Tag: Constitution

It’s True: Oregon has a Dictator | Constitutional Crisis

It’s True: Oregon has a Dictator | Constitutional Crisis

Show Summary: Is it time to storm the castle? You may want to after this. Governor Brown makes absurd claim her authority is higher than the Constitution. Unbelievable. Both a Constitutional scholar and the attorney for the plaintiffs in the church lawsuit v Oregon weighs in.

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Air Dates: May 16 & 17, 2020 | Dr. Joyce Malcolm & Kevin Mannix

This Week: When we see a leader make a difficult decision to shut down an economy based upon the fear that millions might die, we, as fellow human beings, feel compassion and are willing to give those in charge the benefit of the doubt. In the face of a true, catastrophic emergency—like a tidal wave or earthquake—it’s reasonable to do so and most people want to do their part to pitch in and help.

But as the situation matures and it becomes clear that the actual outcomes are not as devastating as predicted, a responsible leader—looking out for the people—relaxes the emergency’s grip to ensure the peoples’ freedoms and liberties are restored as quickly as possible.  President Trump’s response has been nothing but looking out for the people, trying to protect them even though it sacrificed an amazing economy that had easily brought his 2nd term into his grasp.

The Constitution is at Stake

But not all leadership has the same philosophies or beliefs of restoring the people’s freedoms. In fact, some want to be overly “protective” (what some might call socialism) with the added emergency powers, and to put the people into a position where they are being treated as children, with no life choices because they, the leadership, know better. (What some might call fascism.)

What has been clearly demonstrated between the two choices is one understands the importance of liberty while taking precautions and acceptable risk; the other wants to safeguard their power while subjugating your freedoms. Your freedom is a direct threat to their power over you. These are the very struggles our Founding Fathers faced. And what about the rule of law to strike a balance between authority and liberty.

The Constitution vs States

With all the complexities of finding out how our Constitution interacts with states rights, the states’ Constitution, and statutes, we invite to I Spy a Constitutional scholar: Dr. Joyce Malcolm, a faculty member at Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University, who’s an expert on the evolution of individual rights, especially during the American Colonial era. She has testified before Congress and has had her work cited in a Supreme Court decision.

We discuss with Dr. Malcolm the broader issues of the Constitution, and how its preeminence is being challenged in the wake of Emergency Declarations. Who really has the authority here? She describes historically if other situations have ever impacted the US in any way like Covid has, with rights stripped by stay-home and business shut down orders. Does our First Amendment rights supersede our governor’s power to take them away?

Governor Brown vs The Constitution

All that to set the stage for our second guest as we take a very deep dive into what states are facing with some governors’ overreach. A couple of weeks ago, we spoke with Oregon Senator, Dennis Linthicum. He told us the governor is getting around the Oregon Constitution by not relying on the Constitution. She is, instead, relying statutory power. But isn’t Oregon’s Constitution the supreme law of the land? And isn’t the U.S. Constitution even higher than that?

“The governor’s attorneys argue that the balance between the governor’s executive orders and the freedom to practice religion favors the governor.”

We speak with Kevin Mannix (of Common Sense for Oregon) who is one of the attorneys that represents churches and businesses suing Governor Kate Brown and her administration’s emergency orders to shut things down.

Incredibly, her attorneys have actually argued in their motion to dismiss, that her powers are greater than the Constitution. And that’s just the tip of what she’s said.

The Church Lawsuit in Oregon

Tune in to hear Kevin Mannix’s response and line of attack as he fights for church members to gather for worship as they please. Along with the fight for businesses who’ve been at the whim of the Governor, who deigned to allow some to remain open while closing others. Including churches.  Mr. Mannix talks about the lawsuit, it’s status, and what it means if their injunction is given the affirmative. Are there signs she is backing down?

Listen this weekend to get some very important answers.

Podcast Version

Trapped under a heavy object? Missed the show? Don’t worry—the podcast version will be right here after the show airs.

