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HISTORICAL QUOTE OF THE WEEK - "Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other." ABRAHAM LINCOLN

Sunday, November 04, 2007

IS A WOMAN PRESIDENT UNCONSTITUTIONAL ? - THE SUNDAY COMMENTARY

I am by no means a Constitutional scholar. But as a citizen of The United States I do believe it is our personal responsibility to know and understand the Constitution because it is the foundation of our country and the definer of our laws, rights and government. This post is intended to spark thoughts and comments based upon the readers view of the Constitution. It by no means is a interpretation of our Constitution but a thought for discussion only. To women readers, this is not a sexist thought but only a view for discussions sake.

For the first time in our history we are facing the possibility of a women becoming President of The United States. From a personal stand point the gender of the candidate for President is not something that troubles me. In fact if a women or a man stand for the values and have the same political ideology as I, it is upon that bases alone that I would consider them as worthy of my vote and not their gender.

I disagree with everything that the current female candidate for President believes, that is when she actually takes a stand and does no waffle according to the political winds, which is not very often. The question that I raise about the Constitutionality of a women becoming President is not based on my dislike of Senator Clinton but only in looking at the Constitution as an originalist who believes that the Constitution is THE foundational principle of our nation and as such does not bend or give to sociatal whims or liberal interpretation and can ONLY be adapted to the same through the ponderous process of amendments.

The Constitution as written, which is also how as an originalist I believe it should be interpreted, is gender neutral. Meaning that throughout this tremendous founding document when reference is made to people it is without reference to the gender, with one very distinctive exception. Article II which defines the Executive Branch or the office of the President is NOT gender neutral but in every instance throughout the definition of the responsibilities and powers of the President, the Constitution refers to the President as HE, HIM or HIS.

In the first Article which deals with the Legislative Branch all referals are either as Representative, Senator or the pronouns they and them. Never once is gender stated. Article III, the Judicial Branch is similar except that the title Judge is used along with the same pronouns.

In every definition of the office of President, the holder of that office is refered to as a HE. For example Section 1. " The Executive Power shall be vested in a President of The United States of America. HE shall hold HIS office during a term of four years....."

Concerning the oath of Office - " Before HE enter on the Execution of HIS office HE shall take the following Oath or Affirmation: - I do solemnly swear...."

These are but two of numerous examples from Article two where the President is referred to as HE or HIS. Now one may argue at this point that referring to the President as HE was a custom of the time since in the eighteenth century men were much more dominant than women who were not allowed to hold public office or responsibility. While this is true, if custom were the reason for the President referred to as HE then why were Judges, Representatives and Senators not written into the Constitution in like manner ?

Additionally if this were based on custom then why was it necessary to amend the Constitution to allow women to vote ? After all the same custom and domination of men is the reason women could not vote. I argue here that if the reference of HE was just a custom that the need to amend the Constitution for women to vote would not have been necessary since the change in society to allow better equality for women would have made voting possible as time and society allowed.

Therefore since an amendment was necessary to allow women to vote customs of the eighteenth century are NOT the criteria for referring to the President by the male gender. One may also argue that the XX Amendment which deals with the term and the inaugural of the President and the succession of Vice President refers to the office holder as , "person." But this argument is weak since the XX Amendment is not defining the power and responsibilities of the President only the succession of office were the President die while in office.

Could it then be that the Framers of the Constitution intended for the holder of the office of President of The United States to only be a man unless otherwise amended by a vote of the Senate and the States to change the Constitution in accordance to Constitutional law ?

While I am not in the remotest sense conceding the election to Senator Clinton, it does stand to reason that if she were elected there would be a very strong case in claiming that her election was not Constitutional based on an origionalist interpretation of the Constitution and understanding how Article II differs in reference and writing in reference to the male gender from any other Article, Amendment or definition found in the Constitution.

Ken Taylor

12 Comments:

Blogger Gayle said...

I would never accuse you of being sexist, Ken.

