"I don't think we should entrust governing our society to five unelected lawyers in Washington. Why would you possibly hand over the rights of 320 million Americans to five lawyers in Washington to say we're going to decide the rules that govern you? If you want to win an issue, go to the ballot box and win at the ballot box. That's the way the Constitution was designed." Senator Ted Cruz
In an interview with Stephen Colbert, Senator Ted Cruz expressed his distaste for the Supreme Court with the quote above. The two started talking about Ronald Reagan with Colbert asking whether Cruz would be willing to work with the other side of the aisle to accomplish things like Reagan did. Cruz replied that he never spoke with anyone who wanted him to cooperate more than he has with President Obama, which explains his ideological warfare with everything Democratic, culminating in his engineering the government shut down in 2013.
Interesting, Cruz defined his principles as: "Live within our means, stop bankrupting our kids and grandkids, follow the Constitution." Of course, then he proceeded to shred the constitution just a few moments later. When the topic veered to gay marriage Cruz expressed how the issue should be left to the states, saying: "Under the Constitution, marriage is a question for the states."
Of course, when Colbert pointed out that the constitution does not mention marriage, Cruz retorted: "And that's exactly why it's a question for the states. Because the 10th amendment says if it doesn't mention it, it's a question for the states."
It is ironic, bordering on demagogic, how Republicans pick and choose what parts of the constitution they fetishize! Cruz next desperately repeated: "I believe in democracy. I believe in democracy..." But he seems to know nothing about it.
States rights have been an issue that conservatives have championed for years in their culture war arguments. Hypocritically, they oppose the state's deciding in the case of legalizing marijuana, but regardless. Cruz seems to so readily forget how the state's rights mantra was leaned on for decades to suppress blacks and their voting rights, and to enforce segregation. Now the same oppressive voices, after losing the segregation battle, have turned to state's rights arguments again as an instrument to enforce conservative values on society in the case of gay marriage.
Cruz conveniently forgets that Section One of the 14th amendment provides for equal protection of the laws and due process. Those guiding principles were the grounds the five justices on the Supreme Court used to strike down state marriage bans. Interestingly, this is the same section of the constitution which allows for birthright citizenship, which Trump so vehemently opposes. Perhaps this language is a communist plot!
Now Cruz does not just limit himself to expressing his thought that gay marriage should be decided by individual states, in the next breath he rails against the Supreme Court itself as a body of "five unelected lawyers in Washington." He quizically asks why should we hand over our rights to them, saying issues should be decided at the ballot box. In his quest, he is like Don Quixote charging at the windmills!
Well, issues are decided at the ballot box! We democratically elect a president who then appoints judges to the Supreme Court when a vacancy opens with the retirement of a sitting judge. Of course, the president selects someone he believes comports with his own philosophy. There are sometimes surprises as in the case of Justice Souter who was selected by the first President Bush and then came to vote reliably with the court's liberal members.
Does Cruz want to eliminate the Supreme Court? I mean, just where does his radical thinking lead? On the one hand, he wants to "follow the constitution," while on the other, his beliefs are diametrically opposed to Article Three of the constitution establishing the Supreme Court as the supreme law of the land. Conservatives, such as Cruz, just fundamentally reject the principle of judicial supremacy, but fortunately, this doctrine protects us from conservative tyranny.