohibit the states from imposing tolls and tariffs on articles of import and export—merchandise.

    Firearms are NOT addressed by Federalist because the Constitution does not allow the Federal government to address firearms. Federalist cannot address something in the Constitution that doesn't exist.

    The Constitution would NEVER have been ratified had it not been for the Federalists Papers. They are a plain language explanation of the INTENTS of the framers. Intents that WE THE PEOPLE and our congress critters seem to have forgotten.
    Thanks for the explanation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Varmiter View Post
    Lastly, case law contrary to the Constitution is in itself Unconstitutional regardless of which court hands down a decision/opinion. The vast majority of Heller and McDonald are just two examples. The powers of the SC are clearly spelled out, and any court which goes beyond those boundaries is legislating from the bench.
    These are two very important points to remember.

  13. #27
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    Simple answer...NO!
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  14. #28
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    The simple answer is yes. Sorry Retsupt99. Courts have held that any right is subject to limitations. For example, you cannot yell fire in a crowded theater, you can't lie and defame someone, etc, regardless of the First Amendment. The questions then is, at what point can they regulate the right and still be within the Constitution?
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  15. #29
    Senior Member Array stanislaskasava's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ExactlyMyPoint View Post
    The simple answer is yes. Sorry Retsupt99. Courts have held that any right is subject to limitations. For example, you cannot yell fire in a crowded theater, you can't lie and defame someone, etc, regardless of the First Amendment. The questions then is, at what point can they regulate the right and still be within the Constitution?
    Oh? Are there Federal laws against yelling "Fire!" in theaters? Are there Federal laws against lying or defaming? I'll have to go back and read Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution again.

  16. #30
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    A lot of good dialogue has been posted. For me, however, I worry that no matter what the Constitution does or does not say the head guy does just what he wants. He seems to sign and appoint without heistation. No one challenges so he continues. I'm very glad that I joined this forum. Thanks to many members, I've learned a lot. I've purchased three firearms and ammo (not enough yet) for all three. We are stocking food, water, medicine, and other daily necessities.

    The "folks" in DC are causing way too much disent. They have no regard for the American public. I wonder how much of their antics is intentional.

    I will repeat what is saw on a flag in on one of GunBlast's videos "Come and take it"

    My two cents!
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