Posted by Paul Andrew Mitchell, B.A., M.S. on September 12, 1998 at 14:36:45:
In Reply to: Re: When the Civil War ended ... posted by New Kid on the Block on September 12, 1998 at 13:16:36:
Congress violated the Guarantee Clause when
it used extortion to compel southern states
to ratify the 14th amendment proposal.
Even then, that proposal failed by one vote,
EVEN IF we allow the screw-ball method of
counting which the feds have forced into
the history books.
A Republican Form of government is one in
which the People are sovereign. Confer
at "Republican Form" in Black's Law Dictionary,
Sixth Edition, as quoted in "The Federal Zone."
The federal position was simple: either ratify
the 14th amendment proposal, or we won't
remove our federal troops from those 10
southern states which had not yet ratified it.
The one southern state which was spared the
re-invasion of federal troops, was the one
southern state which had already voted
in favor of the 14th amendment proposal.
This is extortion, pure and simple, and the
southern legislatures which voted under
duress, could never have voted lawfully
under this kind of overt threat and
overt military occupation.
Why is it that the federal government
regards compelled votes to be valid votes?
The entire history of American constitutional
law looks with horror upon compelled conduct
-- for being diametrically opposed to the
fundamental principles of freedom which
we hold most dear in this country.
(The legal right to compel testimony in court
is the one and ONLY one legal obligation
which the U.S. Constitution imposes upon
any state Citizens.)
This is the overwhelming significance of
the historical facts recited by the
Utah Supreme Court in Dyett v. Turner.
EVEN COUNTING COMPELLED VOTES, THEY CAME
UP ONE VOTE SHORT (27 instead of 28).
See also Ex parte Merryman, discussed
elsewhere in this forum, for a passionate
reiteration of those fundamental principles,
such as due process of law and basic
The net result of the North's victory was
that it prevented the southern states from
seceding from the Union; it never authorized
the U.S. Congress to exercise any new powers.
Only the Union states have that authority, as
reserved by Article V, and that authority can
ONLY be exercised by the free, unfettered
and un-compelled votes of state legislatures.
Thus, in America, the case is widely different:
law is made by compact, not by force or fraud.
The case for some martial law, artificially
extended long after the Civil War, is
quite neatly destroyed by the North's
proposal to ban slavery. As repeated succinctly
by the Utah Supreme Court, that proposal
(to ban slavery) could not have been
ratified, without favorable votes by
the very southern states which had failed
If the Secretary counted their
votes as necessary to its ratification,
then the feds have shot themselves in the
foot by arguing that Congress had any
lawful authority whatsoever to compel
a specific result from those very same
states as they considered a subsequent
proposal -- one with far more reaching
consequences. No such authority exists,
If Andrew Johnson made any serious errors
at that time, I believe it was his failure
to take the Reconstruction Acts directly
before the U.S. Supreme Court. Instead,
when his veto was overridden, he obeyed
Congress instead. This was his fatal
constitutional error. If the High Court
had upheld those laws, he would have been
on solid ground to dispatch troops back
into the South. If the High Court had
struck down those laws, he would have
been on solid ground to burn those bills
We do NOT make law by force in America.
We may en-force it with force, but we cannot,
and will NEVER, make law in America by force.
It is an oxymoron of the most egregious sort.
/s/ Paul Andrew Mitchell, B.A., M.S.
Counselor at Law, Private Attorney General
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