Since Dean Chemerinsky thinks we need to fix the U.S. Constitution why doesn’t he go with the ways available to either change it or get what he might consider a more favorable interpretation?
Taking these in reverse order, a more favorable interpretation would mean a more liberal/progressive Supreme Court majority. Ideally, a majority that would be willing to grant certiorari to cases important to progressives.
Obviously, this is going to take a while and require a progressive Senate whenever a vacancy comes up. It’s a bit unpredictable, as well, because there is no guarantee that a vacancy will always coincide with a progressive President and a progressive Senate.
The other way to make the Constitution more progressive is simply to change it. The document itself includes instructions that lay out two methods for getting the ball rolling.
First method: Elect a Congress where supermajorities in the House and Senate will approve an amendment to either replace, modify or repeal an existing section. Then all that needs to be done is to have progressive majorities in three-fourths (38)of the states vote to ratify the alteration.
Second method: Get two-thirds (34) of the state legislatures to call a constitutional convention. After the convention meets and agrees on changes, it’s once again a matter of three-fourths (38) to ratify.
Both of these methods are likely to be relatively quicker but may prove to be more difficult than loading the bench of the Supreme Court. That can all be done in Washington without having to go back to the states for permission.
So what are we going to change? Modify the Fourth Amendment and strike “life” from the due process clause of the Fifth Amendment?
Changing the First and Second Amendments won’t change the rights they protect. It is clear that the framers of the Constitution consider freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of the press and the right to assemble along with the right to keep and bear arms to be natural rights that exist independently of the Constitution. Both amendments are simply prohibitions on the government’s ability to curtail those rights.
I often wonder why people such as Dean Chemerinsky aren’t aware of this when they want their views to have the force of law.
Experts on constitutional law, such as Dean Chemerinsky, former President Barack Obama and retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens seem to have difficulty with the document. It says what it says, is easily read and comprehended by any moderately literate person and it says how it may be changed. We have amended it a number of times for clarification.
Maybe these people just don’t want to put forth the effort to achieve their aims. Tough; there’s nothing in the rules that says inflicting your views on everyone else has to be easy.