Ben Carson Says The President Doesn’t Have To Obey Supreme Court Ruling On Gay Marriage

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In a Newsmax interview on Tuesday, Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said the president is not required to follow laws that are decided by the judicial branch of government. When asked what he would do to protect the “sanctity of marriage” in case the Supreme Court rules in favor of gay marriage, Carson responded by saying he could ignore the high court’s decision. The retired neurosurgeon decided to play constitutional scholar by arguing:

First of all, we have to understand how the Constitution works. The president is required to carry out the laws of the land, the laws of the land come from the legislative branch. So if the legislative branch creates a law or changes a law, the executive branch has a responsibly to carry it out. It doesn’t say they have the responsibility to carry out a judicial law.

Carson seems a tad confused about how the Constitution actually works. He apparently thinks Brown v. Board of Education and Roe v. Wade were just non-binding judicial decrees that had no legal standing. In his mind, the Supreme Court is only empowered to offer the power of suggestion, but the president doesn’t have to abide by Supreme Court rulings if he doesn’t want to.

Article III of the U.S. Constitution essentially grants the Supreme Court authority to be the final appellate court for determining the constitutionality of existing law. If the court deems an existing law unconstitutional, it becomes, by definition, unconstitutional. As a result, the court’s interpretation of the law is meant to govern the conduct of the American people, and the president, like every other American, is obliged to abide by the court’s ruling.

The Supreme Court is certainly not infallible. History reminds us that they are capable of making terrible rulings. Nevertheless, in our system of government, they are given an important role in determining which laws shall stand, and which ones fail to comply with the rights guaranteed by the Constitution.

The Supreme Court has not yet ruled on whether state laws that prohibit same-sex marriage are unconstitutional. Clearly, Ben Carson hopes they will rule against legalizing gay marriage. However, regardless of what the court decides, the president is required to honor the high court’s ruling.

59 Replies to “Ben Carson Says The President Doesn’t Have To Obey Supreme Court Ruling On Gay Marriage”

  1. I am pretty sure that was covered in my day in the fourth grade. If not then at least by the time we left elementary school it was covered in basic civics. He must have been absent that day and then not noticed all the events of the court in his lifetime and of course, he didn’t read any books on basic politics before running for the highest office in the land. Stunning.


  2. the ignorance of supposedly intelligent Republicans is both stunning and dismaying…

    this has to rank with Rand’s opinion that 5 men in black robes don’t decide what’s Constitutional…

    have ANY of these so called ‘I want to bring the country back to the Constitution’ actually read the the Constitution or did they just get the Cliff Notes version?

  3. Carson is as clueless about the U.S. Constitution and how our government works as he is about foreign policy and world affairs.

    Dr. Ben should stick to discussing neurosurgery. On all other matters, he is clearly out of his depth.

  4. Just shows you the stupid is not limited to white people but if you are an republican you are insane

  5. I think even the cliff notes would make this obvious; hell, I’m an Aussie and I understand how crazy what he’s saying is. But this is the same party that says the President has to have their permission to enter into talks with Iran hehe

  6. Article Two, Section 1 of the Constitution…the oath of office…”I do solemnly swear…to…preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” The SCOTUS is charged with determining if a contested law is constitutional. If yes, the President must honor it.

  7. I read Carson’s autobiography many years ago. It was a very good read.

    I don’t know what happened to him. I wonder if the aggressive form of prostate cancer and the extremely toxic chemo therapy might have done something to his brain cells. The man is obviously missing many cards in the deck. I don’t think one can pretend to believe the stuff he spouts.

    The students at Johns Hopkins refused to have him speak at their commencement. Evidently not even that gave him pause.

  8. And there goes any chance of him being President… like he had a chance to begin with though.

    Any common rube can tell you that the Supreme Court’s decision is pretty much the law of the land. You can’t just pick and choose which laws you’ll follow and which laws you’ll ignore. You got to follow all of them.

  9. The lights are on and nobody is home. This is going to be quite the show. Stay tuned. Issa won’t like Carson because he is corrupt and lawless.

