Categorized | ICLEI, News


I have blogged on the threat of ICLEI, the UN-blessed cartel of local governments around the world.  I contend that a local government in the USA cannot be a member of a group that advocates foreign policy aims or objectives abroad.  I now suggest the Supreme Court of the United States would agree.

There is a recent case [Crosby v. National Foreign Trade Counsel, 530 U.S. 363 (2000)] where the Court discusses a Massachusetts law that forbad state agencies from dealing with the government of Myanmar (Burma).  The Court held that this law was unconstitutional for several reasons, one of which was a conflict with an Act of Congress but another reason was that “…the state Act is at odds with the President’s intended authority to speak for the United States among the world’s nations…”

The Court held further that various acts of Congress indicated clearly the national government would speak as one on the issue of relations with Myanmar.  The state law hindered the President’s actions and threatened the US with adverse rulings by the EU and WTO (Of course I dissent from any hint that I recognize the WTO or the EU has ANY power to govern OUR actions.) and thus was also invalid.

I agree the Crosby case did not directly say that states could not hold foreign policy positions however, a prior case did:  Zschernig v. Miller, 389 U.S. 429 (1968).

Zschernig arose from an otherwise admirable statute that prohibited a heir from taking an intestate’s (one who died without a valid will) share if that heir was a resident of an Eastern European satellite nation of the former (Praise God!) Soviet Union.  The Supreme Court does not ordinarily take state probate cases but the Zschernigs, residents of former (Thank God!) East Germany, made a pure constitutional claim that the Oregon law involved the state in foreign policy determinations.  Here’s what the Court concluded:

“The present Oregon law is not as gross an intrusion in the federal domain as those others might be. Yet, as we have said, it has a direct impact upon foreign relations, and may well adversely affect the power of the central government to deal with those problems.”

“The Oregon law does, indeed, illustrate the dangers which are involved if each State, speaking through its probate courts, is permitted to establish its own foreign policy.”

389 U.S. 429, 441 (1968)

If the state probate code or the probate courts cannot establish its own foreign policy, local governments cannot join a organization that has foreign policy goals.  The fact that our present administration agrees with ICLEI today does not mean a future one might disagree tomorrow.  Such an enlightened administration does not need local governments attempting to undermine it to the cheers of globalists in other nations.  We speak with one voice abroad (or we should!) and the Attorney General needs to rule that no Virginia municipality can legally assist ICLEI in its foreign policy goals.  Hence they must withdraw.  I call on liberty activists throughout the Commonwealth to urge those cities in the thrall of ICLEI to follow the lead of Carroll County MD and simply get out of ICLEI and to urge their attorney general to make such a ruling if your state allows it.  All it takes is one request.  One liberty activist.  One brave legislator.  The globalists have taken a huge hit over a community of 150,000 residents in a blue state withdrawing from ICLEI.

About Elwood Sanders

Elwood "Sandy" Sanders is a Hanover attorney who is an Appellate Procedure Consultant for Lantagne Legal Printing and has written ten scholarly legal articles. Sandy was also Virginia's first Appellate Defender and also helped bring curling in VA! (None of these titles imply any endorsement of Sanders’ views)

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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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