Fat Steve's Blatherings

Monday, April 25, 2005

Senator Feingold Exposes Himself

      Ann Althouse heard Senator Russ Feingold give a talk about his devotion to the U.S. Constitution.  Sounds like not a bad talk, but notice some of the details:
      Feingold doesn't like Constitutional amendments:
      In his work on the Subcommittee on the Constitution of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Feingold said he votes against amending the Constitution. He thinks it is better to craft legislation so that it is constitutional (as in the case of campaign finance reform) or simply to reject the amendment as not important enough (as with flag burning).

      On the other hand:
      Feingold said he said he believes the cases that permit the death penalty are wrong, but that the new death penalty case (making it unconstitutional to execute a person who committed his crime as a juvenile) is an "exciting example of how the Constitution can evolve."

      Now, whatever you think of the policy, there is nothing more constitutional than the death penalty.  It's mentioned explicitly in the text of the Constitution more than once.

      This led a reader to ask Althouse:
      "What on earth can account for the view that amending the constitution is wrong but that allowing the constitution to 'evolve' under the watch of political judges (with no Constitutional basis for this evolution) is preferable."
      Her answer:
      It all just works so much better if you can get a judge to do it for you. Plus it is very hard to amend the Constitution, so if you try, you'll probably fail, and your enemies will rake you over the coals the whole time -- for wanting to change the Constitution. Acting through the courts is so much more politically palatable. And the beauty of it is that you can continue to lavish praise on yourself for your devotion to the Constitution.
      I think that explains the egregiously unconstitutional McCain-Feingold law nicely



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