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Justice Ginsburg Reminds Us What is at Stake in November

Monday, February 13, 2012

By Chris W. Cox, NRA-ILA Executive Director
This November’s election isn’t about the direction of our country over the next four years – it’s about the very survival of our Constitution, our values, and our freedoms as we know them. If freedom-loving Americans needed any more evidence for this, U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg recently provided it.

In a visit to Cairo, Egypt, Justice Ginsburg told Al Hayat television, “I would not look to the U.S. Constitution, if I were drafting a constitution in the year 2012.”

Instead, she urged Egyptians to look elsewhere to more modern constitutions in South Africa, Canada, and even the European Convention on Human Rights.
Of course, not one of these governing documents comes close to adequately guaranteeing the fundamental human rights and liberties enshrined in our U.S. Constitution. It’s also worth pointing out that Ginsburg’s eagerness to diminish the sanctity of America’s supreme law is hardly shocking, as this isn’t the first time she’s gone out of her way to disparage the document she swore an oath to uphold.

But her comments should serve as a chilling reminder of everything that is at stake in this year’s presidential election.

If President Barack Obama wins reelection, he could have the opportunity to fill up to three vacancies on the Supreme Court. And as we’ve seen in his first term, Obama is not interested in appointing sound, originalist nominees to the high court.

Rather, the President is committed to stacking the court with anti-Second Amendment, anti-freedom justices who are motivated to make rulings that dismantle the fundamental freedoms guaranteed in our Bill of Rights. In essence, Obama wants judges in the Ruth Bader Ginsburg mold, who are brazen enough to undermine the very laws and individual human rights they swear to defend.

For example, in the Supreme Court’s landmark Heller decision that narrowly struck down Washington, D.C.’s unconstitutional gun ban by a 5-4 vote, Ginsburg and three of her colleagues concluded that the Second Amendment does not guarantee an individual right to own a firearm, nor does it protect our right to defend ourselves, our property, or our loved ones.

Ginsburg may have lost that round, but assuredly, she knows how close the anti-freedom wing of the court is to erasing our Second Amendment freedom out of existence. As Ginsburg told a Harvard Club audience in 2009, she looks forward to the day when a “future, wiser court” overturns 5-4 decisions like Heller.

NRA members, gun owners and all liberty-minded Americans need to recognize that our future is now. This year’s election is a choice between the America our Founding Fathers established, and a radically different America that Barack Obama and Ruth Bader Ginsburg envision.

Chris W. Cox is the Executive Director of The National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action and serves as the organization’s chief lobbyist.

This article first appeared in



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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.