Natelson:  State Legislators Have Abdicated Responsibilities

By Stuart MacPhail – January, 2021

On December 21 The Epoch Times carried a commentary by law professor Rob Natelson entitled State Legislators are Central to Our Constitutional System – So Why Didn’t They Act to Resolve the 2020 Election?

Natelson, a constitutional expert who usually focuses on Article V issues, uses this piece to underscore the broader responsibilities of state legislators relative to federal functions.  He describes “[a] pattern of state legislative abdication [that] has prevailed for more than a century.”

He says, “As the federal leviathan grew relentlessly at the expense of states, state legislatures rarely rebelled – and when they did, they rarely persisted sufficiently to accomplish much.”  He adds, “It is contrary to how we expect politicians to act.”

Natelson contends that “many lawmakers, like other members of the public, are unaware that the Constitution places them near the center of our political system.”

The professor concludes by saying, “Obviously, smooth operation of our constitutional system requires lawmakers who understand their role in our political system.  Perhaps more constitutional education will be one result of this sad election.”  Read his important piece HERE.

Election Integrity is now a Major National Issue –
Concerns about American election integrity have taken center stage in the minds of a very high percentage of US citizens.  With the exception of COVID19-related news, America’s dysfunctional federal election system currently beats all other issues (federal fiscal irresponsibility, excessive terms by members of Congress, etc.) that might be addressed by constitutional amendments.

“Americans need election results they can trust.  That’s why The Heritage Foundation has made the issue of election integrity one of its top priorities,” proclaims a recent article published by Heritage.  Read the article HERE.

Heritage maintains an Election Fraud Database that showcases 1,298 instances of voter fraud from 47 states.  Heritage added over 50 cases to the database in 2020.  The database saw a huge surge in online traffic (more than 1,000%) in the days after Nov. 3 as the American people searched for factual information on the impact of fraud and irregularities in elections.  Find the database HERE.

Meanwhile The Patriot Post published a guest commentary by Paul S. Gardiner that stressed that it is not only fraud that is disrupting America’s democratic franchise; it is also irrational inconsistencies in voting standards.  He advocates for the establishment of “uniform, nationwide voting rules for national elections.”

Gardiner recommends that an amendment to the US Constitution, applicable to all 50 states, be drafted, proposed and ratified.  Among the “rules” such a constitutional amendment could include, Gardiner suggests: 1) In order to be counted as a legal ballot, all ballots must be cast and received by close of business on election day.  2) Absentee ballots, requested by registered voters, are the only mail-in ballots allowed.  3) With the exception of absentee ballots, all voting must be accomplished in person at prescribed polling stations.  4) Early in-person voting is allowed at prescribed polling stations up to 14 days prior to election day.”

Might Congress propose an election rules amendment to the Constitution?  Recent history of rancor among their ranks does not bode well for such a possibility.

Mr. Gardiner’s article goes on to document the improbability of an Article V convention of states as the source of such a constitutional remedy for election ills, principally due to the strong division between Article V groups.  He argues that “it is truly time to put aside differences and strive for strong unity of effort among the different Article V groups.”  Read his commentary HERE.

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