Publius-Huldah's Blog

Understanding the Constitution

Why the States must Nullify the National Voter Registration Act Now!

By Publius Huldah

From the earliest days of our Republic, 1 some years before our federal Constitution of 1787 was ratified; 2 the Citizens of the States determined the qualifications for voting, and memorialized these qualifications in their State Constitutions. In keeping with this hallowed practice, the Citizens of North Carolina recently amended Article VI of their State Constitution to add to the Qualifications for voting the requirement that persons voting in person present a photo ID [link].

But lawsuits have been filed in federal court objecting to the photo ID’s; and the judge on one of them, U.S. District Judge Loretta Biggs [Mid. Dist. North Carolina], has announced that she will issue a preliminary injunction against the requirement that voters present a photo ID. North Carolina election officials scurried to comply with Judge Biggs’ announcement; and Republican politicians called for an appeal [link].

The purpose of this paper is to show a better way to proceed – to show how North Carolina can enforce the US Constitution and the qualifications for voting set forth in its State Constitution.

We begin by looking at what our federal Constitution says about qualifications of voters.

1. Our federal Constitution enshrines the pre-existing practice where States set the qualifications for voters

In our federal Constitution of 1787, the States expressly retained their pre-existing power to determine the qualifications of voters: Article I, §2, cl. 1, US Constit., says,

“The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States, and the Electors in each State shall have the Qualifications requisite for Electors of the most numerous Branch of the State Legislature.” [italics added]

So! Under our federal Constitution, those who are eligible to vote for Representatives to their State Legislature are, by definition, the ones eligible to vote for Members of the federal House of Representatives.

The 17th Amendment [ratified 1913] provided that those who were eligible to vote for Representatives to the US House would also be eligible to vote for the US Senators.

With four later amendments, the States decided that they would not deny eligibility to vote to Citizens on account of race (15th Amendment), sex (19th Amendment), failure to pay taxes (24th Amendment), and for those 18 years of age or older on account of age (26th Amendment).

So the States have retained their original authority to set whatever qualifications for voting they deem appropriate, subject to their agreement (with each other) that they would not deny suffrage on account of a Citizen’s being in one of those four categories.

2. Voting fraud

But today, we all know that, due to the federal government’s long continuing refusal 3 to control immigration 4 and protect the States from Invasion,5 illegal aliens are flooding into our Country. In at least 15 States, illegals may get drivers’ licenses [link] [link]; and with California’s “motor voter law”, illegals are automatically registered to vote when they get a drivers’ license! 6

Furthermore, there are Precincts in this Country where well over 100% of the registered voters turn out to vote [link]! This Georgia Precinct had a 243% voter turnout!

Our elections are also corrupted by the “ghost voters” described in Deroy Murdock’s article [here]. Murdock shows that throughout the United States, over 3.5 million persons who don’t exist are registered to vote. For North Carolina, Murdock finds 189,721 ghost voters. Virginia has 89,979 ghost voters. But that’s a pittance compared to California which “is a veritable haunted house, teeming with 1,736,556 ghost voters.”

When you add California’s 1,736,556 ghost voters to the illegal aliens who also vote there (thanks to “Motor Voter”)7 and understand that this problem is nation-wide; who can deny that the States need to man-up and clean up their corrupt voting systems? The federal government has no constitutional authority to clean up the voting rolls; 8 but the States have the inherent and retained duty and power to do so.

By requiring photo IDs, the Citizens of North Carolina have taken a first step towards getting rid of some of those 189,721 ghosts, plus the illegals, who corrupt elections within their State.

3. The Federal Government has usurped the States’ expressly retained power to set qualifications for Voters

In 1993, Congress passed the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) [link], wherein they unlawfully seized power to dictate voter registration procedures (for federal elections) for the entire Country.

