Jun 27, 2015
Scott Walker Implies He'll Try to Repeal Fourteenth Amendment
Even as couples cheer the historic Supreme Court win for marriage equality (Opoien, the Capital Times), Gov. Scott Walker said he's calling for a Constitutional Amendment that would repeal the right to marry acclaimed by the Court yesterday.
"The states are the proper place for these decisions to be made, and as we have seen repeatedly over the last few days, we will need a conservative president who will appoint men and women to the Court who will faithfully interpret the Constitution and laws of our land without injecting their own political agendas," Walker said in a statement. "As a result of this decision, the only alternative left for the American people is to support an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to reaffirm the ability of states to continue to define marriage." (Opoien, The Capital Times)
The statement provides more evidence that Scott Walker knows virtually nothing about the United States Constitution, an interesting state of affairs for a man who wants to be president.
The claims of equality by marriage equity advocates are so overwhelmingly supported by the Court in Obergefell v. Hodges, it is inescapable that the right to marry is now a fundamental liberty. (It was before.)
Scott Walker or anyone else cannot now wish away the fundamental liberties of marriage protected by the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses, cited by Justice Kennedy, without repealing the Fourteenth Amendment, a protector of individuals' rights against bigoted state government.
Walker's Constitutional Amendment would of course never pass.
But Walker's animus towards gays is the very irrational societal and state force from which Obergefell v. Hodges protects individuals' liberty.
Walker's proposed Constitutional Amendment, (I would love to read the language), is posturing for the bigoted vote, but Walker's proposal also reveals him as a rube on the eve of his announcement for his run for the Republican Party's nomination for the presidency
Such an Amendment would have to repeal the protections in the Fourteenth Amendment, namely the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses that as noted shield individuals from states and bigoted forces that would ban interracial unions and same-sex marriages. In fact, whole sections of the Constitution would have to be rewritten for Walker to achieve his stated objective to take away citizens' liberty and give it to the states.
"A first premise of the Court’s relevant precedents is that the right to personal choice regarding marriage is inherent in the concept of individual autonomy. This abiding connection between marriage and liberty is why Loving invalidated interracial marriage bans under the Due Process Clause," writes Kennedy.
Its no accident Justice Kennedy cited Loving v. Virginia (1967) numerous times throughout Obergefell.
In the sweeping win in Obergefell v. Hodges, the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses cited by Justice Kennedy make clear that the Constitution's fundamental rights apply with equal force to same-sex couples as for different-sex couples.
This fundamental right to marry cannot be destroyed by a state because political interests in the state hate gays, anymore than racists can anymore stop black folks from marrying.
"No longer may this liberty be denied," Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the majority in the historic decision. "No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were." (Liptak, New York Times)
Don't look for Scott Walker's idea of a Constitutional Amendment to advance, but Walker did manage to reveal himself an ignoramus from Wisconsin.