“God is the source of law and liberty. If there is no law, there is no liberty.” — Herbert Titus, constitutional lawyer
Are you tired of judicial attacks on the Ten Commandments?
Tired of hearing liberal judges cite a foreign country’s law or a World Court ruling as a basis for turning American society upside down?
Help is on the way.
U. S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-Alabama) has introduced a bill to rein in the courts: the Constitution Restoration Act (CRA). If enacted into law, the CRA would:
- Re-establish the right of public officials to affirm that God is “the sovereign source of law, liberty, or government.”
- Impeach judges who base their decisions on anything but the U. S. Constitution and American law — including the laws of foreign countries, international conventions, European Court rulings, etc.
“On the whole, it’s a great bill,” said Glen Lavy, a constitutional lawyer with the Alliance Defense Fund, Arizona. “I hope it receives a lot of organizational support from the Christian movement.”
How Does It Work?
When Senator Shelby unveiled his bill at a recent press conference, he had himself introduced by Judge Roy Moore — the former Alabama Chief Justice who was stripped of his position for not obeying a federal court order to remove a Ten Commandments monument from his courthouse.
“You simply cannot divest God from our country,” Shelby said. “Our country has no foundation without a basic recognition that God invests us at birth with basic individual rights.”
The bill rests legally on Article III, Section 2, of the Constitution. This section allows Congress to make “exceptions” as to what kind of cases the federal courts might hear.
The CRA would remove from the courts’ jurisdiction all cases involving the public acknowledgement of God as the source of American law and government. Had it been in place last year, the federal court could not have ruled on Judge Moore’s right to display the Ten Commandments, and he would still be in office.
“This bill is critically important to address the growing trend in our federal courts to deny the rights of our states and their citizens to acknowledge God openly and freely,” said Virginia Davis, the senator’s press secretary.
Congress has never before had to invoke Article III, Section 2, against judicial abuse of power, Lavy said. “It’s never gotten to the point before where courts have so exceeded their jurisdiction.”
Herbert Titus, a constitutional lawyer representing Judge Moore, said, “It’s time to stop the courts from abusing power.” He said, “They don’t even read the Constitution anymore. They just exercise raw power.”
Is It Constitutional?
Looking ahead, Glen Lavy thought a constitutional challenge might be mounted to overturn the bill if it becomes law.
“The Left might argue that this does not exclude Congress from violating the First Amendment,” he said. “If, say, you wanted to sue Congress for violating the establishment clause [forbidding Congress to establish a state religion], where would you go if the court was excepted from hearing it? That’s how the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) might argue it.”
“The bill is solidly constitutional,” Herbert Titus said. “There’s no reason to declare it otherwise. Why would anyone try to sue Congress for violating the establishment clause in the first place? Congress has never tried to establish a state religion.”
Titus has a unique perspective. Until 1975, he worked for the ACLU.
“I got saved in 1975,” he said. “God completely changed my life.”
As to the CRA, “all Congress has done,” he said, “is acknowledge God. It’s not an establishment of religion.
“Congress passes resolutions all the time, thanking God for this or that, and the courts have no business telling Congress how they can acknowledge God.”
According to an information packet provided by Senator Shelby’s office,
- “The authority of Congress under Article III is specifically enumerated and cannot be questioned by another branch of government.”
- “The actions of state and federal officials from the adoption and implementation of the First Amendment illustrate that acknowledgement of God was never intended to be prohibited.”
“I wish the bill also addressed school prayer and marriage,” Glen Lavy said. “But I’m sure there’ll be a lot of grassroots support for this. So many conservative groups came into being as a reaction to judicial power-grabbing — Roe v. Wade, for instance [establishing ‘a constitutional right to abortion’].”
American Law for American Courts
The CRA proposes to impeach judges who base their decisions on foreign law.
“That’s another thing that never came up before,” Virginia Davis said. “Unfortunately, some courts have used international law and treaties as precedents for their judicial activism.”
“That part of the bill is great,” Lavy said. “I love it. And it’s long overdue.”
Last year the U. S. Supreme Court cited Canadian law and European Court rulings as the basis for striking down anti-sodomy laws in 15 states, in Lawrence v. Texas. Earlier this year, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts did the same, in ordering the state legislature to enact law granting full marriage rights to homosexuals.
If the CRA becomes law, Senator Shelby said, judges who follow those examples will be impeached.
“What are these judges trying to do — globalize law in the United States?” Titus said. “Are we supposed to change our laws every time a few judges come back from a seminar in Europe? This law will put a stop to that.”
Persons wishing to express their support for the Constitution Restoration Act can contact Senator Shelby by phone (202-224-5744: Washington, DC office) or email [email protected].
Companion legislation in the House of Representatives has been sponsored by Rep. Robert Aderholt (R-Alabama).
- Lee Duigon
Lee is the author of the Bell Mountain Series of novels and a contributing editor for our Faith for All of Life magazine. Lee provides commentary on cultural trends and relevant issues to Christians, along with providing cogent book and media reviews.
Lee has his own blog at www.leeduigon.com.