By dictating the registration procedures each State must use, and by mandating the voter registration form [the “federal form”] each State must use when registering voters; the NVRA stripped the States of their power to determine whether voters in their State meet the qualifications for voting set forth within their State Constitutions. It thus prohibits the States from enforcing the qualifications for voting set forth in their State Constitutions! 9

This is shown by what happened in Arizona:

The Constitution of the State of Arizona restricts voting to Citizens. During 2004, the People of Arizona (which had been overrun with illegal aliens) adopted an initiative (Proposition 200) which required those in Arizona who apply to register to vote, to provide documentary proof of citizenship.  But a lawsuit was filed in federal court; and the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that since the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 doesn’t require applicants for voter registration to provide documentary proof of citizenship, the States may not require it.

Thereafter, in Arizona v. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. (2013), the US Supreme Court affirmed the Ninth Circuit’s opinion [link].

I wrote about the Ninth Circuit’s opinion [here] and the Supreme Court’s opinion [here]. Both opinions are monuments to judicial incompetence – or worse. The assertions made by the Courts in their attempts to justify their unconstitutional judgments are demonstratively false. The majority opinion of the Supreme Court is also logically incoherent.

But here we are: The Supreme Court has held that since the federally mandated voter registration form doesn’t require that persons registering to vote provide proof of citizenship, the States may not require it. What this means, in practice, is that the States must register anyone who fills out the federal form.

4. So where does this leave North Carolina?

The federal voter registration form may be seen (in 15 different languages) [here].

The federal form doesn’t require applicants for registration to provide a photo ID. Therefore, consistent with Arizona v. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc., North Carolina may not require applicants for registration to provide a photo ID.

May North Carolina require voters to present a photo ID when they show up to vote? The Supreme Court hasn’t directly addressed this; 10 but consider that since the federal government requires the States to register anyone who fills out the federal form, why would the feds permit the States to deny exercise of the suffrage to any name which is “registered”?

We already know how U.S. District Judge Loretta Biggs is going to rule – and her ruling is consistent with the Supreme Court’s lawless holding in Arizona v. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc.

5. Are There any Men in North Carolina?

The 7th paragraph of our Declaration of Independence recites how the Colonists opposed with manly firmness the King’s invasions on the rights of the people.
Are there any politicians in North Carolina today who will oppose the federal government’s invasions on the rights of the Citizens of North Carolina to set and enforce requirements for voting within their State?

A State Attorney General with brains and a spine would inform the federal judge that North Carolina won’t participate in the litigation; that she may issue all the Orders and Judgments she wants – North Carolina will ignore them – because (if she obeys the Supreme Court instead of the federal and State Constitutions) her Orders and Judgments will be void as in violation of Article I, §2, clause 1, US Constitution; and as in violation of the Sovereign Rights of North Carolina to enforce their own Constitution respecting voter qualifications.

What could a federal judge do about such a principled response from North Carolina? She has no Army. She has no power to enforce her judgments. She has to depend on the Executive Branch of the Federal government to enforce her judgments.11

So we would find out whether Trump actually means it when he says he wants honest elections, or whether he is just another fake “conservative”. If he is a fake, he will send in the National Guard to enforce the Judge’s unconstitutional judgment. But if Trump lives up to his words about the need for honest elections [link]; then he will refuse to send in the National Guard to enforce the unconstitutional Judgment; and North Carolina will have won the Battle and set a noble example for other States to follow.

6. Conclusion

The Deep State which controls the federal government doesn’t want elections cleaned up – they need dirty elections to get their henchmen in office. So they have embarked upon a course of action (such as the NVRA) to try to prevent the States from cleaning up elections. So, for Heaven’s Sake! Man up and resist! Our Framers always advised the States to resist unconstitutional acts of the federal government [link] [link]! We will never get honest elections unless the States man up and reclaim their rightful authority over their own voter rolls. Do it before you lose the political power to do it.

Endnotes:

1 From 1778 to 1789, we operated under our first federal Constitution, the Articles of Confederation [link].

2 Our present federal Constitution was ratified on June 21, 1788 [link].

3 Both political parties have embraced the Globalists’ open borders policy – both parties have failed to secure our Borders.

4 Art. I, §9, cl. 1, US Constit., delegates to Congress as of January 1, 1808, the power to control immigration.

5Art. IV, §4, US Constit., requires the federal government to protect each of the States against Invasion.

