Jacob Sullum, senior editor at Reason, takes Rick Perry to task for wanting to amend the U.S. Constitution:
It soon became clear that Perry, who wrote a book championing federalism, does not really believe in the 10th Amendment. In a July 28 interview, he assured Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, that he supports amending the Constitution to declare that “marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman.” So much for letting states define marriage as they see fit.
[. . .]
Two days later, Perry’s spokeswoman told The Houston Chronicle he “would support amending the U.S. Constitution…to protect innocent life.” Most versions of the Human Life Amendment would ban abortion throughout the country, even in states that want to keep it legal.
After Saturday’s rally, Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association, which sponsored the event, enthused that “the governor is a staunch social conservative, believing in both the sanctity of life and marriage not just as personal principles but as principles of public policy.” The evidence: “He supports federal amendments to protect both the unborn and man-woman marriage.”
Fischer and Perry seem to have similar ideas about constitutional fidelity. Fischer supports the First Amendment except when it comes to non-Christians, while Perry supports the 10th Amendment except when it comes to marriage and abortion.
These “fair-weather federalists” are growing tiresome. No, I don’t mean Fischer and Perry, I mean folks like Sullum. If they were willing to follow their logic they’d argue we should have never added the 13th Amendment since it interfered with the states’ right to legalize slavery and involuntary servitude. But they have no qualms with that particular amendment since it matches up with their own moral values.
When exactly did supporting the 10th Amendment mean that you could never, ever support a constitutional amendment that limits the rights of states? (My guess is that many conservatives and libertarians want to set the cut-off date on December 6, 1865.)