Welcome, dear readers to another addition of "'Constitutional' means anything on the Agenda of Barack Obama and the Left" Theater. Today, courtesy of the ACLU, we revisit what the Supremacy Clause does and does not actually mean, with an Article IV, Section 4 chaser:
The American Civil Liberties Union on Monday sued Indiana Governor Mike Pence over his refusal to allow refugees fleeing Syria's civil war to resettle in the State, saying his position violates federal authority and the U.S. Constitution.
Pence is one of [thirty-one] governors....who have publicly called on Barack Obama to stop resettling Syrian refugees following the November 13th attacks in Paris that killed 130 people.
The governors cited concerns that some refugees [are] associated with Islamic State [jihadist]s.
In the lawsuit, the ACLU said decisions concerning immigration and refugee resettlement are exclusively the province of the federal government and cannot be dictated by State officials.
"Attempts to pre-empt that authority violate both equal protection and civil rights laws and intrude on authority that is exclusively federal," ACLU of Indiana legal director Ken Falk said in a statement.
Wrong and wrong.
Article IV, Section 4:
The United States shall....protect [every State in this Union] against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence. [emphasis added]
Far from being empowered to force States to be invaded by violent hostiles, the federal government is required to protect the States from both invasion and terrorism. And it has been conclusively proven that ISIS has massively infiltrated the Syrian "refugee" stream. So it is, in fact, Barack Obama who is violating HIS constitutional obligations, not, in this case, Governor Mike Pence.
Furthermore, immigration is a concurrent power of both the federal government and the States. Indeed, the only passage in the founding document that specifically empowers the federal government on immigration matters is Article I, Section 9, which states:
The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the Year , but a Tax or duty may be imposed on such Importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each Person. [emphasis added]
This clause pertained to the Atlantic slave trade, for historical reference. But here as well, the States clearly had the right of first refusal on immigration into their territories, a legal precedent if ever there was one.
Lastly, let us recall precisely what the Supremacy Clause says and what it does not say:
Article VI, Clause 2:
This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof, and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land, and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding. [emphases added]
i.e. Only constitutional federal laws are the "supreme Law of the Land". And nothing in the Constitution empowers the federal government to force States to accept "immigrants" or "refugees" they do not want to accept. Ergo, Governor Pence, and every other State chief executive in the country who does not wish to allow the Islamic State to smuggle jihadists into their communities to wreak havoc and mayhem on their citizens abso-damn-lutely well have the legal and constitutional authority to close the metaphorical gates and tell Barack Obama, "This far, no further".
But I'm sure the ACLU has judge-shopped quite effectively, and while the Seventh Circuit has a 9-3 Republican-appointed majority (with two vacancies), this is the same Seventh Circuit that sided with Planned Parenthood yesterday, so YMMV. I just hope this case reaches the SCOTUS while there are any federal judges left alive to hear it.