Sunday, October 10, 2004

Dubyah is an idiot.

In the second debate, by way of discussing Supreme Court appointments, he demonstrated a fairly profound misunderstanding of constitutional law.

"Another example would be the Dred Scott case, which is where judges, years ago, said that the Constitution allowed slavery because of personal property rights. That's a personal opinion. That's not what the Constitution says. The Constitution of the United States says we're all -- you know, it doesn't say that. It doesn't speak to the equality of America. And so, I would pick people that would be strict constructionists."


A quick reading of Dred Scott v. Sandford reveals that it is actually a model of strict constructionalist interpretation of the Constitution. I would be willing to bet that Uncle Clarence Thomas would have ruled with the majority on that one, had he been allowed.

Basically, the Constitution didn't forbid slavery (indeed, it didn't even mention it in any way until the passage of the 13th amendment) and, so, allowed it by default. The Justices in the Scott case determined that the various states had no right to deny the property rights of citizens of another state (in this case, Mr Scott was the property in question).

Of course, I'm no lawyer.

I do wish, however, that Dubyah had finished his thought and not stopped himself. He SOOOOO wanted to say "all men are created equal", which, of course, is not in the Constitution.

Anyway, I would love to know who fed him that Dred Scott line. They really should have gone with a different case. Maybe Plessy? Nah, too close to the hearts of most Repugnicans. Perhaps he should have gone after John Marshall (I hope I'm remembering correctly) and the whole crazy notion of judicial supremacy.


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