Thank you Committee members for this opportunity to speak before you today in support of this act. I also thank you for taking this time out of your busy lives to serve the citizens of this great Sovereign State of Utah. My comments here today are designed to hopefully correct what has been said and what may be of concern for you regarding this piece of legislation.
It may be a common belief that our three branches of government are the Judicial, Legislative, and Executive, but what would you say if this common belief is more of a partial truth? The fulness of the truth concerning our system of governance actually consists of the federal government, the States, and the People. Hence Articles 1,2 and 3 of the US Constitution as well as the Ninth and Tenth Amendments. Then in the individual State governments we also see the Legislative, Executive and the Judicial republican system of governance. Then through the people they have the right to utilize the electoral system to choose their government. All of which creates the perfect system of checks and balances to protect the people’s inalienable rights so perfectly described in the Declaration of Independence, the US Constitution and the State of Utah Constitution. James Madison “the father of the Constitution” had this to say about our US Constitution in his Report of 1800 to the Virginia State legislature.
The resolution, having taken this view of the federal compact, proceeds to infer, “that, in case of a deliberate, palpable, and dangerous exercise of other powers, not granted by the said compact, the states, who are parties thereto, have the right and are in duty bound to interpose for arresting the progress of the evil, and for maintaining within their respective limits, the authorities, rights, and liberties appertaining to them.”
It appears to your committee to be a plain principle, founded in common sense, illustrated by common practice, and essential to the nature of compacts, that, where resort can be had to no tribunal, superior to the authority of the parties, the parties themselves must be the rightful judges in the last resort, whether the bargain made has been pursued or violated. The Constitution of the United States was formed by the sanction of the states, given by each in its sovereign capacity. It adds to the stability and dignity, as well as to the authority of the Constitution, that it rests on this legitimate and solid foundation. The states, then, being the parties to the constitutional compact, and in their sovereign capacity, it follows of necessity, that there can be no tribunal above their authority, to decide in the last resort, whether the compact made by them be violated; and, consequently, that, as the. parties to it, they must themselves decide, in the last resort, such questions as may be of sufficient magnitude to require their interposition.
Madison clearly states that the US Constitution is a Charter that each independent State agreed to upon their respective ratification of the US Constitution in their individual States for the sole purpose of uniting the States under one Supreme Law, Article 6 Section 2 of the US Constitution. In this quote he also stated that the States when the federal government violates the Charter “the US Constitution” are duty bound to enforce the Charter where the Federal government is lacking thereof. Making the terms Nullification completely constitutional, under the Ninth, Tenth, eleventh, and even twelfth amendments in the US Constitution.
Some critics of this bill may use Article 1 Section 8 in opposition to the said bill stating that it violates the Commerce Clause. Well lets once again turn to what James Madison “the father of the Constitution had to say regarding Article 1 Section 8.
In the existing Constitution, they make the following part of Sec. 8, “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and excises, to pay the debts, and to provide for the common defence and general welfare of the United States.”
This similarity in the use of these phrases in the two great federal charters, might well be considered, as rendering their meaning less liable to be misconstrued in the latter; because it will scarcely be said, that in the former they were ever understood to be either a general grant of power, or to authorize the requisition or application of money by the old Congress to the common defence and general welfare, except in the cases afterwards enumerated, which explained and limited their meaning; and if such was the limited meaning attached to these phrases in the very instrument revised and remodelled by the present Constitution, it can never be supposed that when copied into this Constitution, a different meaning ought to be attached to them.
He goes on to say.
The paragraph in Art. I. sect. 8, which contains the power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and excise; to pay the debts, and provide for the common defence and general welfare, having been already examined, will also require no particular attention in this place. It will have been seen that in its fair and consistent meaning, it cannot enlarge the enumerated powers vested in Congress.
James Madison continues with the of the Necessary and Proper Clause Article 1 Section 8 Clause 18, stating.
The plain import of this clause is, that Congress shall have all the incidental or instrumental powers necessary and proper for carrying into execution all the express powers; whether they be vested in the government of the United States, more collectively, or in the several departments or officers thereof. It is not a grant of new powers to Congress, but merely a declaration, for the removal of all uncertainty, that the means of carrying into execution, those otherwise granted, are included in the grant.
Whenever, therefore, a question arises concerning the constitutionality of a particular power, the first question is, whether the power be expressed in the Constitution. If it be, the question is decided. If it be not expressed, the next inquiry must be, whether it is properly an incident to an express power, and necessary to its execution. If it be, it may be exercised by Congress. If it be not. Congress cannot exercise it.
Now lets look at the matter of Judicial review, and or Marbury vs. Madison. In a brief historical context of the case. The sole reasoning for the case was to settle the dispute of presidential appointments and how they are to be treated. It was never over any particular bill and or law. If we read the actual words from the case itself, in many circumstances it perfectly lays out that it is imperative for the Courts to use the Constitution as a guide to interpret certain laws and or cases. Not to interpret the Charter itself. Lets look at what this case actually says in order to verify this fact shall we?
Certainly all those who have framed written constitutions contemplate them as forming the fundamental and paramount law of the nation, and consequently, the theory of every such government must be, that an act of the legislature, repugnant to the constitution, is void.
Then with Marbury’s closing statement of this opinion he states so perfectly clear.
It is also not entirely unworthy of observation that in declaring what shall be the supreme law of the land, the constitution itself is first mentioned; and not the laws of the United States generally, but those only which shall be made in pursuance of the constitution, have that rank.
Thus, the particular phraseology of the constitution of the United States confirms and strengthens the principle, supposed to be essential to all written constitutions, that a law repugnant to the constitution is void; and that courts, as well as other departments, are bound by that instrument.
The rule must be discharged.
Now I know what you may be thinking why would I use this quote when it uses the term discharged? Well if we look at the 1828 Merriam Webster’s dictionary it says that the execution means either to perform or executed.
In closing I would like you to remember your individual oaths of office, which is to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America as well as the Constitution of the State of Utah, and pass this excellent bill. To enforce the Constitution of the United States America where the federal government is clearly lacking in this regard. Thank you for your time.