Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Corona Constitution Class: Elections (Amendments 20, 24, 26) and the other final amendments

Tuesday Night at 6:00 pm at AllStar/CARSTAR Collision (522 Railroad St., Corona, CA) 

Constitution Class Handout
Instructor: Douglas V. Gibbs
 
 
 
Lesson 20
 
Prohibition, Women's Voting Rights, Election Rules

Prohibition

Amendment 18 was ratified January 16, 1919, bringing the prohibition of alcohol to America. The amendment was repealed by Amendment 21, December 5, 1933.
 
Christian churches worked to bring about prohibition as far back as the early 1800s, largely through the campaigning by women and young adults who had been adversely affected by husbands and fathers who were heavy alcohol consumers. Alcohol was considered to be one of the most prevalent social problems in America. The concerns over the dangers of alcohol brought about the Temperance Movement. The American Temperance Society was founded in 1826, with the specific goal of outlawing alcohol in the United States.
 
Local organizations that encouraged abstinence from alcohol existed as early as 1808. It was not until 1826 that a nationwide temperance society was created. As the American Temperance Society gained steam, national and international temperance societies sprang up. Organizations like the Washington Temperance Society did not consider temperance to be a religious issue, while other groups felt compelled by God to proclaim temperance. Considering the involvement in the movement by a diverse menu of denominations, no one religion was able to claim to have been the originator of temperance ideals.
 
The most effective weapon of temperance was to advocate total abstinence from alcohol through personal pledges. The societies gave out pledge cards or medals with various types of pledges written on them. Not all of the pledges, however, demanded total abstinence, as indicated by the following pledge:
 
"We agree to abstain from all intoxicating liquors except for medicinal purposes and religious ordinances."
 
Concerned that being too strict may discourage many from joining their society, some organizations gave people the option to choose the extent of their pledge. One common practice was to have those who joined a society to sign a book indicating their commitment. If the person was willing to commit to total abstinence, they would place a capital "T" by their name. The "T" stood for Total or "Total Abstinence". Hence came the term "Tee Totaler" as one who has committed himself to total abstinence.
 
Through the use of pressure-politics the goal of nationwide prohibition was achieved during World War I with the ratification of the Eighteenth Amendment in January of 1919.
 
Congress, in response to the new amendment, passed the Volstead Act on October 28, 1919, to enforce the law. Most large cities refused to enforce the legislation. As the federal government went after bootleggers, it became quickly apparent that the understaffed agencies were fighting a losing battle. Meanwhile, though there was a slight decline in alcohol consumption around the nation, organized crime increased in the larger cities. Alcohol became a high demand cash crop that the criminal element could not resist.
 
As Prohibition became increasingly unpopular, and the element of organized crime had reached its height, the perceived need for tax revenue during the Great Depression also encouraged a repeal movement. The hope for tax revenue from the legal sale of alcohol, and the need to weaken organized crime, led to the 21st Amendment, which repealed the amendment that had brought Prohibition to America. The repeal returned the legalities of alcohol to the States. Though Prohibition was over nationwide, some counties remained dry counties, forbidding the sale of alcoholic beverages.
 
In our current society there are calls for the legalization of Marijuana, and other drugs. Existing federal drug laws enforce a prohibition of drugs. There is a movement in some parts of government pushing for the legalization of certain drugs, like marijuana. If at the federal level a number of politicians decided that the legalization of drugs is good for the nation, we could very well see such legislation pass through Congress. By studying the U.S. Constitution, and taking a lesson from the 18th Amendment, it is apparent that the federal government does not have the authority to ban, or legalize, drugs in America without receiving such an authority through the Amendment Process (as we saw with the 18th Amendment in regards to Alcohol). The regulation of drugs is a State issue, as per the Tenth Amendment. This means that all federal drug laws are unconstitutional, and laws in California legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes, and in the States of Washington and Colorado for recreational use, are completely constitutional.
 
Terms:
Dry Counties - Counties in the United States whose government forbids the sale of alcoholic beverages within the county.
 
Great Depression - A severe worldwide economic depression in the decade preceding World War II.
 
Organized Crime - Transnational, national, or local groupings of highly centralized enterprises run by criminals for the purpose of engaging in illegal activity, most commonly for monetary profit.
 
Prohibition - Period in United States history during which the manufacture and sale of alcohol was prohibited. Drinking alcohol itself was never illegal, and there were always exceptions for medicinal and religious uses.
Temperance Movement - A social movement urging the reduced use of alcoholic beverages during the 19th and early 20th centuries.
 
Volstead Act - Officially The National Prohibition Act; the law that was the enabling legislation for the Eighteenth Amendment which established prohibition in the United States.
 
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. Why were women a major factor in the temperance movement?
 
2. What were some of the factors that contributed to the growing popularity of The Temperance Movement?
 
3. What challenges did The Temperance Movement encounter, and how did they adjust (i.e. through the style of pledges, exceptions to abstinence, etc.)
 
4. What was the reaction of many local governments to the Volstead Act?
 
5. What happened to the presence of organized crime when Prohibition was enacted? Why?
 
6. What were the reasons for repealing Prohibition?
 
7. What did Prohibition say about individualism and personal responsibility from the point of view of the federal government?
 
8. In what form does Prohibition continue to exist in the United States even today?
 
9. What lesson regarding the legalization of other drugs does the 18th Amendment teach us?
 
 
Resources:
Joseph Andrews, A Guide for Learning and Teaching The Declaration of
Independence and The U.S. Constitution - Learning from the Original Texts Using Classical Learning Methods of the Founders; San Marcos: The Center for Teaching the Constitution (2010)
 
Kobler, John, Ardent Spirits The Rise and Fall of Prohibition, New
York: G.P. Putnam's Sons (1973)
 
The Temperance Movement, US History.com;
http://www.u-s-history.com/pages/h1054.html
 
Steven Mintz, Moralists & Modernizers: America's Pre-Civil War
Reformers; Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press (1995)
 
Women's Voting Rights
The 19th Amendment established uniform voting rights for women nationwide. It was ratified on August 18, 1920.
 
