Newt Gingrich on Sunday hammered at the nation’s judiciary system, saying that if a court’s decision was out of step with American popular opinion, it should be ignored.
There’s “no reason the American people need to tolerate a judge that out of touch with American culture,” Gingrich said on CBS’ Face the Nation, referring to a case where a judge ruled that explicit references to religion were barred from a high school graduation ceremony. And Gingrich recently has said judges should have to explain some of their decisions before Congress.
Host Bob Schieffer asked Gingrich how he planned to enforce that. Would you call in the Capitol Police to apprehend a federal judge, he asked.
“If you had to,” Gingrich said. “Or you’d instruct the Justice Department to send the U.S. Marshall in.”
A judge should have to explain his or her radical decisions, Gingrich emphasized again. Gingrich’s tough words against the judiciary branch have drawn fire from even conservatives. Former attorney general under President George W. Bush, Michael Mukasey, told Fox News that Gingrich’s proposals were “dangerous” and “totally irresponsible.”
Gingrich claims his tough stance is part of a key question going into the 2012 elections: “Do you want to move towards American exceptionalism, reassert the Constitution, reassert the nature of America, or do you, in fact, want to become a secular, European, sort of bureaucratic socialist society?”
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David Taintor is TPM’s News Editor. He contributes to TPM’s Livewire coverage, among other areas. David is from Chanhassen, Minnesota, where, yes, it gets very cold. Reach him at taintor [at] talkingpointsmemo.com