Chris Christie’s Dangerous Attack on the U.S. Constitution

ProudProgressive 2012/02/21 15:43:40

Chris Christie’s Dangerous Attack on the U.S. Constitution
February 21, 2012
By Hrafnkell Haraldsson

Though 74 delegates were chosen by their states, only 55 of them bothered to show up at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in May of 1787. Over the next four months, these 55 men gave the United States a system of government that has lasted two-and-a-quarter centuries, making ours the oldest working constitution in the world.

No small feat.

But now we are being told that 121 men and women are insufficient to provide the single state of New Jersey with a marriage law, a rather simple matter by comparison, most people would agree.

These 55 men drafted the most momentous document in world history: United States Constitution, the governing document of the country, establishing not only the principles of government but the very apparatus of that government – legislative, judicial, and executive and the means by which they were to work in relation to one another before the Constitution was finished.

It was signed by 39 men on September 17, 1787 out of the 42 remaining. The other thirteen men had left the convention for one reason or another. Those 39 men granted us a system of government. But 121 men and women on February 18, 2012, cannot pass a bill granting marriage equality in their home state?

Governor Chris Christie tells us that the marriage equality debate in his state of New Jersey, which provided four of those 39 signers (William Livingston, David Brearley, William Paterson, Jonathan Dayton), “should not be decided by 121 people in the statehouse in Trenton.”

Think about that for a moment. Or two.

You have to wonder what Christie means by this. Does he mean that only one man (Chris Christie) should decide it? He, after all, vetoed the pro-marriage equality vote, which means his one vote trumps the vote of those 121 men. A veto, after all, is a decision. Or does he mean that 121 men and women are not enough men and women to decide (we all know how much Republicans love referendums). No matter how you shake it out, his words make no sense.

The problem is that as the Civil Rights movement proved, rights come only from legislation, not from majority votes. One of the very things the U.S. Constitution was written to prevent was the tyranny of the majority – the excesses of democracy, as they were called at the time. And Governor Christie wants to sidestep the Constitution and as Republicans did in California with Proposition 8, buy a majority vote in their favor with money from outside the state, trumping the very rights of the people he is pretending to champion.

In the end the will of the people mean nothing to Christie or to any other Republican (Santorum comes to mind) because the majority of Americans approve of marriage equality. Increasingly, the American system of government reflects this as state after state approves marriage equality laws. Chris Christie has the right to veto bills – governors and presidents all do it at one point or another. But at least show some respect for the American system of government when you do it, and don’t pretend that the legislatures designed to do what New Jersey’s just did have no right to fulfill their function or that your decision is based on a desire to do what the people want.

Read More: http://www.politicususa.com/en/chris-christies-dan...

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  • kmay 2012/02/23 14:43:21
    Spin piece, nothing more.
  • tommyg - POTL- PWCM-JLA 2012/02/21 16:46:33
    tommyg - POTL- PWCM-JLA
    "You have to wonder what Christie means by this. Does he mean that only one man (Chris Christie) should decide it?"

    Kinda like Obama decided birth control should be free and paid for by the insurance companies? Yeah, kinda like that.

    Can't have it both ways Proud.
  • ProudPr... tommyg ... 2012/02/21 17:35:49
    No, the Constitution decided that the Catholic Church has no right to impose its religious views on its employees. President Obama merely preserved, protected and defended the Constitution as he has since the day he took office.
  • tommyg ... ProudPr... 2012/02/21 17:44:31
    tommyg - POTL- PWCM-JLA
    Proud, I heard not one complaint or even one story of someone complaining about this issue. This was a non-issue...a non-story. Spin it however you want. I lost a lot of respect for our President when he pulled this sh*t.
  • Lefty tommyg ... 2012/02/21 18:14:09
    You lost respect as soon as he was elected.
  • tommyg ... Lefty 2012/02/21 18:41:15
    tommyg - POTL- PWCM-JLA
    I gave him his chance to sink or swim. In my opinion...he sank like a stone. I will say I wasn't impressed with his voting "present" in the IL legislator.
  • kmay ProudPr... 2012/02/23 14:44:11
    "Constitution 101: The Meaning and History of the Constitution”

    You may learn something!
  • Reichstolz 2012/02/21 15:55:37
    Once again you conveniently neglect the fact that the legislature has in their power to override his veto, but facts are not welcome on the propaganda train, you progressives promote.

    Regarding Prop 8, you once again leave out the facts, it was the black churches that turned out in droves to vote for Wonder Mutt, that passed Prop 8, so if you want to blame someone for the way California's proposition turned out blame Obama.

    I find it amusing you can be so blatantly hypocritical, but then again, you have always been.
  • Ira 2012/02/21 15:54:56
    Living in NY, it was easy to see what a coward Christie has proven to be. Most republicans fail on social issues; they use biblical justification for their decisions or lack of in this case. When a majority citizenry votes for a minority issue, it is inherently unfair. THIS IS WHY WE HAVE ELECTED OFFICIALS. Representatives of what is best for society. If that majority representation votes, it should be considered as representative of the very people they were elected to represent. Representative democracy.
  • elijahin24 2012/02/21 15:52:17
    This is a great article, and so true. Ballot measures have been a very effective way for the Religious Right to impose their authoritarian Levitical laws on the rest of the country. This is EXACTLY what the founders wanted to avoid. Direct democracy is politically popular, but it is REALLY bad for our country. We don't live in a democracy. We live in a republic. Chris Christie is a hypocrite and a coward. If anti-gay rights people want to stand against gay rights, that's their right. But in a state, where the process brought us a law which would allow equality, to say "no, that's not good enough", is a travesty, of which our founders would be ashamed.

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