Women, despite popular opinion, did vote in elections prior to the ratification of the 19th Amendment. In 1869, women in the newly created territory of Wyoming became the first women in the United States to win the right to vote. Colorado gave voting rights to women in 1892, and both Utah and Idaho gave women the right to vote in 1896.
 
The Constitution gives the States the right to determine their own rules for elections. The women's suffrage movement worked to bring about an amendment that would give women voting rights nationwide. The amendment was first proposed in 1878, and it took forty-one years before it was submitted to the States for ratification. It took about a year to receive enough votes for ratification.
 
Susan B. Anthony, already known for her crusade for the abolition of slavery, and the prohibition of alcohol, added women's suffrage to her plate. By 1878 she was able to induce a Senator from California to introduce a resolution in Congress calling for an amendment to the Constitution which would give women throughout the United States the right to vote.
 
The drive for an amendment that would grant uniform voting rights for women was nothing new. Aaron Burr, the Vice President during Thomas Jefferson's presidency, was a fervent believer in women's rights, and took personal charge of his daughter's course of study, insisting she learn Greek, Latin, and French, along with literature, philosophy and sciences. His proposals for the uniform voting rights for women, however, never gained traction.
 
John Adams, the second President of the United States, also supported expanding women's freedoms. As a great admirer of his wife, Abigail, he often went to her for advice. In 1776, as the Founders put into full gear their drive for American independence, Abigail offered in a letter, "I long to hear that you have declared an independency. And, by the way, in the new code of laws which I suppose it will be necessary for you to make, I desire you would remember the ladies and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of the husbands. Remember, all men would be tyrants if they could. If particular care and attention is not paid to the ladies, we are determined to foment a rebellion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which we have no voice or representation."
 
A challenge to the 19th Amendment (Leser v. Garnett, 1922) claimed that the amendment was unconstitutionally adopted, and that the rules for elections were implicitly delegated to the individual States because of the need to preserve State Sovereignty. However, the very fact that the change in voting rules was through amendment made the argument against the 19th Amendment a moot point.
 
Once the 19th Amendment was ratified, with this new power, women were able to attempt to elect those who shared their beliefs, hoping that other measures that would push forward the fight for women's rights would also emerge.
 
After the 19th Amendment passed, the percentage of women in the workforce increased to about 25%. Though some discrimination continued, and women rarely held decision-making positions, it was definitely a step in the right direction for the purpose of encouraging the rights of women.
 
During World War II, women were needed in all areas since many of the men went overseas to fight. The percentage of women in the workforce increased to 36%. The boom for women was short-lived, however. When the war ended, and the soldiers returned home, two-million women were fired within fifteen months after the end of the war to make room for the men.
 
Despite such setbacks, by the 1980s, the percentage of women in the workforce exceeded 50%. However, the percentage of women voting has not equaled the original push shortly after the ratification of the 19th Amendment.
 
Advocates for family values, though supportive of equal opportunity, often view these advancements as promotion for the break-up of the family unit. With mothers participating in the workforce, advent of women's rights has also given rise to the emergence of latch-key kids.
 
The greatest right for women is choice, which includes the choice not to pursue the numerous opportunities available for the purpose of following a more traditional role, should they desire to make such a choice. Women in today's society have the choice to pursue a career, be a stay-at-home mom and wife, or attempt to juggle both. For the purpose of protecting the family unit, and the traditional nature of the American society, wife and mother remains the more popular choice.
 
Terms:
Women's Suffrage - The right of women to vote and to run for office. The expression is also used for the economic and political reform movement aimed at extending these rights to women without any restrictions or qualifications such as property ownership, payment of tax, or marital status.
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. Were women allowed to vote in national elections before the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment?
 
2. How did the abolition movement and temperance movement lead some to also support women's suffrage?
 
3. On what grounds was the Nineteenth Amendment Challenged?
 
4. How has the drive for the rights of women changed to an opposite extreme?
 
5. How has the Women's Rights Movement affected the concept of the traditional family unit?
 
Resources:
Aaron Burr Biography, Essortment; http://www.essortment.com/aaron-
burr-biography-20550.html
 
Abigail Adams urges husband to "remember the ladies", History.com;
http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/abigail-adams-urges-husband-to-remember-the-ladies
 
Andrew M. Allison, K. DeLynn Cook, M. Richard Maxfield, and W.
Cleon Skousen, The Real Thomas Jefferson; New York: National Center for Constitutional Studies (2009)
 
David McCullough, John Adams; New York: Simon and Schuster (2001)
 
W. Cleon Skousen, The Role of Women in Healing America, Latter Day
Conservative and The Constitution magazine, November 1985; http://www.latterdayconservative.com/articles/the-role-of-women-in-healing-america/
 
Election Rules
Ratified in 1933, the 20th Amendment establishes the current rules regarding the beginning and end of the terms of elected federal offices.
 
The amendment moved the beginning of the Presidential, Vice Presidential and Congressional terms from March 4. Congress, under the new rules established by the 20th Amendment, convenes on the third day of January, reducing the amount of time a lame duck Congress would be in session. A lame duck Congress, no longer fearful of the effect their decisions may have on re-election, may be more apt to support otherwise unpopular legislation during a lame duck session.
 
The 20th Amendment moved the terms of the President and Vice President to begin on the 20th day of January.
 
Section 2 of the 20th Amendment begins, "The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year." The phrase is consistent with the language used in Article I, Section 4, though one wonders if the delegates debating the 20th Amendment viewed meeting one day a year as overburdensome as did the Framers of the Constitution, or if they considered themselves to be professional politicians who must be constantly legislating, as does today's legislators.
 
