The following principles should be considered planks in the platform of
any candidate who calls himself or herself a "constitutionalist":
- The rights recognized in the Bill of Rights are rights that
precede the Constitution, apply to all persons everywhere and all times, and
considered as restrictions on the actions of government officials or agents,
apply to all officials or agents at all levels of government, federal, state,
and local, and even to the treatment of any persons anywhere outside the
territorial jurisdiction of the United States, except when otherwise authorized
by a declaration of war or letters of marque and reprisal.
- The right to keep and bear arms, like other rights in the Bill
of Rights, is an individual right, at all levels of government, and covers all
weapons or other tools or supplies that might be used for defense, riot
control, personal protection, law enforcement, or emergency response. The only
regulation permitted is to facilitate and discipline militia and enhance its
- No right, including the right to keep and bear arms, may be
disabled, that is, restricted partially or entirely, by any process other than
a trial in which the subject shall have the right of a jury, and in which the
burden of proof is on the petitioner that either the disablement is a
punishment authorized by statute for a crime proved to have been committed by
the subject, or that if the right of the defendant is not disabled it would be
exercised in a way that would threaten the rights of others or be a danger to
the defendant. Any statute disabling a right for a person convicted of a crime
is a prohibited bill of attainder. Any such disablement must be explicitly
stated in the sentence or judgment of the court.
- Legislative restriction of any right constitutes a prohibited
bill of attainder, and perhaps also a prohibited ex post facto statute, and as
such is null and void from inception. This includes statutes restricting
purchase, possession, or use of a weapon, or the exercise of any other right,
by persons convicted of a crime if the restriction is not made part of the
sentence. It also includes statutes requiring carry permits for a weapon. The
only credential permitted in regard to any right is a certificate that the
right has not been disabled, but the carrying of such a certificate may not be
- In all references to the power to "regulate", that power does
not include the power to prohibit all modalities of a thing, and it does not
include the power to impose criminal penalties (disablement of life, limb, or
liberty), but only civil (fines, loss of privileges).
- The "commerce" among the states and with foreign nations which
the Congress has the power to regulate (Art. I Sec. 8 Cl. 3) consists only of
transfers of ownership and possession of tangible goods, for a valuable
consideration, that commence in one state and terminate in another, or in one
state and terminate in a foreign nation, or in a foreign nation and terminate
in a state. It does not include regulation of "traffic" except insofar as it is
necessary to identify commercial traffic carrying commodities subject to
regulation. It does not include primary production, such as mining,
agriculture, herding, fishing, or hunting. It does not include manufacturing,
retail sales, possession, use, transport or disposal of one's property not part
of an exchange. It does not include other activities of those engaged in
commerce or anything not itself a tangible commodity that "affects" commerce,
substantially or otherwise.
- The only crimes committed on state territory over which the
national government have jurisdiction are (1) counterfeiting, (2) piracy and
felonies on the high seas, (3) offenses against the laws of nations (Art. I
Sec. 8), (4) violations of military law by military personnel or militia
personnel in actual service, (5) treason (Art. III Sec. 2), (6) enslavement
(13th Amendment), (7) deprivations of rights by a government agent (14th
Amendment), (8) deprivation of the right to vote on the basis of race (15th
Amendment), gender (19th Amendment), non-payment of a tax (24th Amendment), or
age 18 or older (26th Amendment). All other statutes imposing criminal
penalties are inapplicable to actions committed on state territory.
- The location of a crime governing the territorial jurisdiction
for its prosecution is the location of the center of the perpetrator's brain at
the moment the criminal act is performed, not where the effects of the act
occur. The only extraterritorial criminal jurisdiction is on the high seas and
unclaimed territory such as Antarctica or outer space.
- The powers "necessary and proper" (Art. I Sec. 8 Cl. 18) to a
delegated power are only those powers essential to the administration of the
delegated power, not any power that might serve the same purpose as such a
delegated power. In particular, it does not include the power to impose
criminal penalties for violation of a regulation, or for interference with
regulated or promoted activities or spending.
- The "general welfare" clause (Art. I Sec. 8 Cl. 1) is not the
delegation of a power, but a restriction of the power to raise taxes (and spend
the funds raised) to only those things that benefit the nation generally, and
not just some region or group. There is no federal power to make "internal
improvements" unless they are incidental to a delegated power, such as
- It is unconstitutional to impose a tax for a regulatory or
confiscatory purpose, or for any purpose other than the raising of revenue.
