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Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Subj: The Supreme Court and Courts in general within the US...
Posted: Tue May 03, 2022 at 08:45:38 am EDT (Viewed 237 times)

I was hesitant to post this with all of the music threads providing a nice break from what the boards can be but with the upcoming SCOTUS decision (presuming the leaks are correct) and general track record of the court I had been thinking.

Courts within the U.S. have enormous power. When the country was founded it was not really even specified within the Constitution what sort of power they had, as Judicial Review came later. And it has a mixed history at best, like any government institution I guess. Mostly it has reinforced the status quo or helped keep those rich and powerful rich and powerful. There have been breaks from that but they are the exception and not the norm.

Which leads to my pondering. I heard this somewhere along the line and it is for sure not a new thought.

Why not change the process of passing Constitutional Amendments?

Right now it is very hard to change the Federal Constitution. An amendment may be proposed by a two-thirds vote of both Houses of Congress, or, if two-thirds of the States request one, by a convention called for that purpose. The amendment must then be ratified by three-fourths of the State legislatures, or three-fourths of conventions called in each State for ratification. And the reasoning is to make the process require major consensus.

However, the current world we find ourselves in, or rather the world in which the country has existed for a century and more, is that effectively the Courts can hamstring things, create rights, take them away and reinterpret them based on whims more or less. The legal reasoning around the arguments in either direction may be valid or not depending on a specific example.

This leads to the impression of courts holding the fate of the country in their hands. Issues of marriage, medical , workplace and environmental policy all more or less set by these groups.

Alot of this has to do with the country being divided so the normal channels have failed since folks cannot agree on the problems facing the world, what should be priority and what should be done to fix them at all.

Should it be something less difficult, like a majority of Congress or states to propose and Amendment and then 2/3 of state legislatures instead of 3/4? It would still be challenging to do but less so. And given the makeup of states at the present I am sure I would disagree with most, but seems better to me to at least have it based on that in the end.

On another tangent that undermines my point above it is possible that SCOTUS rules that state legislatures can gerrymander and stay in power by officially ruling in 2019 that federal courts have no say and then that state courts cannot contest state legislatures on election issues. This has not happened, but is for sure possible. Which would be bad in general for our system of representative democracy.

Look Raist bunnies...