Darryl Perry: ‘What Defines a “Constitutionalist”?’

Emailed to contact.ipr@gmail.com by Darryl Perry, Boston Tea Party National Committee Chair:

There’s a growing number of people calling themselves
“Constitutionalists” however, it is not an appropriate political
ideology. Many people on both “sides” of the false left-right paradigm
claim to be “constitutional scholars” yet disagree greatly on many
issues.

The US Constitution states, “All legislative Powers herein granted
shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall
consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” But some
“constitutional scholars” don’t seem to mind that Congress grants
“regulatory” power with the force of law to various agencies. After
all, there is a difference between “legislation” and “regulation”
however, that difference is minute.

Other “constitutionalists” disagree over the “Electoral College.” Some
of the “scholars” on the “left” wan to abolish the Electoral College,
while most on the “right” support the Electoral College, however there
is rarely a debate over whether to repeal the 12th Amendment.
Originally, the electors would cast two votes, the person receiving
the greatest number of electoral votes and a majority would be
President, the person receiving the second greatest number would be
Vice President. However, the 12th Amendment changed the way the
Electoral College worked, so that “The Electors shall meet in their
respective states, and vote by ballot for President and
Vice-President, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of
the same state with themselves; they shall name in their ballots the
person voted for as President, and in distinct ballots the person
voted for as Vice-President, and they shall make distinct lists of all
persons voted for as President, and of all persons voted for as
Vice-President and of the number of votes for each, which lists they
shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of the
government of the United States, directed to the President of the
Senate.”

I have a few questions:

If “consitutionalists” support the constitution, do they support the
original or the amended wording?

Do “constitutionalists” support an income tax (16th Amendment) or
should all taxes be apportioned among the States (Article 1 Section 2
“direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States”)?
Do “consitutionalists” support the national debt? After all, it was
enshrined by the 14th Amendment (Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law … shall not be
questioned.)

Should Senators be appointed by the States (Article 1 Section 3 “The
Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from
each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof”) or elected (17th
Amendment)?

What about issues that aren’t specifically mentioned in the
Constitution? Does the “consitutionalist” support individual liberty
based on the 9th Amendment (The enumeration in the Constitution, of
certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others
retained by the people.) or does the “consitutionalist” support a law
prohibiting the activity based on a loose interpretation of a clause
in the Constitution (Interstate Commerce Clause, Necessary and Proper Clause, General Welfare Clause, etc)?

A “consitutionalist” can be many things; conservative, liberal,
libertarian, fascist, socialist or any ideology in between.
“Constitutionalist” is not an ideology, but rather a cop-out for
holding an actual set of political beliefs.

2 thoughts on “Darryl Perry: ‘What Defines a “Constitutionalist”?’

  1. NewFederalist

    ““Constitutionalist” is not an ideology, but rather a cop-out for holding an actual set of political beliefs.”

    Right… rather like the terms “Democrat” and “Republican”.

  2. Steven wilson

    It is a language game about intention and interpretation. As there are many modes to wordship God, there are many ways to serve this country. The issue here is simply one of reference and guidance. Direction is relative to either.

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