Links Mentioned

Dr. Joyce Malcom  

  • Oregon Republican lawmaker requests special session to end governor’s coronavirus state of emergency (OregonLive, May 6, 2020)
  • Governor: Large Events Canceled Statewide Until Covid-19 Treatment or Cure is Found (Canby, May 7th, 2020)
  • AG Barr says ‘draconian’ coronavirus restrictions should be re-evaluated (NY Post, Apr 9, 2020)

Kevin Mannix

  • Oregon emergency order lawsuit raises thorny legal questions (Bend Bulletin, May 14, 2020)
  • Salem salon owner says she’s been fined, forced to close for defying state orders (KATU News, May 14, 2020)
  • Attorneys for Gov. Kate Brown say lawsuit filed in Baker County challenging executive orders is baseless, should be dismissed (Baker City Herald, May 13, 2020)
    • Attorneys from state Department of Justice say governor declared emergency under state statute, not constitution
    • THIS “The governor’s attorneys argue that the balance between the governor’s executive orders and the freedom to practice religion favors the governor.”
  • Salem church joins legal effort (Salem Reporter, May 7, 2020)

Related Links

  • All of Oregon opens, Including Portland (OregonLive, May 14, 2020)
  • Oregon Churches and Religious Leaders File Lawsuit (Willamette Week, May 7, 2020)
  • 10 Oregon churches sue governor (OregonLive, May 7, 2020)
  • Oregon churches sue Gov. Brown to reopen (Fox 12, May 7, 2020)
  • Oregon businesses sue Gov. Kate (Statesman Journal, May 15, 2020)
  • Yes, some Oregon retail stores can open (KGW, May 14, 2020)
    • “All Oregon stores can open to shoppers again Friday, as long as they aren’t in a mall”
    •  “The declaration gives the green light to furniture stores, jewelry stores, boutiques and art galleries, which were closed March 23 by Gov. Brown’s stay-home order. It also includes all other standalone shops, from toy stores to bookstores to secondhand stores. Those were never technically ordered to close, state officials clarified Wednesday.”
Show 5-29 Convention of States

Show 5-29 Convention of States

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To download the show, right-click the mic, and then “Save Link As…” or use the handy player below

Guest: Michael Farris | Air Dates: July 18 & 19, 2015

Whether you’re mad at a Congress that stops nothing, or a president who thinks he can do anything or a Supreme Court that forgets everything about the Constitution, the thing that seems to unite all of us is that the federal government is divisive and out of control. If it is the nature of mankind and governments to gather more power, what can the States do about an out of control federal government that seems all too often to forget it is not an empire but a Republic?

Thankfully, our Founding Fathers provided a solution: a Convention of States.

Want to make this happen? Be sure to check out our guest post by Deborah Lee, Oregon State Director. Using Oregon as an example, she discusses how they’re using grassroots methods to make this happen and what you can do to get be a part of this.

Article V Convention of States

Do you remember hearing in high school about the checks and balances in our Constitution? Do you remember when was the last time you saw that actually happen? Article V of the U.S. Constitution provides a way out. Tune in this week to I Spy Radio to learn about the Constitutional power of a Convention of States (sometimes referred to as an “Article V Convention of States). From the Supreme Court doing constitutional gymnastics to keep Obamacare alive to rulings on gay marriage to the abuse of executive power to more than $100 trillion in federal debts and unfunded liabilities, this is a movement that is quickly gaining momentum.

We turn to Michael Farris, a Constitutional lawyer and scholar, who heads the Convention of States Project for Citizens for Self Governance. Tune in to hear: a brief primer on what a Convention of States is; the Constitutionality of a Convention of States and what it can do; the three distinct CoS movements; the difference between a Convention of States and an Assembly of States; and where the current CoS stands (who’s in and who’s not). We also answer the naysayers who claim proponents for a Convention of States are wrong on history and answer the doubters who claim a Convention of States will never happen, can’t or won’t work. Would a Convention of States open the doors to socialists who are salivating over the opportunity? We find out.

Links Mentioned

Further Reading