Goodbye Fourth Amendment

Say goodbye to the Fourth Amendment folks.  After saying a fond farewell to it in Indiana Monday, today we get to learn how it’s now almost dead on the national stage as well.  Yesterday, in the case Kentucky vs. King, the Supreme Court took a big bite out of the protections we are supposed to enjoy.

Courtesy of the Cato Institute:

In this case, the police were after a drug dealer after he fled from a controlled-buy transaction.  The dealer entered some apartment but the police were unsure of the unit number.  As the police got closer, they could smell marijuana coming from a nearby apartment.  Instead of posting an officer nearby and applying for a warrant, they decided to bang on the door, shouting “Police!”  Hearing some rustling inside, the police broke down the door so evidence could not be destroyed.  The occupants were arrested on drug charges and they later challenged the legality of the police entry and search.  (As it happens, the dealer the police were trying to capture was found in another apartment.)

The lower courts have generally frowned on what they describe as exigencies manufactured by police conduct, but the Supreme Court has now overturned those lower court precedents by a 8-1 vote.  In dissent, Justice Ginsburg asked the right question: “How ‘secure’ do our homes remain if police, armed with no warrant, can pound on doors at will and, on hearing sounds indicative of things moving, forcibly enter and search for evidence of unlawful activity?”  And the unfortunate answer to the question is, a lot less secure.

I don’t often agree with Justice Ginsburg, but this time I agree completely.

Indiana Supreme Court nullifies the Fourth Amendment

Indiana.  What a unique state.  For example, few states are more thought of when it comes to basketball than good old Indiana.  Now, we can even thank them for being the one of the first states to overturn the Fourth Amendment.  Congratulations Indiana.  I never thought that one was even possible, but you proved me wrong.

In case you missed it, Indiana has ruled that you have no right at all to stop a police officer trying to enter your home illegally.  Now, I’m not talking about shooting the guy or anything either.  I’m saying you can’t physically hold him as he tries to enter your house without a warrant.


INDIANAPOLIS | Overturning a common law dating back to the English Magna Carta of 1215, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Hoosiers have no right to resist unlawful police entry into their homes.

In a 3-2 decision, Justice Steven David writing for the court said if a police officer wants to enter a home for any reason or no reason at all, a homeowner cannot do anything to block the officer’s entry.

“We believe … a right to resist an unlawful police entry into a home is against public policy and is incompatible with modern Fourth Amendment jurisprudence,” David said. “We also find that allowing resistance unnecessarily escalates the level of violence and therefore the risk of injuries to all parties involved without preventing the arrest.”

David said a person arrested following an unlawful entry by police still can be released on bail and has plenty of opportunities to protest the illegal entry through the court system.

The court’s decision stems from a Vanderburgh County case in which police were called to investigate a husband and wife arguing outside their apartment.

Mike Pence announces bid for Governor of Indiana

While many fiscal conservatives want him to run for president, Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) has decided to run for Governor of Indiana:

Indiana Rep. Mike Pence (R) announced Thursday he’s running for governor in 2012.

“I’m in this race,” the congressman said in a Web video where he appears with his wife, Karen.

There was speculation earlier this year that Pence would opt to run for president, but he ruled himself out of the field in January.

Here is the announcement video:

Is Dick Lugar a target of the Club for Growth?

Chris Chocola, president of the Club for Growth - an organization making the rounds in the press lately, may have given us a hint of things to come if Sen. Dick Lugar (R-IN) runs for re-election:

The Club for Growth is well-known for taking on establishment Republicans who they feel don’t live up to the Club’s “pro-growth” ideals such as “limited government, low taxes and economic freedom.”

In 2010, for example, the Club for Growth ran ads attacking Sen. Robert Bennett for his vote for TARP and his support for “billions in government spending” (R-UT). Bennett ultimately lost the GOP nomination to Mike Lee.

This year, Club for Growth President and former Indiana Republican Rep. Chris Chocola warns longtime Senator and top Tea Party target Dick Lugar (R-IN) that it may be best for him to leave Congress than to stay and face what is shaping up to be a serious primary battle. Chocola told ABC’s “Top Line” this afternoon, that “we do have some concerns about Senator Lugar and his service. We think it would be probably best if he would retire at this point.”

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), another prime target for a primary challenge, has been reaching out to the tea party movement and fiscal conservatives in hopes to keep away an opponent (Rep. Jason Chaffetz is a frequently mentioned candidate). Lugar, who has $3 million in the bank for his re-election bid, has been largely doing the exact opposite.

Mitch Daniels’ fiscal conservative credentials

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels is talking tough on spending, as is nearly every potential GOP candidate for president. Nearly two weeks ago at CPAC, Daniels dubbed the deficit the new “red scare” in a speech that raised eyebrows of many Republicans.

But as Alex Knapp notes, Daniels credibility is lacking:

Looking at the Republican field for 2012, I’m more than a little disheartened that the most prudent and fiscally conservative contender for the Republican nomination is Mitch Daniels.

The same Mitch Daniels who, as director of OMB, oversaw a federal budget that went from a $236 billion suprlus to a $400 billion deficit.

The same Mitch Daniels who stated that the cost of the Iraq War would be “only about $50-60 billion.” (Actual cost to date — over $800 billion and climbing.)


