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Friday, October 31, 2008

Palin's Inability to Understand the Constitution

Sarah Palin continues to expound on her theories of how the Constitution works. They are theories that I never encountered in law school, undergrad or third grade civics. If you're still considering McCain, please remember you will be electing someone to the Vice Presidency who shows so little understanding of how the Constitution works that she is likely to trample right over it.

From ABC's Political Radar:
Gov. Sarah Palin said she fears her First Amendment rights may be threatened by "attacks" from reporters who suggest she is engaging in a negative campaign against Barack Obama.

"If [the media] convince enough voters that that is negative campaigning, for me to call Barack Obama out on his associations," Palin told host Chris Plante, "then I don't know what the future of our country would be in terms of First Amendment rights and our ability to ask questions without fear of attacks by the mainstream media."
Okay. Let's start with the basics. Here's what the First Amendment says:

Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press...

I'm pretty sure that limits its application to the federal government and doesn't give newspapers any authority to derogate a citizen's right to free speech. (Of course, this didn't stop John McCain from authoring campaign finance legislation that did violate the First Amendment). I'm pretty sure that the 1st Amendment also applies to state governments because of the 14th Amendment. I think the key word Ms. Know Nothing is missing is the term "government."

If she wants to talk about a chilling effect on the free speech rights of others, as a Governor, and thus a member of a state government, and thus to whom the First Amendment is applicable to, she might want to take a look at her own fear mongering and what it has done to cause some people to fear protesting at her rallies thus limiting the rights of free speech of others.

I'm just glad she can't stop me from writing this. Doesn't look like the mean old press has stopped me, either. Huh. She must not know what she's talking about. Again.

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