September 12, 2012

One important item so far neglected by both the Obama and Romney campaigns is the shape of the Supreme Court. It is obvious that there will be a change or two in the make up of the court during the next four years. At least one of the current members may be retiring, or worse.

The three oldest jurists are Ruth Bader Ginsburg, age 79 and by-far the most liberal on the bench; Antonin Scalia, age 76 and the most conservative; and Anthony Kennedy, also 76, the so-called "swing vote."

With an Obama win, the loss of Ginsburg, who has been battling pancreatic cancer since 2009, would not be a net gain for the uber-left. But the loss of either Scalia or Kennedy will definitely shift the balance of power over to the Hegelian, progressive constitutionalists who see that document as outdated and in desperate need of global re-interpretation.

The Supreme Court is the final arbiter in all things legal, including its interpretation of freedom, i.e. individual vs. collective -- conservative versus liberal.

I believe freedom is worth fighting for. I am committed to protecting the freedoms our forefathers guaranteed to us in our Constitution. There are many politicians who disagree with me, although they are loath to admit it, but their true colors show in voting records on critical legislation. And part of what makes America great is that every two years, we, too, cast our votes, rendering judgment on whether lawmakers have fulfilled their promises. And every four years our opportunity extends to the highest office in the land.

54 days remains before Election Day. This election will boil down to ideology. We can talk about the economy all we want, but not since the ideological differences between John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, has there been such a contrast as is before us this year.

The stakes are high, and for the first time ever, our Constitution hangs in the balance.

Take, for instance, the Second Amendment. As noted in one of my recent articles, the Democrats all but secretly drafted gun control legislation in their platform, the enforcement of which would set gun rights back farther than they were under the Clinton asssualt weapons ban and small arms restrictions.

In the past several years, we have achieved great victories. In two rulings, the Heller decision and the McDonald decision, the Supreme Court has ruled that all American citizens, in every state and municipality, have the right to legally possess a firearm. Those decisions were a tremendous accomplishment, and they finally ratified what our Founding Fathers envisioned when they drafted the Second Amendment.

So those who wish to deny our freedoms have been vanquished, and all is settled, right?

Wrong. There's a storm brewing on the horizon. Those who want to restrict our freedom have not surrendered. In truth, they are counting on this election to make their move. They are playing the long game, looking down the road to a day when a Scalia or Kennedy vacancy on the Court could upset the current balance.

The Heller and McDonald decisions were decided by razor-thin 5-4 votes. Those who want to overturn these decisions are betting on at least one of the nine Supreme Court justices leave service during the next four years.

Like all Supreme Court decisions, Heller and McDonald are not set in stone. If the balance on the court is shifted, a new challenge quickly can be mounted in the lower federal courts, eventually making it to the Supreme Court. Our freedoms hang in the balance by the thin gossamer thread of a single vote. If that vote turns, the whole concept of freedom will be redefined, not for the individual (as in the individual right to own and fiorearm), but collectively (the general welfare of all people collectively understtod as being free of firearms).

The threat is present not only at the Supreme Court but also throughout our federal judiciary. Right now, dozens of cases already are winding their way through federal courts to implement the Supreme Court's rulings in Heller and McDonald. Those rulings were somewhat general in tone, and now their specific impact on existing gun laws is being defined through these cases.

The president also nominates judges for all levels of the federal bench. That is why we need to make sure we have a president whose nominees for any court -- including the Supreme Court -- will support the original meaning of our Constitution. Currently four members of the Court like to interprete the Constitution in the light of the constitutions and laws of other nations. They are Obama's and Bill Clinton's appointees.

Every plan needs a backup, and this one is no different. We also need to make sure we have a U.S. Senate that is supportive of our fundamental freedoms, because the Senate votes to confirm new judges and justices. Several of the key Senate races are in highly competitive "battleground" states, and they may tip the balance of power in this country. If you live in these states, it's important to make your voice heard. Given the current makeup of the Senate, any conservative appointee by Mitt Romney will be rejected. Another Anthony Kennedy moderate might make it, but all bets are off when it comes to knowing where he or she will stand on weighty issues like the Second Amendment, or even the First Amendment's granting of "freedom of religion." (Or should it be "from" religion?)

When it comes to defending yourself and your family, can we really afford to gamble here? When it comes to whether the government can mandate what a church practices, or doesn't (as in the case with the Obamacare mandate for church organizations to provide healthcare that pays for abortions and abortificients) do we trust President Obama and the Democrats in the Senate to follow the original intent of our Founders?

Quite frankly I don't trust a Democrat with my Freedom. I certainly won't trust them with the Supreme Court.

We believe that the Constitution of the United States speaks for itself. There is no need to rewrite, change or reinterpret it to suit the fancies of special interest groups or protected classes.