THE FEDERAL COURTS & THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
By Dr. Ron Paul
Many of my colleagues, in voting on issues regarding federalism and states' rights, base their votes on whether or not they agree with the particular state policy at issue. However, under America's federal system, as prescribed by the United States Constitution and as guaranteed and protected by the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution , the member-states of the American federal union have the constitutional authority to legislate in ways that most members of Congress, and even the majority of the citizens of other states, disapprove. Consistently upholding state autonomy does not mean approving of all actions taken by state governments; it simply means acknowledging that the constitutional limits on the power of the national government (including the federal courts) require Congress to respect the wishes of the states, even when the states act unwisely. I would like to remind my colleagues that an unwise state law, by definition, only affects the people of one state. Therefore, it does far less damage than a national law that affects all Americans.
While I will support this bill, even if the language removing the United States Supreme Court’s jurisdiction over cases regarding the Pledge of Allegiance is eliminated, I am troubled that some of my colleagues question whether Congress has the authority to limit Supreme Court jurisdiction in this case. Both the clear language of the United States Constitution  and a long line of legal precedents make it clear that Congress has the authority to limit the Supreme Court’s jurisdiction. The Framers of the Constitution intended for Congress to use the power to limit federal court jurisdiction as a check, or restraint, on all federal judges -- including Supreme Court justices -- who, after all, have lifetime tenure and are thus unaccountable to the people.
Ironically, the author of the Pledge of Allegiance might disagree with our commitment to preserving the prerogatives of state and local governments. Francis Bellamy, the author of the Pledge, was a self-described Socialist who wished to replace the Founders’ constitutional federal republic with a highly centralized unitary state under which all governmental authority resided in the national government. Bellamy wrote the Pledge as part of his efforts to ensue that children put their allegiance to the central government before their allegiance to their families, local communities, state governments, and even their Creator! In fact, the atheist Bellamy did not include the words “under God” in his original version of the Pledge. That phrase was added to the Pledge in the 1950s.
Today, most Americans who support the Pledge reject Bellamy’s vision and view the Pledge as a reaffirmation of their loyalty to the Framers’ vision of a constitutional federal republic, a system of representative government with limited, divided and balanced powers, a system based on recognition of the fact that the fundamental rights and liberties of the individual person come from the Creator, not from the sovereign state, which has the moral and legal obligation to protect the God-given, natural rights of the individual member of society. In order to help preserve the Framers’ system of checks and balances and a national government of limited powers, I am pleased to support HR 2028, the Pledge Protection Act. Again, I urge my colleagues to do the same.
U.S. Constitutional Law & Political Philosophy
The foregoing statement by Congressman Ron Paul was presented, on September 25, 2004, as a speech delivered from the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Dr. Ron Paul is a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives, elected from and representing the Fourteenth
Congressional District of Texas. Congressman Paul is considered to be one of America's leading spokesmen for constitutional
government, the rule of law, liberty under law, the private enterprise system,, free market economics, sound monetary policy, and
fiscal restraint on the part of the U.S. national government.
Africa: Black Africa *
Africa: North Africa *
American Government 1
LINKS TO PARTICULAR ISSUES & SUBJECT MATTER CATEGORIES
TREATED IN THE PROGRESSIVE CONSERVATIVE, U.S.A.:
American Government 2 * American Government 3 * American Government 4
American Government 5 * American Politics * Anglosphere * Arabs
Arms Control & WMD * Aztlan Separatists * Big Government
Black Africa * Bureaucracy * Canada * China * Civil Liberties * Communism
Congress, U.S. * Conservative Groups * Conservative vs. Liberal
Constitutional Law Counterterrorism * Criminal Justice * Disloyalty * Economy
Education * Elections, U.S. * Eminent Domain * Energy & Environment
English-Speaking World * Ethnicity & Race * Europe * Europe: Jews
Family Values * Far East * Fiscal Policy, U.S. * Foreign Aid, U.S. * France
Hispanic Separatism * Hispanic Treason * Human Health * Immigration
Infrastructure, U.S. * Intelligence, U.S. * Iran * Iraq * Islamic North Africa
Islamic Threat * Islamism * Israeli vs. Arabs * Jews & Anti-Semitism
Jihad & Jihadism * Jihad Manifesto I * Jihad Manifesto II * Judges, U.S. Federal
Judicial Appointments * Judiciary, American * Latin America * Latino Separatism
Latino Treason * Lebanon * Leftists/Liberals * Legal Issues
Local Government, U.S. * Marriage & Family * Media Political Bias
Middle East: Arabs * Middle East: Iran * Middle East: Iraq * Middle East: Israel
Middle East: Lebanon * Middle East: Syria * Middle East: Tunisia
Middle East: Turkey * Militant Islam * Military Defense * Military Justice
Military Weaponry * Modern Welfare State * Morality & Decency
National Identity * National Security * Natural Resources * News Media Bias
North Africa * Patriot Act, USA * Patriotism * Political Culture * Political Ideologies
Political Parties * Political Philosophy * Politics, American * Presidency, U.S.
Private Property * Property Rights * Public Assistance * Radical Islam
Religion & America * Rogue States & WMD * Russia * Science & Ethics
Sedition & Treason * Senate, U.S. * Social Welfare Policy * South Africa
State Government, U.S. * Subsaharan Africa * Subversion * Syria * Terrorism 1
Terrorism 2 * Treason & Sedition * Tunisia * Turkey * Ukraine
UnAmerican Activity * UN & Its Agencies * USA Patriot Act * U.S. Foreign Aid
U.S. Infrastructure * U.S. Intelligence * U.S. Senate * War & Peace
Welfare Policy * WMD & Arms Control
Africa: Black Africa *
Africa: North Africa *
American Government 1
POLITICAL EDUCATION, CONSERVATIVE ANALYSIS
POLITICS, SOCIETY, & THE SOVEREIGN STATE
Website of Dr. Almon Leroy Way, Jr.
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
An Online Journal of Political Commentary & Analysis
Dr. Almon Leroy Way, Jr., Editor