6 During 2013, California passed a law which permits illegal aliens to get drivers’ licenses [link]; and during 2015, consistent with the unconstitutional National Voter Registration Act, passed “Motor Voter” providing that when one gets a drivers’ license, one is automatically registered to vote [link].

7 So with a “National Popular Vote” for President, or to ratify a new Constitution (if the mode of ratification for the new Constitution is a national referendum), it would be easy to steal the outcome! Illegal aliens and “ghost voters” in California alone would determine the outcome for the entire Country.

8 President Trump’s Executive Order 13799 of May 11, 2017, which purported to establish a “Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity” [link], is unconstitutional as outside the scope of powers delegated to the federal government.

9 Justice Thomas understands this: Until the federal government usurped power over this issue, the States always determined their own procedures for registration of those who were, pursuant to their State Constitution, qualified to vote. The function of registration of voters is so that the States may determine whether the qualifications for voting set forth in their State Constitution have been met! Justice Thomas points out in his dissent in Arizona v. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. at II. A. 2:

“This understanding of Article I, §2, is consistent with powers enjoyed by the States at the founding. For instance, ownership of real or personal property was a common prerequisite to voting … To verify that this qualification was satisfied, States might look to proof of tax payments… In other instances, States relied on personal knowledge of fellow citizens to verify voter eligibility. . . States have always had the power to ensure that only those qualified under state law to cast ballots exercised the franchise.

Perhaps in part because many requirements (such as property ownership or taxpayer status) were independently documented and verifiable, States in 1789 did not generally “register” voters . . . Over time, States replaced their informal systems for determining eligibility, with more formalized pre-voting registration regimes. . . But modern voter registration serves the same basic purpose as the practices used by States in the Colonies and early Federal Republic. The fact that States have liberalized voting qualifications and streamlined the verification process through registration does not alter the basic fact that States possess broad authority to set voter qualifications and to verify that they are met.” [italics added].

10 In the Supreme Court’s majority opinion [link], Scalia mentioned (4th para down from top) that Arizona’s Proposition 200 also required voters “to present identification when they vote on election day”; but he did not grace us with an answer as to whether States may require voters to prove that they are who they say they are when they show up to vote.

11 As Alexander Hamilton points out in Federalist No. 78, the Judicial Branch is the weakest branch. All they can do is issue orders and judgments – they can’t enforce their orders and judgments. They must rely on the Executive Branch to carry them out:

“… the judiciary… will always be the least dangerous to the political rights of the Constitution; because it will be least in a capacity to annoy or injure them. The Executive not only dispenses the honors, but holds the sword of the community. The legislature not only commands the purse, but prescribes the rules by which the duties and rights of every citizen are to be regulated. The judiciary, on the contrary, has no influence over either the sword or the purse; no direction either of the strength or of the wealth of the society; and can take no active resolution whatever. It may truly be said to have neither FORCE nor WILL, but merely judgment; and must ultimately depend upon the aid of the executive arm even for the efficacy of its judgments.” [caps are Hamilton’s; italics added]

February 27, 2020 Posted by | Arizona Lawsuit, Arizona's Proposition 200, National Voter Registration Act, Nullification, Voter eligibility, Voter Qualifications | , , , , | 20 Comments

The States Determine Qualifications for Voting and Procedures for Registration, and only Citizens may Vote

By Publius Huldah

1. Summary

The federal government is usurping the powers of the States, expressly retained by Art. I, §2, cl. 1, US Constitution, to determine qualifications for voting. And by perverting Art. I, §4, cl. 1, it is also usurping the States’ reserved power to determine procedures for registration of voters.

Consistent with Principles of Republican Government, every State in this Union has restricted voting to Citizens. 1 But on October 26, 2010 in Gonzales v. Arizona, a three judge panel on the US Circuit Court of Appeals (9th Cir.) construed the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA) and asserted that Arizona has no right to require applicants for voter registration to provide proof of citizenship. I wrote about it at the time HERE. On rehearing, the en banc Court of Appeals agreed with the panel; and on June 17, 2013, in Arizona v. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc., the Supreme Court affirmed.

