Confederates advocating secession via the US Constitution

OpnCoronet

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Indeed it is, but note that the court rejected sovereignty at a very early date-1796.
Founding Fathers differed in views of the Constitution.
Also of interest is 2 of the lawyers for the creditors: Patrick Henry, John Marshall. Marshall went on to
Marbury v. Madison fame.



A very significant point, not often discussed directly, was the seeming lack of unanimity among Americans of all political stripe, even at the very beginnings of the Union.
Unlike the New Englanders of an earlier time(War of 1812) the southern secessionists did not view the lack of a clear consensus, in or out of gov't, as a warning sign to go slow on its implementation.
Ironically, their(secessionists) act of trying to impose their interpretation on the United States, allowed Lincoln to impose his own.


P.S. when I mention Lincoln I do not mean to infer that it was his interpretation alone, merely that a consensus(from various interpretations of that time, including Lincoln) resulted from the winning of the CW by the Union.
 

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jgoodguy

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A very significant point, not often discussed directly, was the seeming lack of unanimity among Americans of all political stripe, even at the very beginnings of the Union.
Unlike the New Englanders of an earlier time(War of 1812) the southern secessionists did not view the lack of a clear consensus, in or out of gov't, as a warning sign to go slow on its implementation.
Ironically, their(secessionists) act of trying to impose their interpretation on the United States, allowed Lincoln to impose his own.


P.S. when I mention Lincoln I do not mean to infer that it was his interpretation alone, merely that a consensus(from various interpretations of that time, including Lincoln) resulted from the winning of the CW by the Union.
1. The lack of unanimity is the death knell of trying to divine original intention from the entrails of the American Revolution and Constitutional Convention.
2. If I had been in charge of secessionist Agitprop, I'd use their arguments in a heartbeat. If one is a patriotic Southern nationalist wanting a homeland for the oppressed South, it is a good motivator. Southern honor will limit fact checking and duels will take care of the rest.
3. IMHO secession was so ingrained in the Southern Political mind, that it will take a war to dislodge it in 1860-61.
4. A nationalist viewpoint was evident in the decisions of the SCOTUS and acts of Congress from the convention onward. Like the secessionist viewpoint, it would take a war to dislodge it in 1860-61.
5. We know which side won.
 

OpnCoronet

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1. The lack of unanimity is the death knell of trying to divine original intention from the entrails of the American Revolution and Constitutional Convention.
2. If I had been in charge of secessionist Agitprop, I'd use their arguments in a heartbeat. If one is a patriotic Southern nationalist wanting a homeland for the oppressed South, it is a good motivator. Southern honor will limit fact checking and duels will take care of the rest.
3. IMHO secession was so ingrained in the Southern Political mind, that it will take a war to dislodge it in 1860-61.
4. A nationalist viewpoint was evident in the decisions of the SCOTUS and acts of Congress from the convention onward. Like the secessionist viewpoint, it would take a war to dislodge it in 1860-61.
5. We know which side won.



I too, believe that given the determination to secede in defense of a perceived direct threat to the very existence of southern culture and economy, etc., that the secessionists made the best case available at the time(And that not only was secession right(legal or not) it was, in fact, necessary).
 

48th Miss.

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Regarding the 10th, one more time
The 10th

From the constitution.


The power of determining the government of a State was delegated to the United States by the Constitution. Therefore there is no enumerated right to secession.
Seems to me they determined the type of Government the States shall have and any State being formed there after. They shall all be Republic in nature.

Enumerated powers were those we the people gave to the Federal Government thus retaining anything that was not enumerated to them. IMHO.

Thanks for the quotes. This is an intriguing thread.

We can also assume since all branches are equal the SCOTUS ruling is just opinion and not necessarily a proper reading of the Constitution.
 

jgoodguy

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Seems to me they determined the type of Government the States shall have and any State being formed there after. They shall all be Republic in nature.

Enumerated powers were those we the people gave to the Federal Government thus retaining anything that was not enumerated to them. IMHO.

Thanks for the quotes. This is an intriguing thread.

We can also assume since all branches are equal the SCOTUS ruling is just opinion and not necessarily a proper reading of the Constitution.
  • We the people gave to the United States the enumerated power to determine the type of State Government.
  • If an entity is unable to determine its government, it is not fully sovereign.
  • Without full sovereignty, a State cannot secede.
  • Without the ability to determine its type of government, a State cannot secede.
  • Therefore there is no path to secession via the 10th amendment asserting some unenumerated power.
 
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48th Miss.

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  • We the people gave to the United States the enumerated power to determine the type of State Government.
  • If an entity is unable to determine its government, it is not fully sovereign.
  • Without full sovereignty, a State cannot secede.
  • Without the ability to determine its type of government, a State cannot secede.
  • Therefore there is no path to secession via the 10th amendment asserting some unenumerated power.
Been gone, thanks for the bullet points. I see your logic but am not sure the logic tracks in my world of understanding. I have made a screen shot of this and will mull it over. At first glance I would say We the people formed a Government and gave the enumerated powers to that Federal Government to secure the rights and freedoms of the People and the States they reside in. One such power was to ensure that each New State would be created as the existing States, that is as a Republican form of government.

