Saturday, June 20, 2009

Constitutional Points to Ponder

“An Unconstitutional Act is not law; it confers no rights: it imposes no duties; affords no protection; it creates no office; it is in legal contemplation, as inoperative as though it had never been passed.”
- Norton vs. Shelby County 118 US 425 p.442

“It is well settled that, quite apart from the guarantee of equal protection, if a law impinges upon a fundamental right explicitly or implicitly secured by the Constitution it is presumptively unconstitutional.”
- Harris V. McRae, 448 US 297 (1980) (USSC+)

“Anything repugnant to the Constitution is null and void.”
-Chief Justice John Marshall, Marbury V. Madison,1Cr.137

“On every question of construction carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed.”
–Thomas Jefferson to William Johnson, 1823. ME 15:449

“Experience hath shewn, that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.”
- Thomas Jefferson

“The particular phraseology of the Constitution of the United States confirms and strengthens the principle, supposed to be essential to all written constitutions, that a law repugnant to the Constitution is void; and that courts, as well as other departments, are bound by that instrument.”
— John Marshall: Opinion as Chief Justice in Marbury vs. Madison, 1802

“Every act of a delegated authority, contrary to the tenor of the commission under which it is exercised, is void. No legislative act, therefore, contrary to the Constitution, can be valid. To deny this, would be to affirm, that the deputy is greater than his principal; that the servant is above his master; that the representatives of the people are superior to the people themselves; that men acting by virtue of powers, may do not only what their powers do not authorize, but what they forbid.”
— Alexander Hamilton

Chuck Kolb forwarded this from

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