A few months thereafter, California passed a law which permits illegal aliens to get drivers’ licenses; and during 2015, consistent with the unconstitutional NVRA, passed “Motor Voter” providing that when one gets a drivers’ license, one is automatically registered to vote. 2

The federal government is unlawfully mandating that illegal aliens be allowed to vote in our elections.

2. The Concept of “Citizenship”

Emer de Vattel’s The Law of Nations was a Godsend to our Framing Generation because it provided the new concepts our Framers needed to transform us from subjects of a Monarchy to Citizens of a Republic.3 Book I, Ch. XIX, defines “citizens”, “inhabitants” and “naturalization”:

· “Citizens” are the members of the civil society who are bound to it by certain duties, subject to its authority, participate in its advantages and in the rights of citizens [§212].

· “Inhabitants” are foreigners who are permitted to settle in the country and are subject to its laws, but do not participate in all the rights of citizens [§213].

· “Naturalization” is the process whereby the country grants to a foreigner the quality of citizen, by admitting him into the body of the political society [§214].

So “citizens” have civic advantages and political rights which are not extended to “inhabitants” – and certainly not to aliens who have unlawfully entered a country.4

Accordingly, our Constitution permits only Citizens to serve in Congress (Art. I, §2, cl. 2 & §3, cl. 3); the President must be a “natural born Citizen” (Art. II, §1, cl. 5); Article IV, §2, cl. 1 & §1 of the 14th Amendment refer to the “privileges and immunities of citizens”; and the 15th, 19th, 24th, and 26th Amendments5 refer to voting by “Citizens”.

3. The Federalist Papers show that voting is a privilege of Citizens alone

The slaves in America were “inhabitants”, not “citizens”. They weren’t allowed to vote. Federalist No. 54 (5th para from bottom) tells us:

“…The qualifications on which the right of suffrage depend are not…the same… [in the several States]. In some of the States the difference is very material. In every State, a certain proportion of inhabitants are deprived of this right by the constitution of the State, who will be included in the census by which the federal Constitution apportions the representatives… the Southern States might… [insist]…that the slaves, as inhabitants, should have been admitted into the census according to their full number, in like manner with other inhabitants, who, by the policy of other States, are not admitted to all the rights of citizens…” [boldface added]6

In Federalist No. 60 (1st, 2nd and last paras), Hamilton speaks of the “fundamental privilege” of citizens to vote, and that citizens who are conscious and tenacious of their rights would flock to the places of election to overthrow tyrants. In Federalist No. 61 (2nd para), Hamilton speaks of “the suffrages of the citizens”, and of voting as an “invaluable privilege”.

Over and over, The Federalist Papers show that voting is restricted to citizens:

“In republics, persons elevated from the mass of the community, by the suffragees of their fellow-citizens, to stations of great pre-eminence and power…” (No. 22, 6th para from bottom)

“If we consider the situation of the men on whom the free suffrages of their fellow-citizens may confer the representative trust, we shall find it involving every security which can be devised or desired for their fidelity to their constituents (No. 57, 7th para) … “… that each representative of the United States will be elected by five or six thousand citizens…” (No. 57, 7th para from bottom)

“There is a peculiarity in the federal Constitution which insures a watchful attention in a majority both of the people and of their representatives to a constitutional augmentation of the latter. The peculiarity lies in this, that one branch of the legislature is a representation of citizens, the other of the States…” (No. 58 at 3.)

“…A small number of persons, selected by their fellow-citizens from the general mass, will be most likely to possess the information and discernment requisite to such complicated investigations …” No. 68 (3rd para)

4. Webster’s 1828 Dictionary shows our Founding Generation saw voting as restricted to citizens

Suffrage is:

“1. A vote; a voice given in deciding a controverted question, or in the choice of a man for an office or trust. Nothing can be more grateful to a good man than to be elevated to office by the unbiased suffrages of free enlightened citizens.”

