Free Congress Foundation
Jan. 7, 1999 

Clinton Subverts Constitution, Again 

by: Cliff Kincaid 

As he was headed toward impeachment by the House, President Clinton
committed another outrage that should have been submitted as yet
another example of his crimes against the Constitution. On December 10,
he issued executive order (EO) 13107 on the "Implementation of Human
Rights Treaties." In this extraordinary document, he claimed the power
to implement U.N.-sponsored treaties "concerned with the protection and
promotion of human rights to which the United States is now or may
become a party in the future..." (emphasis added). In other words, it
appears that he wants to implement unratifed treaties.

If Senators are truly undecided about or opposed to the impeachment of
Clinton, they should take a close look at this EO. Basically, Clinton
is telling the Senate, which must ratify treaties, to "drop dead."
Nothing is going to get in the way of his global agenda - not even the
Senate, the House or the Constitution itself.

It's no wonder Clinton's lawyers don't want new evidence presented in
the impeachment trial. Forget about his alleged son by a black
prostitute. The new evidence would consist of his open disdain for our
Constitutional system, with the December 10 EO as "Exhibit One."

The treaties that "may" be ratified are apparently the Convention on
the Rights of the Child, which substitutes the state for parents, and
the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women,
which would dictate government control of the economy for the purpose
of guaranteeing "equal rights" for women.

However, Clinton's use of the word "may" suggests something ominous.
Senator Jesse Helms, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Commitee,
had bottled up those treaties, preventing them from coming up for a
vote. Has a deal been cut? Has Secretary of State Madeline Albright
prevailed upon her friend, Senator Helms, to schedule a vote? Remember
that Helms and Albright previously collaborated on a U.N. "reform" bill
that gave the world body $1 billion in U.S. taxpayer dollars.

Even if they aren't ratified, however, it appears that Clinton wants to
use this executive order to implement them anyway. Clinton claimed "the
authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of
the United States of America" and insisted that the U.S. had
"obligations" under them. He said that various federal agencies would
implement their terms, such as by reviewing and monitoring compliance
by the states. The executive order also mandated federal cooperation
with U.N. representatives who travel throughout the U.S. to monitor
U.S. compliance with those treaties.  Several such visits have taken

In short, Clinton appears to be establishing an enforcement mechanism,
in the form of a new federal bureaucracy, to implement treaties. This
is a radical departure from the customary practice and constitutional
responsibility of the Congress to pass legislation to implement U.N.
treaties that have been ratified by the Senate. Once again, Clinton is
bypassing Congress.

Clinton's action is unconstitutional and outrageous but it does not
mean that the American system and the Bill of Rights will be eliminated
anytime soon.

Clinton is participating in a deliberate and subversive process that is
designed to gradually undermine our system and our laws and replace
them with U.N.-style "international law."

This executive order specifically mentioned three treaties to be
implemented through federal action: the International Covenant on Civil
and Political Rights (ICCPR), the Convention Against Torture and Other
Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT), and the
Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination

But what exactly can Clinton do to implement these treaties through
federal pressure? He can affect the operations of the federal
government. And this is substantial. But his influence on the states
could be minimal. Clearly, there won't be any dramatic changes
overnight. Again, what we are witnessing is another effort to force
their implementation over time, through changes in law and policy.

Historically, under any of these treaties, when ratified, "compliance
reports" from the U.S. Government are required to be submitted to the
U.N. Most of them get no significant attention and are largely
irrelevant to anything that Congress does. However, it is embarrassing
that the U.S. has to submit reports on our human rights record to a
body that features representatives from China, Cuba, Sudan and Libya.

The key battleground that bears watching is the campaign by
liberal-left non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to monitor and force
U.S. compliance with the treaties. These include such notables as
Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. They were undoubtedly
overjoyed by Clinton's executive order and they are very effective at
using the news media. The executive order gives them more ammunition,
and U.S. Government backing, to move forward with their pro-U.N.

Consider an NGO calling itself the World Organization Against Torture,
USA. It gets big bucks from the Ford Foundation and the World Council
of Churches. It has issued elaborate reports claiming that the U.S. is
currently violating the ICCPR, the CAT and CERD by operating a criminal
justice system that discriminates against minority groups. One of their
key demands is U.S. abolition of the death penalty, which is also a
goal of the U.N. They claim the U.S. is violating various treaties by
supposedly imposing the death penalty in a racially discriminatory

But whatever the U.N. and its treaties and NGOs may say, and regardless
of what is in Clinton's executive order, the fact is that the U.S. will
continue to use the death penalty until the Congress, the states or our
own courts abolish it. So the ultimate decision is in our hands - at
least for a while.

This does not mitigate what Clinton has done; it only puts it in proper
perspective. He is wielding a powerful weapon on behalf of the U.N.
agenda (despite his own public pronouncements in favor of the death
penalty) and he has given U.N.-affiliated NGOs a great incentive to
accelerate their campaign to change the U.S. political, economic, and
social system.

But in furthering their global agenda, Clinton may have put himself in
more political jeopardy. Under the current circumstances, Clinton may
have been able to get away with an executive order that enforced
existing and ratified treaties. But when he put his name on a directive
that appears to give him the power to implement unratifed treaties, he
made a grave error. He thumbed his growing nose at the Constitution --
and the members of the Senate.

For once, Clinton wasn't so slick. He should pay dearly for this one -
with his job.

Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the Free Congress Foundation's Center
for America's Survival.

Contact: Cliff Kincaid @ Free Congress Foundation 202.546.3000

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