  10. Cliff Notes? No worse…they carry around the Heritage Foundation Constitution and Bibles, neither of which have an iota of truth in them.

  11. Issa and most of the GOP won’t like Carson because he’s blah.Just like they will never support Carly because she has lady parts. Just for Bachmann and West last time around.

  12. Well, see if you’re a Republican, no you don’t. Look at Bundy..he STILL owes us a million bucks in grazing fees, and he’s still not in jail. They have their guns and their Nazi/er Confederate Tee shirts, so they don’t have to follow any of those stupid liberal laws. THEY are a law unto themselves. It worked so well for Jesse James, Al Capone, the Boston Strangler, and Hitler, whom they remind me more and more of.

  13. What I think Carson is referring to is the time Andrew Jackson (who Sarah Palin is such a fan of) defied the Supreme Court:

    “One of the greatest challenges the Supreme Court has ever faced was when Andrew Jackson refused to follow the will of the Court in regards to a case involving Native Americans in Georgia. The Supreme Court took up the case that challenged President Jackson forcing the Native Americans out of Georgia and ruled in their favor. After the Supreme Court ruled on the case Jackson still defied it, knowing that the Supreme Court did not have the military power to enforce their decisions. Jackson forced the Cherokee Indians out of Georgia and into Oklahoma, leading to the devastating Trail of Tears in which thousands of Native Americans died.”

    Andrew Jackson said something along the lines of,”John Marshall has made his decision… Now let him enforce it.”

  14. I seriously doubt that the republicans will nominate a black man or any female as their presidential candidate.

  15. He has an md by his name, therefore he has more relevance. Just ask Rand Paul, he dropped the senator and replaced it with md, just for that purpose. Then they speak and embrace the stupidity.

  16. He looks just like a guy that my little brother used to chase to his porch daily, way back when. I really can’t be sure until I check his back to see if the white stripe’s still there.[wink]

  17. This guy should perform brain surgery on himself, because he has lost his damn mind. The more he speaks the less I take him serious. He should stop before he becomes a bigger joke. Hey Ben, shut up you’re embarrassing yourself.

  18. I wasn’t going to vote for Ben Carson, anyway, because of his nutty stand on how straight men in prison become gay, et. cetera. But I’m really not going to vote for him, now, because he should have known about the three branches of government and how they operate in tandem and in apposition when necessary. Geez, he should have learned this in fourth grade civics class.

  19. You used intelligent Republicans in the same sentence. I think that constitutes an oxymoron!

  20. We know he was a *surgeon* — that’s different from being a medical doctor, btw. One memorizes where things are and cuts them out, the other applies reason and brainpower to treat — and we know that he was hired by Johns Hopkins.

    What we DON’T know is exactly how “successful” he was and whether or not Johns Hopkins regretted its choice.

    This numbskull’s comments give us some clues, however.

  21. Another useless GOP candidate. Someone tell him to quit now. We do not need idiots to just fill up airtime or give talk shows ammunition to talk about

  22. Yeah, they showed their sincerity with the speed they used in dropping their first and only Black chairman of the GOP! He was gone so fast, I can’t remember his name!

  23. Republicans scream about upholding the Constitution and then they open their mouths and prove they have no idea what is even in the Constitution. These people are doctors and lawyers. Where did they get these degrees? Online? How can you even think about running for the highest office in The United States without having even an inkling of an idea of what is in our most important legal document, The United States Constitution? Other than The Second Amendment, Republicans are clueless about this document and they don’t even really understand The Second Amendment.

  24. The right-wing mind set is a wonder to behold. As told to me by a very sweet lady that she understood that some people are Gay. That she has a Gay Grandson, a sweet, gentlemanly young man and she prays everyday that he will meet a young lady who will understand his affliction so he will have someone who loves him. I asked what about him finding someone he loves and loves him in return? Her reply floored me – that was what she was talking about. In time he will learn to love her for her understanding. What?

    And, that is why the thinking processes of the right-wing are a wonder to behold. It requires zero logic.

