H.R. 3313 and the Imperial Judiciary

A Welcome Constitutional Crisis

On July 19, three days before H.R. 3313 was debated, the ACLU issued notice of an “Urgent Briefing” entitled: “How the Marriage Protection Act (H.R. 3313) Will Harm Civil Rights, and Violate the U.S. Constitution.”  The flyer explained: “The bill would shut the federal courthouse doors—including the door to the Supreme Court—to an entire group of people, would violate the core constitutional protection of separation of powers, and would set a dangerous precedent for future legislation.”  A Georgetown law professor and other experts briefed members of Congress and staffers on July 20.

During the House debate, on July 22, Democrats said that H.R. 3313 was “undermining the constitution,” “meanspirited, unconstitutional, and dangerous,” “muzzling the courts,” “opening the floodgates,” trying to “desecrate and circumvent the constitution,” “repealing Marbury v. Madison,” promoting “mobocracy,” like “driving off a cliff,” and “an attack on gays.”  On one hand, it was “unprecedented” and, on the other, “reactionary” and “going back to the Articles of Confederation.”

H.R. 3313, the object of this abuse, removes the “gay marriage” issue from the Supreme Court’s docket.  Each state’s...

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