9/24/2005

Bush's second term: Target: the Judiciary

Yet more on the same article -- law

Target: the Judiciary

With the tempo of public attacks against DeLay rapidly increasing in recent months, he and his state-religion entourage have jumped out to incite mob actions against the judicial branch of government.

Pat Robertson demanded Congressional rule changes or a Constitutional amendment, to disable opposition to confirmation of state-religion fanatics as judges. Using judges who declined to order reinsertion of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube as a pretext, DeLay threatened, "the time will come for the men responsible for this to answer for their behavior." Sen. John Cornyn (R-Tex.) chimed in that the perception that judges are making political decisions could lead people to "engage in violence."

DeLay was the featured speaker to an April 8, 2005 lynch-mob-style meeting entitled "Confronting the Judicial War on Faith," run by DeLay's hard-core Texas supporters (calling themselves the Judeo-Christian Council for Constitutional Restoration). "Our next step, whatever it is, must be more than rhetoric," DeLay told the meeting. Michael Schwartz, chief of staff to Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), said there, that if a judge misbehaves, "then the judge's term has simply come to an end. The President gives them a call and says, `Clean out your desk, the Capitol Police will be in to help you find your way home.' "

According to the Washington Post (April 9, 2005), lawyer Edwin Vieira told the meeting that Soviet dictator Josef Stalin "had a slogan, and it worked very well for him, whenever he ran into difficulty: `no man, no problem.' " So that no one would miss the point about killing judges, Vieira adverted twice to this Stalin adage about the killing of opponents (the full Stalin quote is "Death solves all problems: no man, no problem").

Home-schooling advocate Michael P. Farris of Virginia told the DeLay meeting that Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy should be impeached, and that Congressmen who won't impeach him should themselves be impeached. He said judicial power should be nullified by abolishing the use of binding judicial precedents, by allowing Congress to vacate court decisions, and by mass impeachment of judges; and if "about 40 of them get impeached, suddenly a lot of these guys would be retiring." The political point was not left to the imagination. Farris said, "Medicare is a bad idea," and "Social Security is a horrible idea when run by the government."

Farris was the founder of the pro-theocracy Patrick Henry College for home-schooled students, in northern Virginia. The school's namesake, American Revolutionary-era politician Patrick Henry, tried to impose some form of state-enforced religion under Virginia law, which was bitterly opposed by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. Seeing Patrick Henry as a cheap demagogue, Jefferson wrote to Madison on Dec. 8, 1784, joking that "What we have to do I think is devoutly pray for his death." Jefferson and Madison successfully pushed through a Virginia ban on government involvement in religion[13]—a model for the similar clause in the U.S. Bill of Rights.

Before us in the coming period is a plain test, whether the Founders' beautiful work will be preserved, and the present threat to the life of the republic will be overcome.

The Christian Coalition: The Nature of the Beast

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