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Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Andrew McCarthy: Government Could Strip Every Constitutional Right under "Emergency" Claim

Andrew McCarthy had a great article on National Review Online yesterday about Chuck Schumer's (D., N.Y.) claim at a Judiciary Committee hearing last week that many constitutional liberties are routinely restricted in "emergency" circumstances — in particular, Fourth Amendment rights against warrantless search and arrest, so we should do the same thing to the Second Amendment:
President Obama and his allies in Congress seek to deny the constitutional gun-ownership rights of Americans merely suspected of terror ties — even as the Left champions the non-existent immigration rights of aliens from regions notorious for terror ties. The backbone of the Democrats’ stratagem is a specious “constitutional” claim, one whose logic would empower the government to strip every civil right the Constitution is designed to protect against government encroachment.

As posited by Senator Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) at a Judiciary Committee hearing last week, Democrats claim that many constitutional liberties are routinely restricted in emergency circumstances — in particular, Fourth Amendment rights against warrantless search and arrest. Hence, the argument goes, Second Amendment rights, too, may be stripped away if Democrats can concoct an emergency — such as the ongoing crisis in which guns, apparently with minds of their own, mow down infidels.
McCarthy continues:
It is black-letter law that a statute cannot limit a constitutional safeguard. Not only is the Constitution the higher-ranking source of law; the safeguard in the Second Amendment is a safeguard against government action. If government action could undo such a safeguard, the purpose of having the safeguard in the first place would be defeated. The Second Amendment, and indeed all constitutional guarantees against governmental abuses of power, would be null and void anytime government came up with an “emergency” pretext.
McCarthy, who as a U.S. Attorney prosecuted the "Blind Sheik" for his role in the 1993 World Trade Center Bombing, takes a back seat to no one when it comes to protecting the U.S. from jihadists.  But he also understands the Constitution and explains in great detail why this theory being pushed by  the gun ban Democrats is dangerous to liberty.  Read the entire article.

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