Now, I’ll be fair. I’m only now starting to look at Mitch Daniels. I haven’t had a chance to review his record as Governor. Maybe it’s an improvement.

But in the past few weeks I’ve heard him bandied about as the “fiscally conservative” candidate, and I have to say the first time I heard that, I laughed.

Liberty Links: Morning Reads for Thursday, February 24th

Below is a collection of several links that we didn’t get around to writing about, but still wanted to post for readers to examine. The stories typically range from news about prominent figures in the liberty movement, national politics, the nanny state, foreign policy and free markets.

Countdown to Government Shutdown (National Journal)

Troubled banks rise to highest level in 18 years (CBS News)

Tea Party senator: House GOP funding bill ‘not even close’ on cuts (The Hill)

DCCC targets House Republicans on budget (The Hill)

2012 Ad Blitz for Obama Planned (Wall Street Journal)

In Turnabout, U.S. Says Marriage Act Blocks Gay Rights (The New York Times)

The capital’s red-light district (Las Vegas Sun)

Panel: Green jobs company endorsed by Obama and Biden squandered $535 million in stimulus money (The Daily Caller)

The reaction to Ron Paul’s straw poll victory reveals the GOP’s hypocrisy (Charleston City Paper)

Liberty Links: Morning Reads for Tuesday, January 25th

Below is a collection of several links that we didn’t get around to writing about, but still wanted to post for readers to examine. The stories typically range from news about prominent figures in the liberty movement, national politics, the nanny state, foreign policy and free markets.

Conservatives push Mike Pence to run for president

While most observers believe that Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) will run for Governor of his home state in 2012, some conservatives are forming a group to encourage him to run for president:

A group of conservatives on Monday urged Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana to run for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, setting up an independent committee aimed at marshaling money and support on his behalf.

If it’s successful at pushing Pence into the race — he says he’ll decide by the end of January — the group hopes that it can help offset the financial advantage that better-known rivals enjoy, such as former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney or former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
Pence, 51, isn’t widely known and would have a small fund-raising base in Indiana. A former radio talk-show host who says he was first inspired by Rush Limbaugh, Pence has been elected to the House of Representatives five times from an Indiana district where the largest city is Muncie.

In the House he led a conservative charge against President George W. Bush’s move to expand Medicare to cover prescription drugs, complained about rising budget deficits under Republican rule and unsuccessfully challenged John Boehner of Ohio for leadership of House Republicans after the party lost control of the chamber in 2006.

He won the chairmanship of the House Republican Conference two years later, the third spot in the party’s leadership, but he stepped down at the start of this Congress as he wrestled over whether to run for president or governor of Indiana.

Pence steps down

Despite the GOP taking control of the House, Rep. Mike Pence has stepped down from his leadership role to prep for his future:

Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) will step down from his position as chairman of the House Republican Conference, he announced on Wednesday.

Pence informed fellow House Republicans in a “Dear Colleague” letter that he would leave his third-ranking position within the House GOP to consider future opportunities — possibly a run for governor, or president.

“I am writing to inform you that, after much prayerful consideration, I have decided not to seek reelection as chairman of the House Republican Conference,” Pence said.

The open position will be the fourth-ranking job in the new House Republican leadership. GOP leader John Boehner (Ohio) will likely become Speaker, and Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) will likely become majority leader.

The Nos. 3 and 4 positions — majority whip and conference chairman — are likely to become the subject of intense jockeying by ambitious House Republicans.

Among the candidates for both jobs are National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (Texas), Chief Deputy Whip Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), Conference Vice Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (Wash.) and Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.), who said Tuesday that more than a dozen colleagues had encouraged her to seek Pence’s job.

Many commentators believe that Pence, who is widely viewed as one of the more well-known conservatives in the House caucus, is setting himself up for a run for president in 2012 or Governor of Indiana.

Mitch Daniels is crossed of my list for 2012

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels has found his way off my list of potential Republicans I could vote for in 2012 as he recently said that he was open to tariffs on imported oil and a VAT (though to replace the current tax system):

Daniels, once the Hudson Institute’s chief executive, described himself as an acolyte of Kahn’s and marveled at the creative thinking evident in his 1982 book, “The Coming Boom.”

Daniels recited from Kahn’s book: “It would be most useful to redesign the tax system to discourage consumption and encourage savings and investment. One obvious possibility is a value added tax and flat income tax, with the only exception being a lower standard deduction.”

“That might suit our current situation pretty well,” said Daniels, who served as George W. Bush’s Office of Management and Budget director and was a senior adviser in Ronald Reagan’s White House. “It also might fit Bill Simon’s line in the late ‘70s that the nation should have a tax system that looks like someone designed it on purpose.”
Daniels also suggested support for increasing gasoline taxes. Kahn wrote, in a passage Daniels read from Thursday, “One fully justifiable tax would be on imported oil. Any large importation of oil by the U.S. raises security problems. There are, in effect, external costs associated with importing oil that a tariff would internalize.

“Now, maybe that transgresses some philosophical viewpoint of yours,” Daniels told the well-heeled crowd of 250. “But to me, that’s an interesting point today, just as valid as the day he wrote it.


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