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Arkansas Society of Freethinkers Message Board Local Breaking News › Lawmakers File Bill To Guard Against Foreign Law

Lawmakers File Bill To Guard Against Foreign Law

Dave B.
user 13155367
Sherwood, AR
Post #: 49
Lawmakers File Bill To Guard Against Foreign Law

By Kelly MacNeil KUAR FM 89.1 Little Rock
Jan 20th 2011

Several members of the Arkansas legislature have introduced a measure to keep courts and agencies from basing decisions on any foreign law.

State Senator Cecile Bledsoe, the primary sponsor of the bill, says the bill isn’t aimed only at any particular foreign doctrine but is intended to preserve the rights granted under the U.S. and Arkansas Constitutions.

Bledsoe gives the example of one family court in New Jersey that took Islamic customs into account in withholding a restraining order.

"[Courts in other states] have sided with foreign law against their citizens. And we're saying before that happens in Arkansas, the courts need to understand what the legislature asks of them."

The bill was drafted with language from the Public Policy Alliance, which says it intends “to protect American citizens’ constitutional rights against the infiltration and incursion of foreign laws… especially Islamic Shariah Law.”

PDF file of the bill
Dave B.
user 13155367
Sherwood, AR
Post #: 50
This sort of grandstanding was first done in Oklahoma a few months ago. The politicians intent was to impress upon their Christian constituents their firm stand against Islamic law making its way into our God- fearin' state. Ironically, they don't seem to realize that this law would also exclude those ten ancient Israeli laws supposedly chiseled on stone tablets.

Oh yeah, here's The Real Ten Commandments by the way...

Dave B.
user 13155367
Sherwood, AR
Post #: 54
News Update...

Bill to ban judges from considering foreign law stalls
Posted on 02 February 2011

By Rob Moritz
Arkansas News Bureau

LITTLE ROCK — Opponents of a bill to bar state courts from considering foreign law in deciding state cases argued today that the measure would hinder Arkansas companies doing business with foreign firms.

Senate Bill 97 stalled in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The sponsor, Sen. Cecile Bledsoe, R-Rogers, told the committee the legislation was not aimed at any particular foreign country or religion, but was intended to preserve rights granted under the U.S. and state constitutions.

Sen. Robert Thompson, D-Paragould, said he thought the bill was too broad because it would affect business contracts as well as family court cases. “You’re using a sledge hammer right here where maybe you need something a little more focused,” Thompson said.

Sen. Jim Luker, D-Wynne, said state courts “are currently not obligated to swallow whole foreign judgments,” adding that Bledsoe’s bill “has the potential for doing a lot of mischief.”

Bledsoe temporarily pulled the bill from consideration. She said she would amend it to remove any references to businesses and bring it back to the panel, perhaps later this month.

After the meeting, Bledsoe and Fayetteville lawyer Steve Lowrey, who spoke for the bill, noted a family custody case in New Jersey where a judge took into account one of the parent’s Islamic customs when withholding a restraining order.

They said the measure was not targeting any religion, but that it was designed to make sure that U.S. law is considered in court cases, not foreign law.

Link to full story
George S
user 13502116
Little Rock, AR
Post #: 54
We will have to keep an eye on this and give it our full support.
Shariah Law has become a problem for some European countries and the UK.
We should not allow religious law(s) to supercede our secular laws.

A former member
Post #: 19
I think it's intended to maintain the United States and by Arkansas' exceptionalism by nullifying laws, decisions, agreements that those in state government don't agree with.

This is old extremist tenet of states rights, "Nullification" in a new disguise. Short of seceding from the Union, the "states rights" movement asserted that the state's sovereignty trumped that of the federal government. Well, that was settled 150 years ago, correct?

What about international
treaties regarding human rights

There are 7-9 principal treaties circulating about human rights. The U.S. has ratified only 2 of them.

What if the U.S. actually signs an accord on global warming? Could be real progress, right? but not if the Arkansas executive decides that such a treaty doesn't apply to the coal plants in Arkansas because that conflicts with our public policy about providing energy to its citizens!

It could also be used as a pretext for overturning the recent health care reforms that are the subjects of many lawsuits nationwide (each side with its conflicting rulings to claim). Why worry about lawsuits when the Arkansas executive could just say that it doesn't sit well with Arkansas' settled laws, and make the law "null" for Arkansas?

You can see where this leads to.
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