So You Want A Civil War?
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2019-05-26 10:30 by Karl Denninger
in States , 843 references Ignore this thread
So You Want A Civil War?
[Comments enabled]

When in the course of human events.....

There are only a few ways to lawfully amend the Constitution -- they're enumerated in the process that it provides within its boundaries for doing so.

There are myriad ways to break the contract the Constitution provides.  Once broken no other party allegedly bound by the terms of a deal have any obligation -- not ethically, morally or legally -- to uphold the bargain themselves.

The State "popular vote compact" is one such attempt.

There are many who claim that those who disagree with the concept should be afraid of further states signing on.

I'm not afraid at all.

The Electoral College was constructed by the Founders to guarantee that less-populous states and regions had a reasonable voice in the selection of the President and Vice-President.  The reason for it is identical to the purpose of The Senate; to prevent tyranny of the majority, especially a concentrated majority in major population centers..

Those protections are an inherent and inviolate component of the Constitution.

Proponents argue that the Constitution directly stipulates that the legislature of a given state may select how electors are chosen.  This is true, however there is a problem: Congress must consent to any Interstate Compact, which makes any such agreement without an explicit enabling federal law void.

So says Article 1 Section 10, prohibited powers:

No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, lay any duty of Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent Danger as will not admit of delay.

So while the state legislatures may set forth the elector process they may not collude with other States without the explicit consent of Congress.  There is some case law on this at the USSC, and the boundary is clearly set there -- state compacts that impact, lessen or abrogate federal power always require Congressional approval.  This compact would effectively remove the US House of Representative's ability to break ties because there would never be a tie; it therefore has the effect of writing out an entire section of the Constitution and thus diminishes federal power.

It's facially unconstitutional for this reason and the legislatures know it.

Never mind that I can find another means by which it's unconstitutional -- specifically, it is effectively "selling" the electors of a state to voters who are not residents of said state.  That the "price" is votes instead of dollars is not material; something of value (a popular vote) is exchanged for something of value (an electoral vote.)  The state legislature is not empowered to effectively sell its electoral process, especially to persons outside of the state in question, and yet that is exactly what the compact envisions.

Now perhaps that's a bit of interpretation and who knows how the Supremes would rule on it.

But the compact issue isn't a matter of interpretation; that's a black letter prohibition on state governments in Article 1 Section 10.

A State that declares and acts in furtherance of putting up the middle finger by engaging in an explicit prohibited act in the Constitution has declared said Constitution including its benefits to said state and the residents thereof VOID.

Wanna go there?  Go right ahead.  By declaring the benefits and protections of the Constitution VOID said state has made itself ineligible to submit electors at all.  It is no longer within the State's right demand any of the benefits and privileges of Statehood nor any of the protections of the Constitution.

Should it thereafter attempt to demand same every other state and citizen of any other said state can quite-legitimately tell said government agents (including law enforcement, tax collectors and similar) to pound sand as they are no longer entitled to the full faith and credit of their laws beyond their state boundaries (one of the privileges and benefits of being a State) and should they try to enforce same the people have every right to declare such an act of civil war against them and respond accordingly.

This does not just apply to government agencies either.  Want gas through that pipe or electrical power through that overhead line as it crosses a state boundary?  Tough crap.  Try to force it to happen?  How?  You've declared you're not part of the Constitution any more; therefore you're not entitled to the protections that lie in the Interstate Commerce Clause.  Try to enforce that and again the other states have the right to treat that as an act of civil war.

Still wanna go there folks?

Down this road lies madness -- a literal shooting war between state agencies (e.g. state cops, etc) and the citizens of all the other states they try to demand respect from.  This is not only a numerical loser it's a strategic loser on an instant basis; California, for example, would be rendered unable to provide power to homes and businesses as fully one third of their electrical power comes from outside the state and they are thus utterly dependent on that outside supply.  Never mind the water issue; Southern California is utterly dependent on neighboring states for its fresh water supply as well and on the very day this goes into effect none of those states have any obligation to allow one drop of said water to flow.

Go ahead and do it; there are hills worth dying on and this is one of them.

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