To give you an idea of just how crazed David Barton is, look at what he said on a recent radio show. He says Congress should impeach any judge who issues a ruling they don’t like. And he starts with this illogical argument:
Barton: Well, the first part is they’re not appointed for life. That’s one of the things that people think today and this is one of the great judicial myths that’s out there that’s absolutely not accurate. If you go back and look at the Constitution, Article III deals with the judiciary; there’s nothing in there about judges being appointed for life. They’re not appointed for life.
What they did, and what they also did in the federal Constitution, when you read it it says federal judges are allowed to hold their appointments for the quote ‘duration of good behavior.’ That’s not a lifetime appointment – that’s as long as you act right you can stay there as a federal judge. But if you don’t act right, we’re going to take you out.
By this “reasoning” the president isn’t elected for a four year term because they can be impeached at any time. Brilliant.
There have been 97 impeachment investigations across history with judges; you’ve had 13 impeachments taken off the court. And the more often you have an impeachment investigation, the less often you have to remove a judge because, what Thomas Jefferson says, impeachment is a scarecrow – you sit out there in the middle of the field and that will scare them off.
Green: Because all the other judges are watching that, going ‘I don’t want that to be me.’
Barton: You betcha. For example, take the judge in California that says, oh no, having ‘under God’ in the Pledge of Allegiance, completely unconstitutional.
What you do is you convene a hearing in Washington DC, Congress says we want you to come appear before the judiciary committee and explain to us exactly what your thinking is that says we can’t acknowledge God when that’s in the Declaration and in the Constitution. What are you thinking?
And other judges see him getting called before Congress to be accountable and they go ‘oh my gosh, we’re not going to touch that.’ Exactly!
Let me repeat what Alexander Hamilton said about the necessity of an independent judiciary:
The complete independence of the courts of justice is peculiarly essential in a limited Constitution. By a limited Constitution, I understand one which contains certain specified exceptions to the legislative authority; such, for instance, as that it shall pass no bills of attainder, no ex-post-facto laws, and the like. Limitations of this kind can be preserved in practice no other way than through the medium of courts of justice, whose duty it must be to declare all acts contrary to the manifest tenor of the Constitution void. Without this, all the reservations of particular rights or privileges would amount to nothing.
If Congress were to start impeaching judges because they disagree with a ruling, judicial independence is destroy — and so is the very idea of a Bill of Rights.