- There is no concurrent jurisdiction of the national government
and the state governments over any offense, and for purposes of the double
jeopardy protection (5th Amendment) the "same offense" is a physical act of the
accused, and multiple prosecution is prohibited for the same or continuing
physical act under different charges, statutes, or sovereigns. If the federal
government wants to assert jurisdiction for a violation of civil rights by a
state official, it must first void any prosecution by the state for the same
- The U.S. Congress has general legislative jurisdiction over a
territory only if (1) it has been purchased by the national government with the
consent of the legislature of the state of which it is a part; (2) it has been
purchased and is being used only for a public purpose; (3) the state
legislature has explicitly ceded exclusive legislative jurisdiction over that
specific parcel, described by metes and bounds, in a act according to that
state's constitution; and (4) the national government has clear title and
effective possession of the parcel. Concurrent jurisdiction is not permitted,
except that residents of the parcel should retain their citizenship in the
ceding state for purposes of voting for national and state office. Jurisdiction
reverts to the state if any of the conditions of its cession terminate. Such
territories include the District of Columbia, U.S. coastal waters, U.S.-flag
vessels at sea, and the grounds of U.S. embassies abroad. It does not include
possessions such as Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, or Guam, over which the
national government may have civil but not criminal jurisdiction.
- Citizenship of any political subdivision of the United States
is based only on residence address, and a person is a citizen of a federal
territory and subject to its jurisdiction only if he or she is a voluntary
resident of that territory.
- All persons present within the territorial jurisdiction of the
United States have the duty to not only obey constitutional statutes and other
official acts, but to help enforce them, and to train and equip themselves,
alone and in combination with others, to do so. All persons in their capacity
as defenders of the community are the militia, any person aware of a threat has
the authority and the duty to call up the militia to meet it, and any person
receiving a credible call up has the duty to respond to it. It is a duty to
maintain a militia system at a state of organization, training, and equipment,
involving all fit adult citizens and would-be citizens, sufficient to overcome
- In any situation in which laws are in conflict, any person has
the inalienable duty to make an independent determination of which law is
superior, and to enforce the superior law. When that superior law is the
Constitution, the duty is called constitutional review, and judicial review
when done by a court. It may not be relinquished to superiors, judges, or legal
- Unless a criminal statute explicitly limits who may enforce it,
it is equally enforceable by any person, and enforcement authority is derived
from the law and from a warrant or commission, not from a title or employment
status. Government agents have no criminal law enforcement authority that
civilians don't also have. However, law enforcement officials, such as sheriffs
and U.S. marshals, may have command rank in situations where they are present.
The title of "federal agent" carries no command rank.
- Any protection of government agents or other persons from
criminal or civil liability for their actions, or special penalties for
offenses against them, not enjoyed by others, constitutes the granting to them
of a title of nobility, which is prohibited.
- Based on available evidence, and until it can be proved
otherwise, the Income Tax Amendment shall be considered not to have been
ratified. Even if it was, the "income" which is taxable under it is only
"unearned" income such as interest, dividends, and rents, and not wages for
- Fiat currency must not be made legal tender within a state, and
the constitutional requirement that only gold or silver be legal tender on
state territory must be enforced. Federal reserve notes are not legal tender
for the payment of debts within, to, or from a state.
- A constitution is not a contract but the Supreme Law, which
provides for all contracts into which any department of government may engage.
There are no "implied contracts" in which a government is a party.
- Common law crimes are ex post facto and as such
prohibited by the Constitution. In particular, the national government has no
authority to punish for perjury, fraud, or contempt of court any act not
committed on federal territory.
- Require that all issues of law be argued in the presence of the
jury, who shall be provided with copies of all pleadings and access to an
adequate law library. Instruct the jury has it the power to review legal
decisions of the court, as well as decide the facts, for a general verdict in a
case. The only exception would be legal argument that cannot be made without disclosing evidence that is properly excluded.
- In a jury trial any opinion on the law rendered by a judge
shall be considered testimony, subject to cross-examination and rebuttal.
- The right of an accused to counsel is a right to counsel of his
choice, including persons not otherwise admitted to practice law.
- Prosecution of persons accused of a crime may not be limited to
public prosecutors. The determination of who may criminally prosecute is the
exclusive duty of a grand jury.
- Courts and prosecutors are not permitted to obstruct access of
any person to a grand jury to present evidence or a petition, but only to
regulate the timing and manner of it to make such access orderly and
- Only a natural person or aggregate of natural persons may be a
party to a legal proceeding. In particular, in rem "civil forfeiture" is
prohibited unless there is no apparent owner or claimant, in which case the
defendant is "persons unknown". Property shall be taken only to the extent
necessary to pay a specific fine or judgment imposed by the ruling of a court.
It may not include any assets not exclusively owned by, or, if the ownership
cannot be determined, in the exclusive possession of the accused, and any
surplus from a public sale of the asset over that needed to pay such fine or
judgment shall be returned to the apparent owner or possessor.
- The President or other public official may not direct any
offensive action by the military or militia without congressional authorization
in the form of a declaration or war or letters of marque or reprisal, and any
such unauthorized direction shall constitute a criminal violation under the law
of nations clause (Art. I Sec. 8 Cl. 10) and an impeachable offense.