The 20th Amendment's Section 3 addresses vacancies to the presidency before the new President has the opportunity to take office. The clause assigns the presidency to the Vice President in the case of the death of the President, if the President dies before he can take office. Assigning the presidency to the Vice President was in line with Article II, Section 1, Clause 6, and the 12th Amendment assigning to the Vice President the Office of the President should the President die after he took office. In the case it turns out the President does not qualify for the office, this article grants to Congress the authority to declare who shall act as President. "Failing to qualify for office" refers to an occasion that the Electoral College fails to resolve who will be the President or Vice President. A key point of this provision, and a critical protection against an outgoing faction attempting to retain some semblance of power, in the case that the candidates fail to qualify for office, is that the decision still devolves to Congress, but to the newly elected Congress, as opposed to the outgoing one. As established in Article II, Section 1, the decision for President would continue to rest upon the House of Representatives, and the choice of Vice President would continue to be the choice of the United States Senate.
 
Section 4 of the 20th Amendment addresses succession, giving Congress the authority to establish a line of succession, in the case of death of the President, or of the Vice President. The more astute student may recall that today's constitutional protocols calls upon the President to appoint a new Vice President, should that seat be vacated, but that provision did not become law until the ratification of the 25th Amendment in 1967.
 
The final two sections of the 20th Amendment address when the amendment would take effect should it be ratified, and a time limit of the proposal should the States not ratify it in a timely fashion. Section 5 states that the first two sections of the amendment, the parts of the amendment that alters the date the terms of President, Vice President, and members of Congress shall begin, "shall take effect on the 15th day of October following the ratification of this article." If ratification reached completion during an election year, that would put the new amendment into effect a couple weeks before the next election. The amendment was ratified January 23, 1933, not in time for Franklin Delano Roosevelt's victory in the 1932 Election. FDR had to wait until March of 1933 to take office.
 
In Section 6 of the 20th Amendment, for the first time in American History, a limitation was placed upon a proposed amendment, requiring that the amendment be ratified within seven years from the date of its submission. The same stipulation would be added at the end of the 21st and 22nd amendments, as well as a number of proposals that failed to be ratified within the allotted time period (like the Equal Rights Amendment). The 27th Amendment, ratified in 1992, reveals that without a limitation, proposed amendments remain in place and can stay on the active list indefinitely. The 27th Amendment was originally proposed as a part of the original Bill of Rights, submitted September 25, 1789.
 
 
Terms:
 
Lame Duck Congress - A lame duck session of Congress in the United States occurs whenever one Congress meets after its successor is elected, but before the successor's term begins.
 
Line of Succession - The order in which individuals are expected to succeed one another in some official position.
 
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. Why did the framers of the Twentieth Amendment see a need to move forward the dates of Presidential and Congressional Terms?
 
2. In what way can Lame Duck Sessions be dangerous?
 
3. Why do you think the Amendment changed the duty of electing the President, should the Electoral College fail to do so, to the newly elected Congress from the outgoing one?
 
 
Resources:
 
Joseph Andrews, A Guide for Learning and Teaching The Declaration of
Independence and The U.S. Constitution - Learning from the Original Texts Using Classical Learning Methods of the Founders; San Marcos: The Center for Teaching the Constitution (2010)
 
United States Senate, Lame Duck Session Definition:
http://www.senate.gov/reference/glossary_term/lame_duck_session.htm
 
 
Copyright 2015 Douglas V. Gibbs
=============================================

Constitution Class Handout
Instructor: Douglas V. Gibbs

 
 
 
Lesson 21
Final Amendments
 
 
Amendment 22: Presidential Term Limit
The 22nd Amendment was passed in 1951. It was designed to ensure no president could seek a third term. Though the Constitution did not limit the number of terms a president could serve prior to this amendment, many consider the fact that George Washington chose not to seek a third term as evidence the Founding Fathers recognized two terms should be the expected standard.
 
George Washington's popularity would have easily enabled him to be President for the rest of his life, and many even tried to encourage him to be king. However, Washington saw himself as no different than everyone else, and recognized the presidency as a privilege to serve. He felt that more than two terms opened the opportunity for abuse of power by an Executive, which would hinge on the idea of a monarchy.
 
Following George Washington, James Madison and James Monroe also adhered to the two-term principle. No Presidents afterward sought a third term, with the exceptions of Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt. No President achieved a third term until FDR.
 
Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1940 became the only President to be elected to a third term. World War II has often been cited as the reason. The public was not fond of the idea of a change in Commander in Chief during such a crucial event in history. In 1944, while World War II continued to rage, Roosevelt won a fourth term. He died before he could complete it.
 
The 22nd Amendment was proposed and ratified during the Truman presidency.
 
The failure of the Founding Fathers to establish a term limit on the President in the early articles of the United States Constitution aligns with a prevailing opinion the Framers held that term limits were the responsibility of the voter. Their belief hinged on a reliance on the people and the Electoral College, and that electorally a third term would be prevented, unless a third term was absolutely necessary.
 
Under the 22nd Amendment, the only President who would have been eligible to serve more than two terms would be Lyndon B. Johnson. LBJ was the Vice President of the United States at the time of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, and after serving the remainder of JFK's term, Johnson had only been President for fourteen months. The 22nd Amendment provides that "No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of the President more than once."
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. Why do you think the Founding Fathers believed two terms were adequate for the President?
 
