Constitutional Rights

Government can be freedom’s best friend when it protects citizens’ constitutional rights. Here’s how the Goldwater Institute is ensuring your rights are protected.

<p>Government can be freedom’s best friend when it protects citizens’ constitutional rights. Here’s how the Goldwater Institute is ensuring your rights are protected. </p>

The federal health care law gives states an option: Either establish insurance exchanges by January 1, 2014, or the Secretary of Health and Human Services will establish one for them. An “exchange” is essentially a bureaucracy where federally-mandated and regulated health insurance may be bought and sold. Amazingly, some states that otherwise oppose the federal health care law, including some who have joined the Florida lawsuit that is on its way to the U.S. Supreme Court, are choosing to implement these exchanges.

This case does not involve a mere clash between state and federal law. It involves the federal government’s effort to quash an exercise of state sovereignty that directly serves the structural purpose of federalism in our compound republic—the protection of individual liberty guaranteed by the Bill of Rights. Such federal overreaching must be rejected if the vertical separation of powers established by the letter and spirit of our Constitution means anything. Read the documents below:

The Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms for self defense in one's home is fully applicable to the states through the Fourteenth Amendment. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit reversed and remanded.

PDF Attached.

This brief addresses the government’s failure of principle and logic in this case. The United States’ brief argues correctly that the Second Amendment protects a fundamental personal right to keep and bear arms, but then fails to acknowledge and advocate the simple and necessary conclusions that follow from that premise.

PDF attached.

The U.S. Constitution and state constitutions guarantee certain rights. Too often, government violates those rights instead of protecting them. The Goldwater Institute is committed to constitutional rule of law and focuses on property rights, campaign finance, legislative terms, balance of power among levels of government, processes of judicial appointment, and state sovereignty, among others.


Long-time supporters and patrons of the Goldwater Institute, an Arizona-based conservative think-tank, gathered Feb. 4 with great anticipation to meet Richard Epstein, the rock star of legal scholarship.

I am a groupie of two people in this world: Paul McCartney and Richard Epstein, said Clint Bolick, director of the Scharf-Norton Center for Constitutional Litigation at the Goldwater Institute.

Noted conservatives Al Regnery, Mickey Edwards and David Boaz last week discussed the future of the conservative movement at a Goldwater Institute forum.

The three talked with Viewpoints Editor Joe Garcia before the event.

In front of more than 300 members of the Tucson community yesterday, Clint Bolick leaned in to his microphone and told the partisan crowd what most of them did not want to hear.

"I'm going to focus my comments on the practical side of what has come to be known as affirmative action," he said. "But what I refer to as preferential treatment."

A criminal case against Phoenix New Times fell apart Friday amid a crush of public outrage and admissions that a special county prosecutor made serious mistakes.

Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas dismissed all charges against the free weekly newspaper less than 24 hours after two New Times owners were arrested for publishing details of a grand-jury subpoena that demanded the Internet records of any person who had visited the newspaper's Web site since 2004.

Normally the Arizona Federation of Taxpayers comments on the policy positions of Arizona legislators, not federal judges.

But through his judicial decisions in recent years, U.S. District Judge Raner Collins has effectively appointed himself to the Arizona Legislature.

Indeed, Judge Collins has become a very powerful legislator, able to single-handedly mandate an appropriation of $150 million - more than 1 percent of the state's General Fund budget - in additional spending on English-language learner (ELL) programs.