  25. Ummmmmm…… President Bush had more Blacks in high level positions than any other President in history, including President Obama; so your point is ridiculous. [WINK]

  26. Bible thumping repugs are the lowest in terms of gullability and common sense. And those who are doing god’s will as carson and others are saying are grifters trying to fleece the dumbass flock.

  27. Mr. Carson’s statement concerning the U.S. President and the Supreme Court begs the question: Why would President Obama wish to defy the inevitable stance of the Supreme Court that Gay Marriages are legal?

    Technically speaking, no one is going to be forced into a gay marriage; The Supreme Court’s ruling notwithstanding.

    Fascinating Logic there Mr. Carson.

    Why are there no Conservatives holding Mr. Carson’s feet to the fire for his commentary?

  28. Carson is espousing the doctrine of divine rights of kings as does Rand Paul. Neither cares for representative constitutional government.

    They would like to strip citizens of their constitutional rights and make us all subjects that have no recourse against legislative despotism. James Madison wrote: “An ELECTIVE DESPOTISM was not the government we fought for.” (Federalist Paper 48)

    This is all typical GOP mentality.

  29. My guess is that he is simply a political opportunist who knows how to pander to fools. Unfortunately, once he took that path, he quickly became one the fools himself.

  30. “There is inherent in all men a devil and an angel who tests him and tries him. We sought not to placate either, but to bring to our nation a place where a man can struggle against his baser notions and seek his better angels.”

    “A place that is not a stranger to any worship, but is instead, standing to the side and allowing faith to run itself, and assuring it does not try to run away with our government. For one faith that does, there will be others to challenge it. Devils or angels may write their own edicts, we wrote for neither so that both can be free to contend; so both would be outside the structure of government and influence none of it.”

    Attributed to John Madison, 1830

  31. You all would do well to look up Andrew Jackson’s bank veto in 1832 (the president second-guessing the Supreme Court’s opinion of constitutionality) or Lincoln’s comments on Dred Scott during the Lincoln Douglass debates (a future president saying, flat out, that he would refuse to obey a Supreme Court decision he found to be mistaken or immoral).

    Education is a wonderful thing. And snarkiness should be reserved for those who actually know what they are talking about.

  32. The irony. People using Andrew Jackson a man who committed genocide as a role model. You cant make this shit up

  33. Does this guy realize he’s BLACK??? Doesn’t he know that as long as he’s BLACK and in the white house, according to the GOP and Tea Party, he get NO SAY SO IN ANYTHING!!!!!

  34. The Point- if you’re gonna claim that all folks are idiots due to the majority acting like fools- then you’re a fool.

    One other thing- Religion is a choice. No one is born a Christian or Muslim or whatever.

    Skin color isn’t a choice.

  35. My Dad is the same way – after President Obama’s first election, he said to me,” this guy is going to bankrupt America and we have to stay engaged in war to keep the economy moving”. This was 2008! I asked him “this economy?” He didnt answer.

    He no longer “advises” me on politics.

  36. VOTE 4 ME – BTM
    If you vote for me – BTM
    I promise to ignore the
    Koch Doctrine of Republican Behavior and Rules for Canasta
    and smoke a joint with young Mr. Carson, right smack dab in the Oval Office – and he can call it torture if he wants to.

  37. Even IF Carson is referring to the times where Jackson, Jefferson, and a few others have defied SCOTUS, those were times in which Judicial Review wasn’t really a thing at the time.

    It wasn’t until a little later that SCOTUS’s interpretation of laws was wholly recognized.

  38. Typical GOP statement!

    Just imagine what it would be like if a republican was “elected” president? There would be chaos!

    Such a statement as Ben Carson’s makes me wonder if the GOP wants to de-regulate, why have traffic lights? Thus everyone could drive as they please without the rules of the road!

    With all due respect to jackasses, Ben Carson is a jackass!

  39. Who ever said he was a **successful** neurosurgeon? While the man obviously has a lot of ‘nerve’, he doesn’t appear to have much in the way of brain (read as “intelligence”) which is definitely required in the successful practice of any branch of medicine. [WINK]

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