2. What is the cited reason for Franklin Delano Roosevelt's continued re-election as President?
 
3. How could an unlimited allowance of terms for President be dangerous?
 
Resources:
Andrew M. Allison, Jay A. Perry, and W. Cleon Skousen, The Real
George Washington; New York: National Center for Constitutional Studies (2010)
 
Catherine Drinker Bowen, Miracle at Philadelphia: The Story of the Constitutional Convention, May to September 1787; Boston: Atlantic
Monthly Press (1966)
 
Donald Porter Geddes (ed.), Franklin Delano Roosevelt - A Memorial;
New York: Pitman Publishing Corporation (1945)
 
James Srodes, On Dupont Circle: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and
the Progressives Who Shaped Our World; Berkeley: CounterPoint Press (2012)
 
James Thomas Flexner, Washington: The Indispensible Man; Boston:
Back Bay Books (1969)
 
John Morton Blum, The Progressive Presidents: Theodore Roosevelt,
Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Lyndon B. Johnson; New York: W.W. Norton & Co. (1982)
 
Willard Sterne Randall, George Washington: A Life; New York: Henry
Hold & Co. (1997)
 
Amendment 23: Washington, D.C., Receives Electoral Votes
The rallying cry during the American Revolution, as we have been taught, was "No taxation without representation." Yet, despite that famous call for revolution, after the United States became a nation, there were those who were taxed without representation in the United States Government. The most famous case was Washington, D.C. The movement for representation for Washington, D.C., led to the proposal, and ratification, of the 23rd Amendment.
 
Washington, D.C., is a ten mile by ten mile section of land donated by Maryland and Virginia to serve as the seat of government. The land was easy for those two States to let go of because it was undesirable. While it is popular to say that Washington, D.C., sits on swampland, it is actually a tidal plain, land that was a mix of thickly wooded slopes, bluffs and hills, crop land, and several major waterways. The location was chosen by George Washington because of its central location between the northern and southern States as a compromise between Alexander Hamilton and northern States who wanted the new federal government to assume Revolutionary War debts, and Thomas Jefferson and southern States who wanted the capital placed in a location friendly to slave-holding agricultural interests.
 
The District was not supposed to be a city in the sense that we see it today. The District of Columbia was not supposed to have a population, for the creation of the district was for the sole purpose of being the seat of the United States Government. The Congress was given full power over the functioning of the city, and the inhabitants were supposed to only be the temporary visitors of government officials, or employees. The Founding Fathers envisioned Washington, D.C., to be the seat of the federal government, and a vibrant commercial center.
 
As time passed, Washington, D.C., attracted residents, eager to partake in the opportunities offered in the way of government jobs. The incoming population largely consisted of Free Blacks prior to the beginning of the American Civil War, and after the abolition of slavery in the District in 1850. After the War Between the States, the growth of Washington, D.C.'s population exploded.
 
John Adams, the second President of the United States, did not like Washington, D.C. He viewed it as hardly being a city at all, and nothing more than a clump of dirty buildings, arranged around "unpaved, muddy cesspools of winter, waiting for summer to transform them into mosquito-infested swamps."
 
As the population of Washington, D.C., grew during the twentieth century, it became glaringly apparent to the residents that their taxation did not accompany representation. At one point, "Taxation without representation" became such a rallying cry that Washington, D.C., license plates even held the phrase.
 
After the cries for representation reached a crescendo, the Twenty-Third Amendment was proposed and ratified, allowing the citizens in Washington, D.C., to vote for Electors for President and Vice President. The amendment was ratified in 1961.
 
Since Washington, D.C., is not a State, the District is still unable to send voting Representatives or Senators to Congress. However, Washington, D.C., does have delegates in Congress that act as observers.
 
The amendment restricts the district to the number of Electors of the least populous state, irrespective of its own population. That number is currently three.
 
Terms:
 
Seat of Government - The location of the government for a political entity. The seat of government is usually located in the capital.
 
Commercial Center - A central location of commercial activity; an environment for commerce, or business activity.
 
War Between the States - The Civil War was fought from 1861 to 1865 after Seven Southern slave States seceded from the United States, forming the Confederate States of America. The "Confederacy" grew to include eleven States. The war was fought between the States that did not declare secession, known as the "Union" or the "North", and the Confederate States. The war found its origin in the concept of State's Rights, but became largely regarding the issue of slavery after President Abraham Lincoln delivered the Emancipation Proclamation. Over 600,000 Union and Confederate soldiers died, and much of the South's infrastructure was destroyed. After the War, Amendments 13, 14, and 15 were proposed and ratified to abolish slavery in the United States, and to begin the process of protecting the civil rights of the freed slaves.
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. Why was the location of Washington DC chosen to be at a central position between the northern and southern States?
 
2. Why was Washington DC only supposed to be the seat of government?
 
3. What was the encouragement for people to take up residency in Washington DC?
 
4. How did the Twenty-Third Amendment satisfy the demand by the districts residents that they be afforded representation?
 
5. How is Washington DC's representation limited?
 
Resources:
Joseph Andrews, A Guide for Learning and Teaching The Declaration of
Independence and The U.S. Constitution - Learning from the Original Texts Using Classical Learning Methods of the Founders; San Marcos: The Center for Teaching the Constitution (2010)
 
Larry Schweikart and Michael Allen, A Patriot's History of the United
States; New York: Sentinel (2004)
 
Smithsonian, Washington, D.C., History and Heritage, (2007)
http://www.smithsonianmag.com/travel/destination-hunter/north-america/united-states/east/washington-dc/washingtondc-history-heritage.html
 
 
Amendment 24: Poll Taxes and Open Primaries
The 24th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution ratified in 1964 made it unconstitutional for a State to use payment of taxes as a requirement to vote in national elections. Few blacks could vote in States using poll taxes as a requirement to vote because they had little money. The poll tax to vote in these states was $1.50. After the ratification of the 24th Amendment a number of districts continued the practice of requiring a poll tax in order to vote. A woman named Evelyn T. Butts decided to take the poll tax issue to court. In October 1965, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear Evelyn T. Butts' appeal. In 1966 the Supreme Court of the United States declared poll taxes unconstitutional in accordance with the 24th Amendment.
 
