Letter: States have right to secede from nation, he says
TO THE EDITOR: When responding to a recent petition to "peacefully secede," signed by 127,000 Texans, the Obama administration quoted from a speech by President Lincoln, who quoted Andrew Jackson, who quoted Daniel Webster.
Their response was we exist in "a perpetual union" so Texas has no right to secede. Has the president, a "Constitutional scholar and Ivy League professor," been afflicted by amnesia?
Although the Articles of Confederation, which preceded the Constitution, called the union "perpetual," neither the Constitution, nor any writings by the framers and signers, contain "perpetual union." Why would this administration refer to a speech, from almost a century after ratification of the Constitution, instead of referring to the law itself? They have an agenda which breeches constitutional limitation, designed to preserve our individual freedom.
Article VII proclaimed "The ratification of the conventions of nine states shall be sufficient for the establishment of this Constitution between the States so ratifying the same." The Constitution agreed to by the delegates in Philadelphia and the ratifiers in each of the States was a "Constitution" (contract, agreement, or compact) "between the States so ratifying the same." It was not a Constitution among the people, but a limited compact between the States and federal government.
Contract law is a body of law as old as the Anglo-American division of law and equity. If two parties enter into a contract, whereby each party agrees to perform a particular task, and one of the parties fails to perform as promised, or breaches the contract, the other party may seek certain remedies Anglo-American law has historically provided.
One of those remedies, to a breach of contract, is "rescission "or annulment of the contract. The States have the right to nullify bad Federal legislation and to rescind a breeched contract, which is the Constitution, and secede from the union.