Judges in black robes should not be telling U.S. generals and admirals what they cannot do, and federal courts should not be interfering with the Navy's duty to patrol the oceans. The U.S. Constitution did not make the federal judiciary the commander in chief.
Environmentalists have no compunction about filing lawsuits to protect animals at the expense of national security. For years, their litigation prevented a fence from being built on the U.S.-Mexico border near San Diego.
The REAL ID Act, passed in May 2005, withdrew jurisdiction from federal courts over challenges to a fence built on the U.S.-Mexico border. This law enabled the San Diego fence to be built without further delay and is now preventing another lawsuit from stopping the building of a fence along the Arizona border. Unaccountable federal judges should not be giving orders to the U.S. Navy as it tries to defend American freedoms. Just as power was taken away from federal courts over environmental challenges to the building of a border fence, power should likewise be taken away from federal courts so that they do not interfere with national security.
Congress, including many Democrats, has already stripped jurisdiction from federal courts over the detaining of enemy combatants in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
When the Supreme Court found a way to bypass that law, Congress, including many Democrats, passed a new law to reinstate the withdrawal of jurisdiction more broadly, and that law is now before the U.S. Supreme Court.
When the anti-military MoveOn.org published its insulting attack against U.S. Army Gen. David H. Petraeus last fall in the New York Times, the Senate voted 75-25 to condemn that ad. But talk is cheap, and Senate resolutions do not have the force of law.
It's time for Congress to assume responsibility to protect national security by stripping federal courts from jurisdiction over the U.S. Navy.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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