- The offenses covered under the authority to punish offenses
against the law of nations (Art. 1 Sec. 8 Cl. 10) include only the following:
- Attacks on foreign nations, their citizens, or shipping,
without either a declaration of war or letters of marque and reprisal.
- Dishonoring of the flag of truce, peace treaties, and
- Depredation of wrecked ships, their passengers and crew,
and their cargo, by those who might find them.
- Piracy on the high seas, even if those making the capture
or their nations had not been victims.
- Mistreatment of prisoners of war.
- Attacks on foreign embassies, ambassadors, and diplomats,
and on foreign ships and their passengers, crew, and cargo while in domestic
waters or in port.
- Dishonoring of extradition treaties for criminals who
committed crimes in a nation with whom one has such a treaty who escape to
one's territory or are found on the high seas.
- Enslavement of foreign nationals and international trading in slaves.
- Entry into a country across its border without consent of lawful authorities.
It does not include any other treaties or violations thereof, and no
treaty provisions are permitted or enforceable which would require the exercise
of powers not delegated by the Constitution.
- Limits or disclosures on campaign contributions not convertible
to the personal use of the candidate, even when accepted in exchange for public
funding, are prohibited by the 1st Amendment, and any such public funding must
be of general benefit to the nation and not to any region or group.
- Religious observances may not be supported by government agents
or public funds, but neither may they be reasonably restricted on public
premises when initiated and funded by private persons, provided that this is
not done in a way that is disruptive or offensive.
- The monitoring of communications by government agents, which
the participants have the reasonable expectation of being private, is
prohibited without a specific search warrant and notification of the parties
involved if such notification is feasible.
- Any search warrant must be served on the owner or possessor of
the premises, and such person must have the reasonable opportunity to verify
the validity of the warrant, unless such person cannot be found within a
reasonable time. It is not permitted to wait until such person is absent to
search his premises, or fail to notify the person as soon as possible if such a
search and seizure is conducted.
- "No knock" search or arrest warrants are not permitted unless
there is imminent threat of death or injury to an innocent person, and it is
not permissible to prosecute any person for resisting an improper execution of
a warrant with deadly force or for any death or injuries that might result
- Legislative and judicial powers may not be subdelegated, and
executive powers may not be delegated to the agents of a different sovereign.
No official may make a decision adversely affecting a privilege or immunity of
a person in his jurisdiction based on an act or decision by an agent of a
- Government agencies or departments may not legislate for
civilians by issuing "regulations" governing them, and it should never be
necessary for a reasonable person to have to read a "regulation" or other
directive to discover how to interpret a statute or decide whether or how it
might apply to him. Regulations and executive orders apply only to subordinates
of the issuing executive, including officials, agents, and contractors, or to
persons visiting proprietary facilities, or using proprietary assets, of the
- No person shall be penalized or obstructed from petitioning for redress
against any government agency or executive official, or staff members of the
legislative or judicial branches, for relief under contract, tort, injunction,
or declaration, although it may require that monetary judgments require a
special appropriation by the legislative branch. The financial responsibility
of officials must be secured by adequate bond, and if public policy seeks to
make officials personally immune, the government must assume financial
liability for claims against them.
- Replace creation of judges by elections or appointments by
political officials with sortition, or random selection, and replace single
judges with multi-judge panels to the extent feasible, from a pool selected by
objective examinations, to serve for limited terms, and to be assigned to cases
- Require that upon demand by any person, through a petition for a writ of quo warranto, and before continuing
with an enforcement action, any official prove his authority for the action, by
an unbroken logical chain leading back to the applicable constitution. Reverse
the presumption of authority.
- Eliminate licensing of occupations, especially the practice of
law. Establish that the practice of any occupation may be disabled only by
order of a court of competent jurisdiction, on petition therefor and proof by a
preponderance of evidence and verdict by nine of a jury of twelve, that if not
disabled the right would likely be abused, or beyond a reasonable doubt that
the defendant committed an offense for which a statute specifies disablement of
the right as a punishment, by a unanimous verdict of a jury of twelve.
- Secret budgets and expenditures are prohibited by Art. I Sec. 9
Cl. 7, and are not to be permitted on grounds of "national security". This
includes any funds administered by public officials or government agents even
if derived from other sources than taxes or fees. Forbid proprietary ownership
or control of private organizations by government agents or agencies except
temporarily for law enforcement investigations.
- Reform the Civil Service and congressional staff systems to
make it easier to reassign personnel and prevent them from becoming too
entrenched in any department or location. Reassign personnel at regular
intervals and randomly cull them. Limit terms of service. Eliminate the
seniority system. Set up chains of supervision and inspection to prevent
collusion or evasion of oversight.
- Have the states cede territorial jurisdiction to Congress, in
accordance with Art. I Sec. 8 Cl. 17, of airspace 300 meters or more above
buildings or terrain features, so that federal air traffic control there can be
- Require the boundaries between federal, state, and local
jurisdictions be clearly marked so that anyone passing from one to the other
will have proper notice thereof.