South Carolina elections are unconstitutional? How could that be? Surely, no one in our government would conduct any election which violated the Constitution, and if any scheme threatened to undermine the very foundation of our government, our power to elect our leaders, the press would expose it, wouldn’t it?
After all, our government was founded upon the principle that all of its actions must comply with the Constitution. In fact, Article VI of the Constitution of South Carolina requires all of the State’s officers to swear an oath to "preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of this State and of the United States." So, they would probably at least read it before enacting any new law, right?
Well, you would think so, but as most people now realize, far too many in power in our government believe that they are the law. I’ve had judges tell me that, but I’ll save judicial arrogance and lack of respect for the law and the facts for another day.
Of course, other government leaders may just think that if someone else in government has proposed something, then it must be Constitutional because of course, they would have checked that before proposing a new law or program. Besides, there is so much important work to do in the halls of government that there isn’t time to go reading everything and the Constitutions all of the time. After all, there are lunches, dinners, press conferences, and fundraisers to attend.
Whether it is because some think that they can ignore the law because they are above it or whether some don’t bother to read the law because they just assume that the one who proposed it did, a lack of respect for the law causes serious problems. John Locke said that without respect for the law, there is tyranny. We all understand that when the law is not applied equally, it is unfair, unjust. Obviously, when the Constitution is ignored, fundamental rights get trampled.
Our Founders understood that people would not devote time, effort, and resources to productive endeavors if the fruits of their labors could be taken from them at the whim of someone with power. They understood that any government which allowed its leaders to ignore the law, change the law at their whim, or trample fundamental rights harmed everyone and put everyone at risk. They risked their lives and fortunes in order to throw off the burdens of a government that could and did ignore their fundamental rights.
Our Founders understood that the people had the power to abolish any government which acted in a manner which harmed the public welfare, and they endeavored to give us a peaceful means of controlling our government. To prevent tyranny and the violence of oppressions and revolutions which flow from it, they designed a system of checks and balances which includes the three branches of government, the press, and the public through elections, the right to assemble, the right to freedom of speech, the right to petition for a redress of grievances both civil and criminal in nature, and through service on both trial juries and on grand juries.
In order to help guard against abuses of power, elections were required to be held on a regular basis. Of course, great care was taken to protect the power of the people to control their government through elections. Our Founders understood that without frequent and reliable elections, a government of and for the people would not endure for long. They understood tyranny, oppression, and revolution, and they wanted to protect their children and grand-children from such horrors.
They took care to make sure that our power to control our government through elections was protected from fraud and undue influence. They required that the polls be open to observers and that the ballots be collected, stored, and counted in public in order to minimize the chance that an election might be stolen. They understood the need to protect the integrity of elections long before Joseph Stalin said, "Those who cast the votes decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything."
So, how could it be that the government of the great State of South Carolina, one of the original States, would institute any system of elections which would violate fundamental principles? Wouldn’t the press raise an alarm if an election system was proposed which violated the Constitution?
The people wouldn’t stand for anything that would undermine their most fundamental right to control their government, or would they? If the vast majority of the people didn’t know what was going on because the press was controlled by a small cartel which chose to divert their attention away from changes which threatened to undermine their fundamental rights, would an alert minority be able to protect against erosion of our control over our government?
If very few people even understood our own history or studied our Constitutions because they were educated in a system which lacked any real competition, would an alert minority even exist? If so, would it be so small that it could not alert and educate the masses in time to protect our fundamental right to control our own government? Would it be able to overcome the beliefs, the assurances, and the illusion that our leaders are working to spread democracy, that we have an ability to control them, and that they are fighting for our votes?
Certainly, those people in our government are good, honest Americans, aren’t they? Those people on TV who bring us the news wouldn’t keep us in the dark, would they? Those people in the press have to search for news about movie stars and even bake sales. Certainly, they would want to tell us if someone were taking away our fundamental right to elect our leaders, wouldn’t they?
Well, for a very long time, I also thought so, and until Friday, January 11, 2008, at about 4:00 PM, I would have said that it was unlikely that the government of South Carolina would implement a plan to conduct its elections which blatantly violated its Constitution. I said unlikely because I have handled more election contests than any other attorney or former attorney that I know of, and I have first hand experience with proof that the official results of elections in Florida are false, as in not true. This means that these elections were most likely fixed, fraudulent, stolen. Of course, the votes were counted in secret.
Unfortunately, I know that for far too many judges who sit in our courts, the law and the facts mean nothing. The evidence we gathered meant nothing because the Florida state court dismissed the Congressional election contests saying it did not have jurisdiction even though a United States Supreme Court case said that a state court does have jurisdiction to entertain an action for a recount. I know that nine members of Congress who serve on the House Committee on Administration were willing to ignore the law and the facts in order to cover up for election fraud in Florida. I wonder if the voters in their districts know that they don’t care about respecting the will of the voters.
On Friday afternoon, I got a call from a concerned person in South Carolina. She told me that the upcoming Presidential primary would be conducted on touch screen voting machines and that she was worried that votes may not be counted accurately, or even worse, that votes may be stolen. That’s right, stolen. Many are worried about our elections being stolen. In fact, a Zogby poll from August of 2006 indicates that 92% of Americans are worried about our votes being counted in secret. The link is below.