Citizen is:

“5. In the United States, a person, native7 or naturalized, who has the privilege of exercising the elective franchise…”

Franchise is:

“1. … the right to vote for governor, senators and representatives, is a franchise belonging to citizens, and not enjoyed by aliens…”

Inhabitants and aliens may not vote unless they become naturalized citizens and meet whatever additional qualifications for voting are set forth in the State Constitution. Naturalization is:

“The act of investing an alien with the rights and privileges of a native subject or citizen. naturalization in Great Britain is only by act of parliament. In the United States, it is by act of Congress, 8 vesting certain tribunals with the power.”

5. State Constitutions set forth the Qualifications for Voting

When we operated under the Articles of Confederation (our first federal Constitution),9 the States determined the qualifications for voting in state and local elections and in elections to the Continental Congress. These qualifications were set forth in the State Constitutions, and varied from State to State.

In our federal Constitution of 1787, the States expressly retained (at Art. I, §2, cl.1) their pre-existing power to determine the qualifications of voters; and ordained that those whom they determined were qualified to vote in elections to their State House of Representatives would thereby be qualified to vote for their federal Representatives to Congress.

Our Framers specifically rejected the idea that the new Congress or the State Legislatures would determine who was eligible to vote. Instead, only The People of each State were competent to define the right of suffrage for their State, and their definition was enshrined in their State Constitution. In Federalist No. 52 (2nd para), James Madison tells us:

“…The definition of the right of suffrage is very justly regarded as a fundamental article of republican government.10 It was incumbent on the convention, therefore, to define and establish this right in the Constitution. To have left it open for the occasional regulation of the Congress, would have been improper … To have submitted it to the legislative discretion of the States, would have been improper … To have reduced the different qualifications in the different States to one uniform rule, would probably have been as dissatisfactory to some of the States as it would have been difficult to the convention. The provision made by the convention … must be satisfactory to every State, because it is conformable to the standard already established, or which may be established, by the State itself. It will be safe to the United States, because, being fixed by the State constitutions, it is not alterable by the State governments…”[boldface added]

Remember! Since the federal and state governments are merely “creatures” of constitutions, they have no power to determine who may vote. That power belongs to the “creators” of the governments. Only The People are competent to set the qualifications for voting; and our determinations are enshrined in our State Constitutions.

6. The States reserved power to determine procedures for voter registration

Our Constitution of 1787 created a federal government to which we delegated only “few and defined” powers [see chart]. Nowhere in the Constitution did we delegate to the federal government power to dictate procedures States must use in registering voters. Accordingly, it is a “reserved” power.11 Until the federal government usurped power over this issue, the States always determined their own procedures for registration. Justice Thomas wrote in his dissent  in Arizona v. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. [at II. A. 2]:

“This understanding of Article I, §2, is consistent with powers enjoyed by the States at the founding. For instance, ownership of real or personal property was a common prerequisite to voting … To verify that this qualification was satisfied, States might look to proof of tax payments… In other instances, States relied on personal knowledge of fellow citizens to verify voter eligibility. . . States have always had the power to ensure that only those qualified under state law to cast ballots exercised the franchise.

Perhaps in part because many requirements (such as property ownership or taxpayer status) were independently documented and verifiable, States in 1789 did not generally “register” voters . . . Over time, States replaced their informal systems for determining eligibility, with more formalized pre-voting registration regimes. . . But modern voter registration serves the same basic purpose as the practices used by States in the Colonies and early Federal Republic. The fact that States have liberalized voting qualifications and streamlined the verification process through registration does not alter the basic fact that States possess broad authority to set voter qualifications and to verify that they are met.”

7. The federal government has usurped the States’ powers to determine who may vote and determine procedures for voter registration

The National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA) purports to require States to “accept and use” a federal voter registration form! The Ninth Circuit asserted that since the federal form doesn’t require applicants to provide documentary proof of citizenship, the States may not require it. This paper exposes some of the false arguments made by the Ninth Circuit’s three judge panel, and sets forth what Hamilton and Madison actually said as to the genuine meanings of Art. I, §2, cl. 1 and §4, cl.1: Arizona’s Proposition 200: What The Constitution Really Says About Voter Qualifications & Exposing The “Elections Clause” Argument.