A poll tax is a uniformed tax levied on every adult in the community, called a capitation tax by the Founding Fathers. Poll taxes have their roots in ancient tax systems and have been criticized as an unfair burden on the poor. Historically, in the U.S., poll taxes were enacted in the South as a prerequisite for voting, disfranchising many African-Americans and poor whites.
 
One argument regarding the article claims the spirit of the 24th Amendment also disallows closed primaries by leaving out of the process independent voters. As a result, a number of States have been passing laws enabling their States to make their election primaries open to all voters. In an open primary you can vote for anyone you want regardless of party affiliation during the primary election. Some proponents of open primaries contend closed primaries are unconstitutional - a violation of the 24th Amendment.
 
General discontent with the two-party system has emerged in American society. A party system, however, is a natural result of human nature. Every issue is divided by those who support the issue, and those that oppose it. As human beings, we tend to gravitate toward those who think like ourselves (birds of a feather flock together), and parties ultimately form out of that natural tendency to organize. Once the groups form, they become organizations, appoint leadership positions, and a political party is born. Political parties are the natural result, fueled by our own human nature, of this kind of political organization.
 
In a party system such as ours, to allow voters to cross party-lines in the primaries can be dangerous because it opens up the potential for unethical voting techniques that are designed to injure the other party. Open primaries allow members of opposing parties to vote in their opponent's primary in the hopes of affecting the outcome, and putting the weaker candidate on the ballot so that their own party has a better chance to win. If both parties of a two party system is doing such, the result will always be the two weakest candidates facing off against each other. Open primaries nullify the whole point of the primary elections, and often result in the best candidates not being elected.
 
Not all States have primaries, and the rules for choosing candidates for a particular party varies from State to State - as it should. Some States have caucuses, which are meetings of the members of a legislative body who are members of a particular political party, to select candidates. The choosing of the delegates varies from State to State.
 
States are given the authority to make their own election rules, and maintain the elections in their State, according to Article I, Section 4 of the United States Constitution, and reinforced by Article II. This is why the Florida-Chad controversy in 2000 should have never resulted in the federal courts, or even the State courts, getting involved. According to the Constitution, the decision on what to do regarding the controversy in Florida in 2000 should have remained with the State Legislature.
 
Some supporters of open primaries contend that closed primaries are in violation of the 24th Amendment because limiting who can vote in a primary by party membership is a poll tax as per implied law.
 
By strict definition, a poll tax is a tax, which would be a monetary amount expected as a prerequisite for voting. Closed primaries do not impose a monetary tax, and therefore are not in violation of the 24th Amendment, based on the language of the amendment. One may suggest the 24th Amendment implies that no action can be taken to close any election to any person - but primaries are simply party oriented. People who couldn't vote in the primary would have been able to by joining a political party, and regardless of the ability to vote in the primaries, will be able to vote in the general election, and therefore are not being declined the opportunity to participate in the electoral process.
Terms:
Capitation - Head tax; a direct tax on each person.
 
Caucuses - A meeting of the members of a legislative body who are members of a particular political party, to select candidates or decide policy.
 
Closed Primary - A primary election in which only party members may select candidates for a general election.
 
Implied Law - Legal concept serving as a legal substitute for authorities expressly granted by the United States Constitution; an agreement created by actions of the parties involved, but it is not written or spoken, because they are assumed to be logical extensions or implications of the other powers delegated in the Constitution.
 
Open Primary - A primary election in which voters, regardless of party may select candidates from any party for a general election.
 
Poll Tax - A tax levied on people rather than on property, often as a requirement for voting.
 
Primary Election - An election in which party members or voters select candidates for a general election.
 
Tax - A compulsory monetary contribution to the revenue of an organized political community, levied by the government of that political entity.
 
Two-Party System - A form of political system where two major political parties dominate voting in nearly all elections, at every level; a political system consisting chiefly of two major parties, more or less equal in strength.
 
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. How did poll taxes disallow some people from being able to vote?
 
2. What is the difference between open primaries, and closed primaries?
 
3. Why is the existence of a two-party system inevitable in a political system like ours?
 
4. Who prescribes the times and manner of elections?
 
5. How was the "hanging chad" controversy mishandled?
 
6. What are the advantages and disadvantages of open primaries? Closed primaries?
 
 
Resources:
 
Congressional and Presidential Primaries: Open, Closed, Semi-Closed,
and "Top Two", Fair Vote: http://www.fairvote.org/congressional-and-presidential-primaries-open-closed-semi-closed-and-top-two#.T01VzPGPWHM
Joseph Andrews, A Guide for Learning and Teaching The Declaration of
Independence and The U.S. Constitution - Learning from the Original Texts Using Classical Learning Methods of the Founders; San Marcos: The Center for Teaching the Constitution (2010)
Tom Spencer, American-style primaries would breathe life into
European elections (2004): http://www.europeanvoice.com/article/imported/american-style-primaries-would-breathe-life-into-european-elections/49725.aspx
Ware, Alan. The American Direct Primary: Party Institutionalization and
Transformation in the North (2002), the invention of primaries around 1900: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=105149213
 
 
 
Amendment 25: Presidential Disability and Succession
The 25th Amendment, Section 1, reads, "In case of the removal of the President from office or of his death or resignation, the Vice President shall become President."
 
Section 1 of the 25th Amendment is clear, concise, and to the point. After nearly two centuries of questions regarding if the Vice President actually became President in the case of the removal, death or resignation of the President, or was to merely act as President if such an instance would arise, the 25th Amendment sought to clarify without question the confusion that haunted Article II, Section 1, Clause 6, and the 12th Amendment.
 
