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Old 08-14-2004, 02:13 PM   #1
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Defend the Courts from the Congress

I am not sure if there was a thread about this or not. The Congress has made an assault on the basic principles of the constitutional powers split between the three branches of our governement.

I do not want this to be a Gay Marriage thread please, even though this is the issue they are using to do this. I would like this to be a discussion about the assault taking place against the courts. I am stunned that there was no thread to my knowledge about this in here.

[Q]Last week, by a vote of 233 to 194, the House passed the Marriage Protection Act (MPA) of 2004. The Act is a rare attempt at "jurisdiction stripping."

Typically, federal courts have the power to hear any case raising "federal questions." (They have other jurisdiction over other categories of cases as well.) But the MPA would strip these courts - including the Supreme Court - of part of that power.

Specifically, if the MPA were to become law, the federal courts would be divested of the powers to hear two kinds of "federal question" cases: Cases relating to the MPA itself, and certain cases relating to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

(DOMA attempts to prevent the states from being forced to recognized out-of-state same-sex marriages. The cases the MPA tries to preempt relate to the Constitution's Full Faith and Credit Clause, which requires the states to respect each others' public acts, records, and judgments.)

Now this is scary to me. Scarier than the Patriot act because the Patriot Act has time limits and rules that must be followed.

The House of representatives attempted to make a law to prevent courts from ruling on the law and on a prior law.

From my readings this is perfectly legal. But it sets a tremendously dangerous precident. It gives whatever party that has control of the congress the right to legislate what the courts can and cannot do. Think about this.

I am not opposed to this because of the topic, I am opposed to this because to me it begins to open a pandoras box for future legislation.

Any thoughts on this? Is this circumventing the balance of power?

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Old 08-14-2004, 02:22 PM   #2
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More information about it.

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Old 08-20-2004, 03:25 PM   #3
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If signed into law, it would likely be deemed unconstitutional
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