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Judge Stevens: 5 Words Can Fix 2nd Amendment

Retired Supreme Court justice proposes a remedy

(Newser) - Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens argues in the Washington Post that the debate over the 2nd Amendment and the right to bear arms can be settled with the addition of five words. Here they are, inserted into the amendment in bold:
  • “A well regulated Militia, being necessary
... More »

GOP Backs Strict Abortion Stance: No Exceptions

Democrats calling it the 'Akin plank'

(Newser) - The Republican Party platform is set to support a Constitutional amendment banning abortion, with no exceptions for rape or incest cases. Republican leaders ratified the party stance at a meeting today ahead of next week's convention, where the measure is all but guaranteed for final approval, CNN reports. "... More »

Medical Marijuana Backers Sue Federal Government

Crackdown in California violates 10th Amendment, they say

(Newser) - Here's one new thing the backers of legal pot have in common with the Tea Party: love of the 10th Amendment. A group that backs medical marijuana has sued the US attorney general, arguing that the recent crackdown by the feds in California infringes on states' rights outlined in... More »

Atheists Sue Over 9/11 Cross

Group wants cross removed from Ground Zero memorial

(Newser) - The famous World Trade Center cross doesn't belong at the National September 11 Memorial and Museum, according to American Atheists. The group has filed suit to yank the planned cross, a 17-foot T-joint found upright in the rubble of 9/11, arguing that it violates the Constitution by promoting Christianity... More »

High Schooler to Bachmann: Let's Debate History

Teen calls her grasp of civics 'grossly distorted'

(Newser) - Concerned that Michele Bachmann’s take on US civics is “factually incorrect, inaccurately applied or grossly distorted,” a New Jersey teen has challenged the Minnesota representative to a debate on US history and the Constitution, the Minnesota Independent reports. “The frequent inability you have shown to accurately... More »

Congress Must Stop Ignoring Article 1, Section 8

If Congress had debated recent wars, we'd have saved trillions: Walter Rodgers

(Newser) - Congressional Republicans have been hard at work cutting a few million in funding from NPR; but if they’d just played by the rules a decade ago, they could have saved at least $4 trillion, writes Walter Rodgers in the Christian Science Monitor . That's one estimate of how much the... More »

Fight Brewing Over 'Anchor Baby' Citizenship

States plan to introduce different birth certificates for children of illegals

(Newser) - The biggest immigration battle of 2011 is likely to focus on how exactly an American is defined. A coalition of lawmakers from Arizona and about a dozen other states is fighting to deny citizenship to children born to illegal immigrants . They want to take the "anchor babies" issue all... More »

Scalia: Constitution Doesn't Prohibit Sex Discrimination

Supreme Court justice raises ire with 14th Amendment interpretation

(Newser) - The 14th Amendment's equal protection clause doesn't prohibit discrimination against women and gays, according to Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. "Nobody ever thought that's what it meant. Nobody ever voted for that" when the amendment was proposed in 1868, the Reagan appointee tells California Lawyer. "If the current... More »

In GOP-Led House, the Constitution Will Be God

Every single bill must cite passage authorizing legislation

(Newser) - When Republicans take over the House next week, they'll christen the new session with a dramatic reading ... of the Constitution. Apparently, the 4,543-word document has never—in 221 years—been read aloud in the chamber. But the GOP is determined to center the 112th Congress around the document when... More »

Let Americans Keep Electing Their Senators

Essay: Campaign to repeal 17th Amendment is misguided

(Newser) - The 17th Amendment allows Americans to choose their senators directly, rather than have them picked by state legislatures—and some Tea Partiers and a particular jurist named Antonin Scalia want it gone. (He says states' rights have been on the decline since it became law in 1913.) Bad idea,... More »

O'Donnell: Constitution Separates Church, State?

Delaware Tea Partier doesn't know the First Amendment

(Newser) - Christine O'Donnell apparently doesn't subscribe to the view that the Constitution guarantees the separation of church and state, CBS News reports. "Where in the Constitution is (that)?" she asked Senate candidate Chris Coons during a debate over whether schools should be allowed to teach intelligent design. It prompted laughs... More »

How to Kill the Filibuster With 51 Votes

By using, or almost using, the 'constitutional option'

(Newser) - The 59 or so senators growing weary of the GOP's current penchant for filibustering are increasingly looking to an option that would allow them to revamp the chamber's filibuster rules with only 51 votes—which Democrats have—rather than 67, which they most certainly don't. The "constitutional option" would... More »

Soldiers, Cops Form Backbone of Growing Militia Movement

'Oath Keepers' prepare for Obama martial law

(Newser) - A growing militia movement convinced that President Obama will soon find an excuse to impose martial law on the US is finding scores of recruits from within the country’s law-enforcement and military community, Justine Sharrock writes in an investigative piece for Mother Jones . The “Oath Keepers” group has... More »

Health Reform's Biggest Hurdle: The Constitution

The government can't simply require people to buy something

(Newser) - Democrats giddy about being on the verge of health care reform ought to look out for a "rock dead ahead," writes George Will. That "rock" is the US Constitution. The idea of forcing people to buy health insurance just doesn't jibe with the principle of individual liberty,... More »

Fla. AG Probing 'Unconstitutional' Health Bill

McCollum says legislation interferes with Floridians' freedom

(Newser) - Florida's Bill McCollum has become the 11th and latest state attorney general to announce an investigation into the constitutionality of health care reform. McCollum, a Republican running for governor next year, says he has grave concerns about the legislation's requirement for all Americans to buy health insurance or pay a... More »

Dems Don't Care About Constitution

Since when can the US require people to buy something?

(Newser) - Everyone's putting out best-of lists these days, so in that spirit Bill Pascoe nominates Senate Roll Call Vote Number 392 as the "most significant vote of the decade." No, it's not the big one that passed health care reform. It came just before that, on an amendment questioning... More »

Logical, Ethical Lapses Beset Washington Post

Op-ed page woes spread to editorial on Nobel Peace Prize

(Newser) - The next-to-last straw was the Washington Post editorial saying Neda Agha Soltan should have won the Nobel Peace Prize, which isn't awarded posthumously. The last straw was today's op-ed raising—but not bothering to answer—the question of whether President Obama can even accept the honor without violating the Constitution.... More »

Pentagon Grades Reporters' War Coverage

Documents shed light on Defense efforts to shape news from Afghanistan

(Newser) - With a view to trying to influence coverage of the war in Afghanistan, the Pentagon is grading journalists’ work, the Stars and Stripes reports. The military newspaper says it has documents that counter official denials of the practice, with coverage rated as “positive,” “neutral,” or “... More »

Hannity's Grade on Reading Declaration, Constitution: F

Host forgets that founding fathers saw government as essential to liberty

(Newser) - In honor of July 4th, Sean Hannity has been encouraging his audience to buy pocket copies of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution. But he might want to read them a little more closely himself, notes Henry Claw for the New Majority. “We do believe that all men are... More »

Obama Will Try to Rig a Third Term: Limbaugh

Barack, like Honduran prez, just wants to 'rule' for as long as possible

(Newser) - Rush Limbaugh says President Obama condemned the military coup against Honduran President Manuel Zelaya in order to “lay a foundation for not being a hypocrite when he tries to serve beyond 2016,” RealClearPolitics reports. The army moved against Zelaya when he tried to eliminate term limits—“basically... More »

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