When President William Henry Harrison became the first U.S. President to die in office in 1841, Representative John Williams had previously suggested that the Vice President should become Acting President upon the death of the President. Vice President John Tyler concurred, asserting that he would need to succeed to the office of President, as opposed to only obtaining its powers and duties. Though Tyler took the oath of President (precedent for full succession was established, becoming known as the "Tyler Precedent"), nothing was done to amend the Constitution regarding the procedure.
 
When President Wilson suffered a stroke in 1919, no one officially assumed the Presidential powers and duties, and the office of President essentially remained unmanned during the remainder of Wilson's second term.
 
It was clear that a set of guidelines needed to be established.
 
In 1963, a proposal enabling Congress to enact legislation establishing a line of succession by Senator Kenneth Keating of New York based upon a recommendation by the American Bar Association in 1960 surfaced, but it never gained enough support.
 
On January 6, 1965, Senator Birch Bayh proposed in the Senate, and Representative Emanuel Celler proposed in the House of Representatives, what would become the 25th Amendment. Their proposal provided a way to not only fill a vacancy in the Office of the President by the Vice President, but also how to fill the Office of the Vice President before the next presidential election.
 
The line of succession the 25th Amendment establishes is as follows:
 
If the President is removed from office, dies, or resigns, the Vice President immediately becomes President. Prior to the 25th Amendment there was no provision for Vice Presidential vacancies. Under Section Two of the 25th Amendment the President nominates a successor who becomes Vice President if confirmed by a majority vote of both Houses of Congress, which occurred when President Richard Nixon appointed Gerald Ford to be his Vice President, after Spiro Agnew resigned as Vice President of the United States.
 
In Section 3 of the amendment, if the President provides a written declaration to the President Pro Tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives that "he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, such powers and duties shall be discharged by the Vice President as Acting President."
 
Section 4, which has never been invoked, enables the Vice President, together with a majority of either the leading officers of the Executive Department, or of "such other body as Congress may by law provide", to declare the President disabled by submitting a written declaration to the President Pro Tempore and the Speaker of the House of Representatives. If the President is unable to discharge his duties as indicated, the Vice President would become Acting President.
 
If the President's incapacitation prevents him from discharging the duties of his office and he himself does not provide a written declaration, the President may resume exercising the Presidential duties by sending a written declaration to the President Pro Tempore and the Speaker of the House. If the Vice President and the officers of the Cabinet believe the President's condition is preventing him from discharging the duties of President, they may within four days of the President's declaration submit another declaration that the President is incapacitated. If not in session, the Congress must, in this instance, assemble within 48 hours. Within 21 days of assembling or of receiving the second declaration by the Vice President and the Cabinet, a two-thirds vote of each House of Congress is required to affirm the President as unfit. If such actions are satisfied the Vice President would continue to be Acting President. However, if the Congress votes in favor of the President, or if the Congress makes no decision within the 21 days allotted, then the President would resume discharging all of the powers and duties of his office.
Questions for Discussion:
1. Why do you think there was no line of succession clearly defined prior to the 25th Amendment?
2. Why do you believe nobody took on presidential powers after President Wilson's stroke in 1919?
3. How does a President's incapacitation affect the overall functioning of government?
4. Would a President's incapacitation influence government functioning differently in a time of war?
Resources:
Joseph Andrews, A Guide for Learning and Teaching The Declaration of
Independence and The U.S. Constitution - Learning from the Original Texts Using Classical Learning Methods of the Founders; San Marcos: The Center for Teaching the Constitution (2010)
 
Understanding the 25th Amendment, Law.com,
http://constitution.laws.com/american-history/constitution/constitutional-amendments/25th-amendment
 
United States Constitution and Citizenship Day: 25th Amendment,
http://www.usconstitutionday.us/p/25th-amendment.html
 
Amendment 26: Voting Age
The 26th Amendment establishes the voting age at the age of 18, rather than 21 as it was previously. The amendment was proposed in 1971, in an attempt to respond to student activism against the Vietnam War. Originally, President Nixon had signed a law making the voting age 18, but a number of States challenged the law, and under pressure the amendment was proposed and ratified.
 
The slogan, "Old enough to fight, old enough to vote," which surfaced as far back as World War II, had finally become a worn-out enough slogan that the majority began to support it. Arguments of various viewpoints regarding the wisdom of this amendment continue to this day, but one thing is clear, the original argument of "Old enough to fight, old enough to vote," was a ruse.
 
The Democrat Party was in trouble, and desperate for votes. President Nixon was wildly popular. The 1972 election was coming, and the Democrats needed to find a way to gain more votes, and to gain them fast.
 
The college-aged population was protesting against the war. The younger generation, molded by left-leaning public school teachers, and leftist college professors, were ripe for the picking, but most of them were too young to vote. The Democrats knew that if the protesting students could vote, they would vote for the Democrat candidate for president, and give the Democrats a fighting chance to gain seats in Congress. The push for the 26th Amendment, though in part about "old enough to fight, old enough to vote," was in reality an attempt to gain more votes for the Democrats. However, despite the ratification of the amendment in time for the election allowing people as low as the age of eighteen to vote, Richard Nixon still won the election in 1972 by a landslide.
 
