A Draft Resolution of Congressional Censure
Kennedy, O'Connor, Rehnquist, Scalia,
for Their Betrayal of the American
Letter of Introduction
The Counts of Censure
II. The Legal Controversy in Florida
III. The U.S. Supreme Court's Intervention
IV. The U.S. Supreme Court's Decision
V. The Anomalous Nature of the Per Curiam Rulings
VI. The Tragic Impact of the Supreme Court's Rulings
VII. The Voice of Memory
Therefore it is resolved that . . .
PDF Version of Resolution
I. Applicable Laws and Principles.
Whereas the United States Constitution preserves the individual states as sovereign units of republican government within the United States of America and ascribes to them a wide range of autonomous and concurrent powers coexistent with federal governmental powers;
Whereas the separation of powers provisions contained in the United States Constitution are bedrock principles of our nation's checked-and-balanced, republican form of government—created from revolution, redeemed through civil war, and sustained so long thereafter by fervent devotion to the rule of law;
Whereas, pursuant to the separation of powers, the Constitution establishes independent, particularized provisions for selecting officers of the three branches of the federal government and the head officers of said branches of government, including the President of the United States as head of the Executive branch;
Whereas the President of the United States serves as Commander in Chief of the armed forces and wields enormous influence over the foreign and domestic policies of the nation, including the power to propose treaties and legislation; appoint federal department heads, ambassadors, and federal judges; administrate and execute the laws; annually report to Congress and the American people on the State of the Union; and to represent the United States as head of state in all substantive and ceremonial dealings with foreign nationals;
Whereas all American citizens registered to vote are eligible to cast a ballot in the quadrennial election to fill the office of President of the United States, and said officeholder is acknowledged to be among the most preeminent personages of the nation and in the world;
Whereas the United
States Constitution determines the manner of electing the President and
Vice President of the United States and prescribes a role for two (and
only two) institutions: state legislatures before Election Day and Congress
thereafter, as follows:
Article II, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution declares: "Each state shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors [for President and Vice President of the United States] . . . . The Congress may determine the Time of chusing [sic] the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States."
Whereas, resulting from the disputed presidential contest of 1876 between Democratic candidate Samuel J. Tilden and Republican candidate Rutherford B. Hayes, Congress passed the Electoral Count Act of 1887 in order to provide a detailed blueprint for resolving—through political means—future disputes concerning the bona fides of state presidential electors, the provisions of which are codified in 3 USC, Secs. 5, 6, and 15 et seq.;
Whereas it is logical to conclude from a reading of said statute and its legislative history that Congress intended to commit the power to resolve such controversies over the bona fides of state presidential electors to the Congress (both houses) and to the states, rather than to the federal courts; see H. Rep. No. 1638, 49th Cong., 1st Sess., 2 (1886), report submitted by Rep. Caldwell, Select Committee on the Election of President and Vice-President ["The two Houses are, by the Constitution, authorized to make the count of electoral votes. They can only count legal votes, and in doing so must determine, from the best evidence to be had, what are legal votes . . . . The power to determine rests with the two Houses, and there is no other constitutional tribunal."] Accord: Framer of the Constitution, James Madison, July 25, 1787 (reprinted in 5 Elliot's Debates on the Federal Constitution 363 (2d ed. 1876)) ["Madison . . . believed that allowing the judiciary to choose the presidential electors 'was out of the question.'"]—cited in Breyer, dissenting opinion Part B, p. 12, Bush v. Gore; No. 00-949 (U.S. Dec. 12, 2000).
Whereas, for the
presidential election of 2000, Congress determined that the day for Congress
to receive electoral vote reports from the fifty States and the District
of Columbia, and, if necessary, to entertain, adjudicate and resolve objections
thereto, was January 6, 2001;