But the Supreme Court affirmed the Ninth Circuit. Justice Scalia, who wrote the majority opinion, swept Art. I, §2, cl. 1 under the rug and ignored Hamilton’s and Madison’s explanations of Art. I, §4, cl. 1.  Scalia asserted:

“The Clause’s [Art. I, §4, cl. 1] substantive scope is broad. “Times, Places, and Manner,” we have written, are “comprehensive words,” which “embrace authority to provide a complete code for congressional elections,” including, as relevant here and as petitioners do not contest, regulations relating to “registration”….” 12

Scalia said,

“…the NVRA forbids States to demand that an applicant submit additional information beyond that required by the Federal Form…”

and concluded,

“… the fairest reading of the statute is that a state-imposed requirement of evidence of citizenship not required by the Federal Form is “inconsistent with” the NVRA’s mandate that States “accept and use” the Federal Form…”

IF Scalia understood that the NVRA was unconstitutional, it was his DUTY to say so even though Counsel for the State of Arizona apparently failed to raise the issue.

So what should we do when federal courts  – as here – issue unconstitutional opinions?

8. Our Framers said nullification is the natural right, which all admit to be a remedy against insupportable oppression

The federal government has refused to control our borders and, as a result, we are being invaded. The federal government is demanding that invaders be allowed to vote in our elections. We have no obligation to obey unconstitutional dictates of the federal government. See Nullification: The Original Right of Self-Defense. What does your State Constitution say about qualifications for voting? Demand that your State government enforce your State Constitution.

And Remember! As Hamilton told us in Federalist No. 78 (6th para), federal courts can only issue judgments – they must rely on the Executive Branch to enforce them. So the President’s “check” on usurping federal judges is to refuse to enforce their opinions. States must man up and obey the Constitution instead of unconstitutional dictates of the federal Legislative and Judicial Branches. Do you think that President Trump will send out US Marshalls or the National Guard to FORCE States to allow illegal aliens to vote? The iron is hot – the time to strike is now.

Endnotes:

1Justice Alito’s dissenting opinion in Arizona v. The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. says (2nd para):

“…Exercising its right to set federal voter qualifications, Arizona, like every other State, permits only U. S. citizens to vote in federal elections, and Arizona has concluded that this requirement cannot be effectively enforced unless applicants for registration are required to provide proof of citizenship…” [boldface added]

2 The California legislature thus violated Article II, Section 2, California Constitution which says, “A United States citizen 18 years of age and resident in this State may vote.”

3That Vattel had such influence is proved HERE.

4All men everywhere possess the rights God gave them. But in a civil society, the members possess political or civic rights which are not extended to inhabitants, lawful visitors, or illegal alien invaders.

5 With these four Amendments, the States agreed they would not deny suffrage to Citizens on account of race, being a female, not paying the tax, or being between 18 to 21 years of age. States retain power to deny suffrage to any Citizen on account of other factors (e.g., illiteracy, being on welfare, or stupidity).

6 Freed slaves were naturalized by §1 of the 14th Amendment.

7Vattel §212: “The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens.” [See §§ 215-217 for other places babies may be born as natural-born citizens.]

8Art. I, §8, cl. 4, US Const.

9 The Articles of Confederation were ratified July 9, 1778.

10A “republic” is a state in which the exercise of the sovereign power is lodged in representatives elected by the people.

11The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution … are reserved to the States, respectively, or to the people.” (10th Amendment) [italics added]

12 Counsel for the State of Arizona made a major strategic error in [apparently] failing to challenge the constitutionality of the NVRA as outside the scope of powers granted to Congress and as in violation of Art. I, §2, cl. 1 and §4, cl.1, US Const. 

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August 16, 2018 Posted by | Arizona's Proposition 200, Article I, Sec. 2, Elections Clause, National Voter Registration Act, Voter eligibility, Voter Qualifications | , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

   

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