“WE ARE GOING TO HEAR FROM THE CONSTITUTION TODAY…”
by Sharon Rondeau
(Feb. 15, 2016) — On Monday, radio show host, attorney, author and constitutional educator KrisAnne Hall discussed the void left by the unexpected passing of U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, who passed away on Saturday at a resort in Texas.
Very soon after Scalia’s death was publicly announced, partisans in and outside of Congress began the argument over whether or not Obama should nominate a new Supreme Court justice or if the seat should remain vacant until after a new president is elected in November.
Hall began the segment by stating that “‘Liberty First‘ principles” are foremost at this time, referring to the motto on her website. “We are going to hear from James Madison today; we are going to hear from Thomas Jefferson today; and we are going to hear from the Constitution today what a Supreme Court justice should look like,” she said.
“Should we even address a Supreme Court nominee with this president?” Hall said she has heard from some as being “the big question.”
“We should follow the Constitution, because the Constitution establishes the procedure for when there is an absence of a Supreme Court justice,” Hall stated. She said that it is the president’s constitutional responsibility to make a nomination and for the Senate to evaluate the nominee for his or her commitment to uphold constitutional principles.
“We need a constitutional judge,” Hall said, rather than a “liberal” or “conservative” one stemming from political viewpoints.
“We need judges who are going to defend the Constitution of the United States, and that’s how they need to be vetted,” she said. “Do our senators know what a constitutionally-minded Supreme Court justice looks like?” she asked.
Hall stated that there exists a “tradition” in federal government that the chief executive should have all of his nominees approved, leading to an “oligarchy.”
“We need a Supreme Court justice that knows that the Constitution is a contract,” she said.
“What happens if we have a Supreme Court justice that just maintains the status quo?” she asked, stating that “domination by federal government” is the result.
Hall opined that Obama would choose a candidate based not on “constitutional proficiency,” but rather, on “race or gender” considerations or “liberal activism.”
“Then you conduct a hearing…based on the Constitution and not on political gains…You actually vet this judge and you allow the people to have the discussion of what a Supreme Court justice should sound like,” she said.
Hall went on to say that the judiciary has become separated from the “will of the people.”
“That’s why this is important…” she stated, citing four high-profile cases on the court’s docket this session, which ends in June. “What happens if there is no Scalia?” she asked, relative to those upcoming opinions.
She named each current Supreme Court justice according to his or her customary opinions and laid out the scenario should the court be split “4-4” on any of the four identified cases, noting that Elena Kagan recused herself from one of them.
One of the cases concerns Obama’s executive actions declared in November 2014 allowing millions of illegal aliens to remain in the country rather than face congressionally-mandated deportation. Another case deals with the provision of mandatory contraception under Obamacare.
At 19:40, Hall discussed some of the ramifications of a new justice failing to be nominated while Obama is still in the White House as could be interpreted politically.
Hall reminded her audience that courts “can’t write law,” contrary to what many Americans appear to believe. Citing the example of Roe v. Wade, she said that Supreme Court opinions are not “the law of the land.”
Hall opined that the U.S. is operating “under an oligarchy” because of the power given to the president and his appointees, including members of the Supreme Court. Quoting from Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton, she cited the envisioned advancing power of the federal government over that of the states.
Jefferson had predicted the “venality” of a growing “center of power” in Washington, DC.
“Do you believe you have an appointment for life?” Hall suggested the Senate ask a nominee. “Do you believe, Madam Candidate, Mister Candidate, that the decisions of the Supreme Court are superior to that of the states?” was another question Hall would like to see asked.
She offered other questions which she believes would determine whether or not a nominee understands the Constitution.
The segment is 38:27 long.