February 28, 2014 Radio Commentary

Steam Roller! Look Out!

Radio Commentary, 90.7, 91.7 New Life FM, March 1, 2014 – By Sue Ella Deadwyler

Good morning, Jim. Last year’s S.R. 371, calling for a constitutional convention, passed the Senate March 7, 2013 and the House February 20, 2014. So, it’s a done deal. HOWEVER, two other calls – S.R. 70 and S.R. 736 – have passed the Senate and are in the House. PLUS another call – H.R. 1215 – passed the House and is in the Senate. MEANING, a conference committee COULD be called to sort out the EXACT language these guys are looking for and THEN pass it out of committee using one of those bills as a vehicle, pass it and send it to Congress as Georgia’s call for an Article V convention. How about them apples???? The steamroller is in motion and it’s rolling in three vehicles!

During all this, I was called a “Nay-Sayer,” a name I wear proudly, because it means I’m against a constitutional convention and I’m in good company. In 2004 the entire General Assembly became Nay-Sayers by rescinding every call Georgia ever made for a constitutional convention. I, also, feel honored to be among Nay-Sayers, such as University of Maryland’s School of Law Professor Christopher Brown who said, “We already have three branches of government, why create [a fourth] ‘unknown power’ to do even more mischief?”

Then, Nay-Sayer Neil Cogan of the Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, said, “My understanding of the Federal Convention is that … neither the Congress nor the States may limit the amendments to be considered and proposed … [T]he convention may be controlled in subject matter only by itself and by the people… through the ratification process.” Continue reading

February 17, 2014 Newsletter

Bills Prohibit Foreign Law in Georgia Courts

S.R. 808 introduced by Senator Tommie Williams, January 28th proposes an amendment to the Georgia Constitution that would prohibit the application of foreign law in Georgia courts, if the foreign law violates rights guaranteed to citizens by the U.S. Constitution and the Georgia Constitution or the public policy of the State of Georgia. If S.R. 808 passes the House and Senate by a 2/3 vote, it would be a two-part question for voters on the November Ballot. To emphasis the question’s two parts, this writer has designated them (a) and (b) as follows:

“Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended so as (a) to prohibit the application of foreign law in violation of rights guaranteed natural citizens by the U.S. and Georgia Constitutions and (b) to prohibit the application of laws enacted by other states in the U.S. that violate the public policy of the State of Georgia?”

Concerning (a) above: Since foreign law has already been applied in other states, to the detriment of their citizens, it’s expedient that legislators pass preventive measures before Georgia courts allow foreign law to influence judicial decisions. Certainly, Georgia should follow the lead of eight other states – Tennessee, Louisiana, Arizona, Kansas, Oklahoma, Alabama, Missouri and North Carolina – that prohibit the use of foreign law. In addition to those eight states, such action is pending in 20 other states, including Florida, where it was recently approved by the Florida House of Representatives.

Concerning (b) above: On Wednesday, February 12, 2014 the U.S. Western District Court of Kentucky at Louisville ruled that Kentucky must recognize same-sex marriages performed outside that state, despite Kentucky’s law and constitutional amendment that do not recognize same-sex unions as marriage.

Therefore, Georgia SHOULD pass S.R. 808 as additional protection against any future judicial effort to strike Georgia’s constitutional amendment that defines marriage, prohibits same-sex marriage and prohibits the recognition of same-sex marriage conducted elsewhere.

ACTION – Support. Ask Senate Judiciary Committee members to vote YES on S.R. 808. Call Senators McKoon, Ch., 404 463-3931; Crosby, V.Ch., 463-5258; Bethel, 651-7738; Carter, 463-1376; Cowsert, 463-1383; Fort, 656-5091; Ligon, 656-0045; Stone, 463-1314; and Tippins, 657-0406.

H.B. 895 introduced by Representative Hightower on February 4, 2014 provides that no court, arbitration panel administrative agency, or other tribunal shall enforce a foreign law, if doing so would violate a right guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution or the Georgia Constitution. It defines the meaning of foreign law, supports and regulates S.R. 808, a proposed constitutional amendment to prevent the application of foreign law in Georgia courts.

ACTION – Support. Contact House Judiciary Committee Representatives Willard, Ch., 404 656-5124; Fleming, V-Ch., 656-0152; Allison, Sec., 656-0188; Bruce, 656-0314; Caldwell, 656-0325; Evans, 656-6372; Golick, 656-5943; Jacobs, 656-5116; Jones, 656-7859; Kelley, 656-0287; Lindsey, 656-5024; Mabra, 656-7859; Oliver, 656-0265; O’Neal, 656-5052; Powell, 656-7855; Rutledge, 656-0109; Stephenson, 656-0126; Welch, 656-0109; Weldon, 656-0213; and Wilkinson, 463-8143.

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February 14, 2014 Radio Commentary

Dangerous: A Compact Commission

Radio Commentary, 90.7, 91.7 New Life FM, February 14, 2014 – By Sue Ella Deadwyler

Good morning, Jim. On February 4th, the House Judiciary Committee heard testimony on H.B. 794 that sets up a Compact Commission to encourage 34 states to apply for an Article V constitutional convention to pass a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The committee had been well-oiled to pass H.B. 794 and did so after hearing testimony FOR its passage and, then from ME, the only person speaking against it in the hearing. After a voice vote, a member of the committee asked for a hand-vote, which the chairman refused, saying the representative would have to over-rule the chair to get another vote. The representative over-ruled the chair and the chair held another voice vote. He would NOT have a hand-vote.

When it was my turn to speak, I explained that I had an opposing view that I would read from the bill’s interpretation by John Eidsmoe, Professor of Constitutional Law at Thomas Goode Jones School of Law at Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama. These are some of the Professor’s comments I shared with the House Judiciary Committee: Continue reading

February 7, 2014 Radio Commentary

An Up-Side-Down Day

Radio Commentary, 90.7, 91.7 New Life FM, February 7, 2014 – By Sue Ella Deadwyler

Good morning, Jim.  Last Tuesday was one of those up-side-down days, when liberals were on the right side and conservatives were on the wrong side of the issue.

Two of the longest-serving Democrats in the Georgia Senate eloquently explained the dangers of a constitutional convention, while Republicans kept wearing their rose-colored-glasses and repeating their talking points.

The debate was about S.R. 736 that applies to Congress for a convention of the states under Article V of the United States Constitution.  As a continuing resolution, it would remain in effect until at least 34 state legislatures make the same request on the same subject.   Continue reading