YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsConstitution


December 29, 1995
It is astonishing that Jack Rakove, a professor at Stanford University, can write a column about how the Constitution should not be carelessly amended without noting that the Constitution has already been informally amended out of existence . . . amended out of existence, that is, if the purpose of the Constitution is to protect individuals' rights (as confirmed by the 9th an 14th amendments) and to assign limited, enumerated powers to the federal government (as confirmed by the 10th Amendment)
October 26, 2008
Re "Two courts, one 'sin,' " editorial, Oct. 21 The U.S. Supreme Court's task in District of Columbia vs. Heller was "to say what the law is," as established in Marbury vs. Madison. The opinion and dissents in Heller are clear-cut, relating directly to the words of the 2nd Amendment. Agree or disagree, at least both sides are on topic with a direct constitutional issue. Roe vs. Wade and Miranda vs. Arizona created rights unmentioned in the Constitution, bypassing the amendment process.
August 3, 2010 | By Maura Dolan, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
A federal judge in San Francisco will decide Wednesday whether gays and lesbianshave a constitutional right to marry. U.S. District Chief Judge Vaughn R. Walker, who presided over a trial earlier this year on the constitutionality of Proposition 8, will release his long-awaited ruling Wednesday on whether the 2008 ballot initiative violates the U.S. Constitution, a court spokeswoman said. Walker, an appointee of President George Bush, heard myriad witnesses testify about the history of marriage, the nature of homosexuality and the degree of power gays and lesbians possess in the political system during the 2 1/2-week trial in January.
January 20, 2010 | By Akhil Reed Amar
Critics of Obamacare are now upping the ante, claiming that its basic outlines are not just unwise but unconstitutional. I'm no healthcare expert, but I have spent the last three decades studying the Constitution, and the current plan easily passes constitutional muster. It's true that the Constitution grants Congress authority to legislate only in the areas enumerated in the document itself. Other matters are left to the states under the 10th Amendment. But if enumerated power does exist, the 10th Amendment objection disappears.
January 6, 2011 | By Kathleen Hennessey, Washington Bureau
When Republicans announced they would kick off their reign in the House will a full reading of the U.S. Constitution, many dismissed the gesture as merely symbolic. Few, however, expected it to be so complicated. As lawmakers prepared for the first-ever reading of the Constitution on the House floor, a brief debate erupted Thursday over exactly which portions of it should be read. Were members to read the full text, including the sections nullified by later amendments? Would a lawmaker read the phrase "three-fifths of all other persons," a description made void by the abolition of slavery?
March 4, 2005
I read Doug Bandow's commentary ("A Way to End Bitter Fights Over Justices," March 2) with utter amazement! He argues that amending the Constitution to provide fixed terms would increase federal judges' "accountability." Accountability to whom? He argues for fixed terms so that " ... elective officials could eventually reassert control.... " The whole idea of lifetime tenure is to make federal judges independent of elected officials and public opinion. Their accountability is to the Constitution only.
September 3, 1988 | Times Wire Services
Lawmakers finished work Friday on a new reformist constitution, which they immediately hailed as consolidating democracy in Brazil. The constitution, Brazil's seventh since independence from Portugal in 1822, replaces the authoritarian charter drawn up under a 21-year military dictatorship that ended in March, 1985.
February 25, 1993
When will our elected politicians stop neglecting the Constitution of the United States? Any politician in the city of Long Beach who authors censorship laws on scrambled, adult programming (on cable television) should be arrested for disobeying the First Amendment. Do Mayor Ernie Kell and the City Council actually believe that they are representing their constituents, or do they believe that they sit on top of "Higher Moral Ground" than "the rest of us"? JOE NICASSIO Long Beach
September 29, 1991
Editor's note: What follows is the statement signed by 114 of teacher Lew Boyles' ESL students at Westminster High School. Unhappy with recent newspaper articles about events at Westminster High School, Principal Bonnie Maspero last Thursday addressed 2,400 students through the school intercom during homeroom. Because newspapers, she said, often "distort," "exaggerate," and "do not always tell the truth," they really do not contribute to the well-being of our school. Therefore, she urged students not to talk to reporters.
June 18, 2002
Re "This Is War, and Military Justice Is Appropriate," Commentary, June 14: Douglas Kmiec's history lesson and reasoning are persuasive except for one critical point. His first sentence is, "We are at war." But, in fact, we are not at war. Article I, Section 8, of the Constitution is clear that "the Congress shall have power ... to declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water." That's Congress, not the president. This was no accident.
Los Angeles Times Articles