I doubt that the use of "He" or "His" in the Constitution would ever stand up as a rational argument, though, although in Hillary's case I wish it would! The reason I don't think so is because it wasn't to many years ago that whenever referencing people in general, "He" or "His" was always used. They didn't start using "he/she" or "him/her" until much later. I think I was in my twenties. I can't give you an exact year, but it has been during my lifetime and I can assure you I wasn't around when the constitution was written... at least not to my knowledge. LOL!

One must remember that during the time the constitution was written, very few women even worked. Their place was in the home and as mother and wife, period. It was thought at first that even nurses were odd. Teaching jobs were about the only jobs that women could hold without any social consequences, and I'm not even sure that was true during the time the Constitution was written.

It's unfortunate, but we're going to just have to beat her at the polls. :)

6:58 PM, November 04, 2007  
Blogger Gayle said...

In addition, Hillary is 60, isn't she? I hope that means she's done with menopause! She's irrational enough without our country having to deal with that!

7:00 PM, November 04, 2007  
Blogger Mike's America said...

Wait a minute! We all know Hillary wears the pants in the Clinton family. Surely that qualifies her as a he.... or a he-she?

7:17 PM, November 04, 2007  
Blogger Concerned Citizen said...

Damn, and I was thinking we had her by the bal... Uhm.. Hmmm.

Well anyway I was thinking that we had her on this one.

:)

1:33 AM, November 05, 2007  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...

Ken,

I think if the Framers had intentionally NOT wanted a woman to ever run for President they would have stated it as such. But it is interesting how they reffered to He and Him.

But What Gayle said!

We are at war, and at this particular time most women would think as a mother wrather than a President durring this time of war. So I would have to say NO. Unless of Course it was Condi Rice because she understands the nature of the enemy we face.



Adding

2:22 PM, November 05, 2007  
Blogger The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

But What Gayle said!

What Marie said....and Mike.

3:51 PM, November 05, 2007  
Blogger The Liberal Lie The Conservative Truth said...

Gayle, I agree with your assesment but it does seem that te male gender is what they meant since noweher else in the Constitution a public servant or citizen is refered to by their gender.

Mike, she is the only Clinton who can KEEP their pants on.

CC - She thinks she has a huge set of you know what's, that is until she is , "ganged, " up on by men then she is the innocent woman. I doubt that Amdinijad would feel for her if she whined that he was unfair to her because she was a woman!

Marie, I tend to agree with you on this especially as detailed as they were in definitions. But it does stand out that Article two is the only place in the entire Constitution that referes to a specific gender!

3:56 PM, November 05, 2007  
Blogger The Liberal Lie The Conservative Truth said...

BTW Gayle Hillary may be passed menopause but her personality is on an eternal monthly!

Word, Is that a absolute Maybe!

3:58 PM, November 05, 2007  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...

Hillary may be past Menopause (One could only hope), But she still has mood swings, look at her in action lol

I think maybe along with the documents that arent being released we should demand a medical evaluation.

I dont think Ron Paul or Kucinich need one we all know they are jackbatty as hell.

5:48 PM, November 05, 2007  
Anonymous Seth said...

It would be good for America if this issue could somehow become legitimate SCOTUS and Congressional debates, requiring Hillary to stand down as a Presidential candidate until the matter has been resolved....in 2009. :-)

8:22 PM, November 05, 2007  
Blogger Robert (Conservative Commentary) said...

Interesting article, but unfortunately it wouldn't stand. Before the current era of political correctness where one must write he/she when referring to people, proper, formal english used "he" when refering to a generic person. It doesn't connotate any particular sex of person.

However, if this were challenege, I can see where a democratic congress and a dem U.S. Supreme Court would label the framers as "angry white men who were sexist and therefore without integrity" and then declare the U.S. Constituton unconstitutional. By bringing this lawsuit we would hasten our end by accelerating their desires.

9:54 PM, November 05, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rest in Peace, Sir.

5:03 PM, November 06, 2007  

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