Questions for Discussion:
1. How has the inclusion of voters over 18 and under 21 influenced politics?
2. Was the "old enough to fight, old enough to vote" campaign a new campaign?
3. Did he political strategy being the 26th Amendment succeed?
4. Why do you suppose the Democrats targeted the vote of the younger generation?
Resources:
Joseph Andrews, A Guide for Learning and Teaching The Declaration of
Independence and The U.S. Constitution - Learning from the Original Texts Using Classical Learning Methods of the Founders; San Marcos: The Center for Teaching the Constitution (2010)
 
Larry Schweikart and Michael Allen, A Patriot's History of the United
States; New York: Sentinel (2004)
 
Old Enough to Fight, Old Enough to Vote, Nixon Foundation,
http://blog.nixonfoundation.org/2014/06/old-enough-fight-old-enough-vote/
 
Repeal the 26th Amendment! by Anne Coulter, Townhall,
http://townhall.com/columnists/anncoulter/2010/11/10/repeal_the_26th_amendment%21
 
Youth Vote: Dems' Secret Weapon 40 Years in the Making? by Carl M.
Cannon, Real Clear Politics, http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/03/25/youth_vote_dems_delayed_time_release_capsule.html
 
 
Amendment 27: Congressional Salaries
The 27th Amendment prohibits any law that increases or decreases the salary of members of the Congress from taking effect until the start of the next set of terms of office for Representatives. Ratified in 1992, the proposal remained in waiting for 203 years after its initial submission in 1789.
 
The reason for ratification was anger over a Congressional pay raise. Wyoming became the last State to ratify the amendment. Four States (California, Rhode Island, Hawaii, and Washington) ratified the amendment after the required number of States was met.
 
A battle over whether or not cost of living increases are affected by this amendment continues to this day. Currently, cost of living increases take effect immediately, without a vote.
 
Questions for Discussion:
 
1. How does the 27th Amendment protect against corruption?
 
2. Why do you think it took so long to ratify the amendment?
 
3. Is Congress voting itself raises still a concern among voters?
 
Resources:
 
Amendment XXVII: Congressional Compensation, United States
History, http://www.u-s-history.com/pages/h924.html
 
Joseph Andrews, A Guide for Learning and Teaching The Declaration of
Independence and The U.S. Constitution - Learning from the Original Texts Using Classical Learning Methods of the Founders; San Marcos: The Center for Teaching the Constitution (2010)
 
Members of Congress Haven't Had a Raise in Years, by Jesse Rifkin,
USA Today, http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/08/15/congress-pay-salaries/2660545/
 
Notes on the 27th Amendment, Constitution of the United States
"Charters of Freedom", http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_amendment_27.html
 
Understanding the 27th Amendment, Laws.com,
http://constitution.laws.com/american-history/constitution/constitutional-amendments/27th-amendment
 
 
 
Copyright 2015 Douglas V. Gibbs

Constitution Study TV: Free Will and Liberty

By Douglas V. Gibbs
Author, Speaker, Instructor, Radio Host




-- Political Pistachio Conservative News and Commentary

Monday, June 17, 2019

Thousands of Illegal Aliens Infected With Contagious Diseases Detained At the US Border

By Capt Joseph R. John, June 17, 2019 Op Ed # 438

At one time mumps, chicken pox, and measles were eradicated in the United States.  Now with hundreds of thousands of Illegal Aliens flooding across the wide open southern border, from every country in the world, those infectious diseases have broken out across the US. 

US Immigration and Customs Enforcement have placed 5,200 immigrants, who are infected with mumps, chicken pox, measles, and other infectious diseases, into quarantine in 39 immigrant detention centers nationwide.  The number of quarantined detainees has jumped dramatically from earlier this year; ICE Health Services reported that on March 7th, there were 2,287 detainees in quarantine for "exposure to contagious diseases".

Acting DHS Secretary Kevin McAleenan urged lawmakers to provide the US Border Patrol and Customs and Border Protection with additional funding to assist operations, calling the crisis "unlike anything our country has ever faced." McAleenan told lawmakers this past week that the increasing number of Illegal Aliens has hurt the morale of border officials and exposed them to sicknesses. "Their morale is impacted. They're tired. A lot of them have gotten sick. They've been exposed to flu, chicken pox, measles, mumps --all kinds of challenges in terms of the medical care," McAleenan said. "They're spending time overnight in hospitals instead of patrolling the border."

With no proof to back up unsubstantiated allegations, the left of center liberal media establishment has been trying to blame the new scourge of measles, chicken pox, mumps, and other infectious diseases spreading throughout the United States, on parents.  False media reports stated, parents have suddenly decided to stop inoculating their children to protect them from infectious diseases.

It is a well known fact that many Illegal Aliens have never been inoculated to protect themselves from contagious diseases.   The entering Illegal Aliens infected with contagious disease, who were not quarantined, is the reason why infectious diseases are spreading in the interior of the United States.  American parents are not responsible for the spread of infectious diseases that irresponsible media outlets keep reporting on.     

The US Border Patrol reported that in May 2019, 144,000 Illegal Aliens were interdicted at the wide open southern border.  The US Border Patrol only interdicts 1/3 of the Illegal Aliens crossing the wide open southern border, so in May 2019, 288,000 undetected Illegal Aliens entered the United States, and a percentage of them have been infected with contagious diseases.  

Last week over one hundred Illegal Alien family members and single adults from the Ebola-stricken Democratic Republic of Congo, illegally crossed into the southern border towns of Eagle Pass and Del Rio seeking asylum.  They were not quarantined, instead, they were dumped on the streets of San Antonio, as daily, thousands of Illegal Aliens from all over the world are being dumped on city streets of  many different communities across the United States. 

The Washington Examiner reported that roughly 300 Congolese and Angola citizens who arrived in San Antonio, after they crossed the wide open southern border, quickly departed from San Antonio for unknown destinations throughout the nation.  Christina Higgs, the Catholic Charities Spokesperson, said Africans are spending several months in transit in Brazil, then they head north to enter the US.   Catholic Charities supports the entry of Illegal Aliens for Africa, because they receive federal payments to resettle those Illegal Aliens.

