The Single Greatest Threat.
Yesterday, September 17, marked 230 years since the signing of the US Constitution. More than two centuries later, our nation’s founding document remains among the most consequential texts ever written. The Constitution not only delineated our most fundamental freedoms; it also laid the groundwork for the most successful republic the world has ever seen.
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It’s no wonder, then, that our allies have long looked to American government as a model of freedom and functionality. Indeed, our Constitution gave rise to a slew of imitators in countries across the world, but none has ever achieved the same success.
Consider the facts: More than 200 nation-states have produced more than 900 constitutions, but the average life expectancy of each constitution is only 19 years. Meanwhile, the Constitution of the United States endures, and today, stands apart as the oldest operative national charter on the planet.
To ensure that our Constitution continues to endure, we must pass on to the next generation a proper understanding of what the Constitution is—and why it is worth preserving.
The Constitution is the law that the people use to govern government. It grants certain powers to government and sets limits on those powers. It is how the people remain, as one Founding Father said, “masters of the government.”
But today, there is a war waging in our courtrooms over the essential meaning of the Constitution—and the outcome of this conflict will determine whether we remain masters of the government or if the government becomes master of the people.
Fighting this battle are two very different kinds of judges. One kind knows that judges must be governed by the Constitution; the other kind seeks to govern the Constitution. This choice, between judges who know the Constitution belongs to the people and judges who believe it belongs to them, determines our liberty and the kind of country in which we exercise it.
Activist judges who overstep their bounds seek to control our freedom and remake the Constitution in their image. The fruit of their labors is an alarmingly powerful federal government, unrestricted abortion, and restricted religious freedom. The people chose none of these disastrous paths—judges did.
The previous President appointed judges who, he said, would decide cases based on their “deepest values…core concerns…[and their] broader perspectives on how the world works.” According to his view, the judge—not the law—decides the outcome of cases.
Unlike our previous President, I believe in the rule of law—not the rule of judges. That’s why I was so pleased with the appointment of Justice Neil Gorsuch, a practiced and principled jurist who understands that the judge’s role is to say what the law is, not what he thinks it should be.
When Utahns first elected me to office, I swore a solemn oath to “support and defend the Constitution.” Central to that promise is confirming judges, like Neil Gorsuch, who will protect the Constitution at all costs. As your Senator, I will never waver in my commitment to defending our most basic freedoms by fighting for judges who understand their proper role under our Constitution.