I dont believe the States had total sovereignty as they also had limits under the Constitution. But i am not sure that total soveriegnty is required to have the right to seceed. Certainly i trail most all of you in this matter and will keep reading. Thanks

Hope this post makes sense. Its late
 
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The Constitution also starts out saying " In Order To Form A More Perfect Union" which begs the question more perfect then what? Well go back to the Articles of Confederation which ,I think, in Section 13 states that the Union is Perpetual. In fact the name of the document is 'Articles of Confederation And Perpetual Union" . In today's world we always hear about "original intent" of our founding fathers and researchers endevour to look into their writings so IMHO looking into how they evolved from the Continental Congress through to the Constitution of 1787 one can also apply original intent.

JMHO though...
 

jgoodguy

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The Constitution also starts out saying " In Order To Form A More Perfect Union" which begs the question more perfect then what? Well go back to the Articles of Confederation which ,I think, in Section 13 states that the Union is Perpetual. In fact the name of the document is 'Articles of Confederation And Perpetual Union" . In today's world we always hear about "original intent" of our founding fathers and researchers endevour to look into their writings so IMHO looking into how they evolved from the Continental Congress through to the Constitution of 1787 one can also apply original intent.

JMHO though...
One thing for sure they were fed up with State Sovereignty and Independence.
 

jgoodguy

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e
Been gone, thanks for the bullet points. I see your logic but am not sure the logic tracks in my world of understanding. I have made a screen shot of this and will mull it over. At first glance I would say We the people formed a Government and gave the enumerated powers to that Federal Government to secure the rights and freedoms of the People and the States they reside in. One such power was to ensure that each New State would be created as the existing States, that is as a Republican form of government.

I dont believe the States had total sovereignty as they also had limits under the Constitution. But i am not sure that total soveriegnty is required to have the right to seceed. Certainly i trail most all of you in this matter and will keep reading. Thanks

Hope this post makes sense. Its late
Sovereignty is like pregnancy , either it is or it ain't. Once an entity gives up its army and navy, it is no longer sovereign, no matter what it claims. A confederation of sovereigns like the allies in WWII may put their armies under a common command, but they remain national armies. The sovereign right to determine one's government is as basic to sovereignty as it gets.

Which was Lincoln's argument, there was no secession of States only illegal, disloyal governments. Send in the military and end of story.
 

jgoodguy

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IMHO the evidence is that the secessionists used out side of Constitution Calhoun's Compact theory for their ideology. Getting to session though the 10th does not seem to have been used much if any.
 

48th Miss.

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Very true. the US Constitution was all about empowering the Federal government.
Empowering with limited power, enumerated power not absolute power.

All written Constitutions limit power.

No offense but this statement is the crux of all that is wrong in the interpretations of how our Government is to work, IMHO. This is why this discussion will never end or be settled. Regardless of whether they used the 10th or not the Constitution itself is silent on Secession. So in that regard we can say, as so many have, that the CW settled the issue but only until a next time, if it occurs. War or consensus can settle it, Courts, not really or truly since all they have is Opinion.
 
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Empowering with limited power, enumerated power not absolute power.

All written Constitutions limit power.

No offense but your statement is the crux of all that is wrong then and now in how the our Government is to work, IMHO. This is why this discussion will never end or be settled. Regardless of whether they used the 10th or not the Constitution itself is silent on Secession. So in that regard we can say, as so many have, that the CW settled the issue but only until a next time, if it occurs. War of consensus can settle it, Courts, not really or truly since all they have is Opinion.
The problem is that the federal government only had enumerated powers. In fact, the delegates specifically rejected the notion that the federal government only had powers where enumerated.

Ryan
 

jgoodguy

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Empowering with limited power, enumerated power not absolute power.

All written Constitutions limit power.

No offense but your statement is the crux of all that is wrong then and now in how the our Government is to work, IMHO. This is why this discussion will never end or be settled. Regardless of whether they used the 10th or not the Constitution itself is silent on Secession. So in that regard we can say, as so many have, that the CW settled the issue but only until a next time, if it occurs. War of consensus can settle it, Courts, not really or truly since all they have is Opinion.
No modern politics, please.
 

jgoodguy

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One view of the tenth is that the right of secession, if there is any belongs to the people of the United States. Anyone making a claim that it exclusively belongs to the States needs to make an explicit case that is the only interpretation.

The text of the Tenth Amendment is very short and says the following: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
 

ivanj05

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One view of the tenth is that the right of secession, if there is any belongs to the people of the United States. Anyone making a claim that it exclusively belongs to the States needs to make an explicit case that is the only interpretation.
One may also need to make an explicit case that it belonged to the people of an individual state, rather than to the people collectively.
 

jgoodguy

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What is the 'right' interpretation of the Tenth?. Like interpretations of plays on a football field belong to the referees, interpretations of the Cnstitution are the providence of the SCOTUS because someone decides. Like refs sometimes miss stuff, SCOTUS misses stuff. The point is someone has to make a decision or all is chaos.

Yes the make up of the court is uncomfortably politically determined , but the solution is what the free soil anti slavery Republicans did in 1860, elect a like minded president.
 



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