Congress continues to deny that there is a public health and illegal immigration humanity crisis at the wide open southern border.  The dangers posed to the public health of America citizens (especially to public school students), due to infectious diseases being spread by entering Illegal Aliens, has been covered up by the irresponsible left of center liberal media establishment.  
Congress continues to refuse to pass legislation to fund the expansion of detention facilities, the purchase of more beds for infected Illegal Aliens with contagious diseases, or to erect secure barriers to stop hundreds of thousands of Illegal Aliens from entering the United States.  Those refusals have prevented the ability of Customs and Border Protection from screening hundreds of thousands of Illegal Aliens for contagious diseases, and that has also been covered up by the irresponsible left of center liberal media establishment.
Liberal Judges continue to impose injunctions against the Trump administration, the US Border Patrol, and the Customs and Border Protection’s actions to stop the flow of hundreds of thousands of Illegal Aliens from entering the US.  Appeals filed to override those injunctions are winding their way thru the appellant court system, and may take years to mitigate those injunctions.
Epidemics of infectious diseases that normally sweep across Central America are now sweeping across Mexico because of the numerous caravans streaming north across Mexico to the southern border of the US.  Mexican Health Care professionals have been warning their population about the spread of the influenza, measles, mumps, typhus, syphilis, tuberculosis, and chicken pox.  Illegal Aliens who haven’t been inoculated for infectious diseases, have been interdicted and detained with influenza, measles, mumps, typhus, chicken pox, tuberculous, scalia, rubella, smallpox, and even malaria..
Some Illegal Alien children entering the US, transport mosquitos in their clothing, and some of those mosquitos carry infectious diseases.   Some mosquitos transmit yellow fever, and a deadly enterovirus, EV-D68; EV-D68 has been responsible for at least 14 deaths in the US.  Some infectious diseases are also transmitted by insects in clothing, include insects that spread dengue fever. 
The US Nationality Act requires the enforcement of US Federal Quarantine Laws.  Those Quarantine Laws were once enforced meticulously on Ellis Island, where every single immigrant was screened for infectious diseases before they were allowed to enter the US. 
Because of the Catch and Release Court Decision imposed by liberal judges, the massive influx of thousands of Illegal Aliens daily, normal law enforcement duties, the need to carefully deal with small children and babies, delivery of sick and pregnant Illegal Aliens to hospitals,  the shipment of thousands of Illegal Aliens by busses and planes to the interior of the US, etc., US Quarantine Laws are not being uniformly enforced to determine if Illegal Aliens have infectious diseases. 
Therefore an unknown number of interdicted Illegal Aliens, who should have been quarantined, but were not, enter the US daily, and 2/3rd of Illegal Aliens aren’t even being interdicted to determine if they have infectious diseases.  US Border Patrol Agents are being infected by Illegal Aliens with contagious diseases, such as influenza, scalia, tuberculosis, chicken pox, measles, and mumps, and according to recent news reports, many of those infectious diseases are spreading to the general population of the US.  
DHS officials have stated that the sheer volume of Illegal Aliens coming across the border has overwhelmed health facilities, and that they are losing control at the border.   Unfortunately, the Democrat controlled Congress refuses take any action at all, to stop the massive influx of Illegal Aliens, and to prevent the very serious Public Health crisis that is developing within the United States. 

Copyright by Capt Joseph R. John.  All Rights Reserved.  The material can only posted on another Web site or distributed on the Internet by giving full credit to the author.  It may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without the permission from the author

Joseph R. John, USNA ‘62
Capt    USN(Ret)/Former FBI
Chairman, Combat Veterans For Congress PAC
2307 Fenton Parkway, Suite 107-184
San Diego, CA 92108



Then I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
-Isaiah 6:8


The Federalist Papers
June 14, 2019

Thousands Detained At Border Carrying Contagious Diseases Into US
Written by Carmine Sabia


Everyone is concerned about the outbreaks of mumps, chicken pox and measles, diseases that we thought were eradicated.
And they were eradicated, in the United States. But now that Democrats have opened the gates and allowed everyone in, the diseases are back.
They have attempted to blame the trend to not get your children vaccinated but now it appears the diseases are coming from Central America, CNN reported.
US Immigration and Customs Enforcement has placed 5,200 adult immigrants in quarantine after being exposed to mumps or chicken pox, a dramatic jump from just a few months ago, the agency says.
ICE has recorded cases of either mumps or chicken pox in 39 immigrant detention centres nationwide, an ICE official tells CNN.
Of the 5,200 detainees in quarantine across those centres, around 4,200 are for exposure to mumps. Around 800 were exposed to chicken pox and 100 have been exposed to both.
The Department of Homeland Security has repeatedly warned of the toll the increasing number of migrants at the border has taken on the department. This week, Acting DHS Secretary Kevin McAleenan urged lawmakers for additional funding to assist operations, calling the crisis “unlike anything our country has ever faced.”
In May, nearly 144,000 migrants were apprehended by Customs and Border Protection — the majority of whom were families and unaccompanied children. Many of them turn themselves in to Border Patrol.
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Just because individuals are quarantined doesn’t mean they have the mumps, but they’ve at least been exposed to it. From September 2018 to June 13, 297 people in ICE custody had confirmed cases of mumps, proven by blood test…
The agency has previously dealt with contagious diseases, like the measles, the flu and chicken pox, but last September was the first time the agency recorded mumps cases. It’s not clear where the disease derived from or how it spread. Seventy-five percent of the immigrants coming into ICE custody come from the border, though immigrants might also interact with inmates at jails, some of which also hold immigrants.
“I think there is heightened interest in this situation because it’s the mumps, which is a new occurrence in custody, but preventing the spread of communicable disease in ICE custody is something we have demonstrated success doing,” , ICE executive associate director for enforcement and removal operations, Nathalie Asher said.
“From an operational perspective, the impact is significant in the short and long term and will result in an increase in cohered detainees’ length of stay in detention, an inability to effect removal of eligible cohered detainees, and postponing scheduled consular interviews for quarantined detainees,” Asher said.