Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Un-Huckabee Amendment

Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee told a crowd in Warren, Michigan, Tuesday that "what we need to do is to amend the Constitution so it's in God's standards rather than try to change God's standards."

That's nice. Everybody needs a hobby.

But if Mike Huckabee's hobby is starting to infringe on your own life and liberty, you might want to consider this:

The evangelical-backed Human Life Amendment, which would amend the Constitution to ban all abortions, isn't the only option in the constitutional amendment department.

Instead of amending the Constitution to abolish the right to privacy, we can amend the Constitution to secure it.

Instead of worrying about Supreme Court nominations, we can follow the instructions in Article V and amend the Constitution to say clearly that a woman has a right to privacy in the first trimester of pregnancy.

I'll bet you never thought of doing that, and I'll bet you already think it can't be done.

Maybe you're right.

But just for a minute, let's talk about privacy. Just between us. Just you, me, and the estimated seventy-five percent of the country that doesn't want to see Roe v. Wade overturned.

Why should we rely on the courts? Why not take the issue out of the courts, out of the Senate confirmation hearings for federal judges, and out of our presidential elections? Why not amend the Constitution so that it actually says what the Supreme Court says it means?

A constitutional amendment requires the ratification of three-quarters of the states to become law. That means it needs a majority vote in the legislatures of thirty-eight states.

The amendment process can be started with a two-thirds vote in both the House and the Senate or, alternatively, with a constitutional convention requested by two-thirds of the state legislatures.

You heard right. If the amendment is blocked in the House and Senate, the state legislatures can go around them.

And even better: The president has no role; the vice president has no role; the Supreme Court has no role. A majority in thirty-eight state legislatures can tell them all to get lost.

Coincidentally, that's what you can tell Mike Huckabee the next time he gets in your face and declares that God has called him to take your rights out of the Constitution.

Copyright 2008

Editor's note: You might be interested in "Why There is No Constitutional Right to Privacy, and How to Get One" at