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The Constitution in Exile: How the Federal Government Has Seized Power by Rewriting the Supreme Law of the Land Paperback – March 18, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-1595550705 ISBN-10: 1595550704 Edition: 0th
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Napolitano, New Jersey Superior Court Judge and analyst for Fox News, explains how the federal government has manipulated the Constitution to take power from the states and the people. Written for a general audience, Napolitano's book also includes a brief history of the founding of the United States, the Bill of Rights, the specific powers granted to Congress in the Constitution and an explanation of relevant legal precedents. Napolitano's nonpartisan apprehension toward a strong central government is clear as he takes issue with both Democratic and Republican legislative initiatives, including the Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1992, the Patriot Act, attempted FCC regulation of HDTV sets and the retention of Yasser Hamdi and Jose Padilla. However, the book is disappointingly sparse on ways to fix the problems he decries; after 240 pages of citing issue after shortcoming after perversion of founding fathers' intents, he hurries through a six point plan (in just over a page) that involves rewriting the Constitution so the preamble begins "We the States," abolishing the popular election of senators and allowing states to secede from the union and enjoy territory status sans "a federal boot on their throats." His conversational tone and historical perspective make his argument accessible to general readers who are interested in current events but turned off by wonky pundits.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Andrew P. Napolitano is Senior Judicial Analyst for Fox News Channel and the author of Constitutional Chaos, The Constitution in Exile, A Nation of Sheep, Dred Scott's Revenge, and Lies the Government Told You. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (March 18, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595550704
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595550705
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.9 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #508,588 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
When one sees Judge Napolitano on the Fox News Channel or hear him on the radio providing excellent analysis of the law and issues of the day, one would be forgiven for not suspecting him to hold such radical notions about our Constitution, history, or his own preferences for changes in our society. No doubt about it, he is a radical and it is a refreshing sort of radicalism because what he is after is the Constitution and form of government framed by our Founders. This book lays out his views on how our nation went off the path we started down with the Constitution in 1789. It is easy to beat the drum for getting back to the Constitution, as many conservatives do, but it is another to be as clear and forthright about what it means.

The Constitution is in Exile because its original intent and its governing power in our laws has been banished through legislative power grabs that went unchecked by the judiciary and then by a judiciary that grabbed power from the legislative and executive branches. The author is also concerned about abuses of power by the executive branch, as Napolitano sees them, during the Lincoln administration and in our present administration with the USA PATRIOT act.

First, let's get rid of one phony argument about the Constitution and slavery and its moral invalidation of the Constitution. Yes, the Founders compromised on slavery, but that doesn't mean that everyone supported it or that it wasn't a monstrous institution that was at odds with our founding principles. It was. However, the compromise does not mean the Constitution is invalid or should be ignored. It is still our founding document and unless its stated process of amendment is followed, the document should bind the very government it authorizes to its stated principles and powers.
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33 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Brian Kerecz on June 30, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Judge Andrew Napolitano cares about the US Constitution. A lot. And he is concerned that both individual and state rights which have been eroded already, and are being abridged more, will not come back. This concern comes through loud and clear in each and every chapter.

To Judge Napolitano, the US Constitution is not a "living" thing; rather, it is a document which is unassailable and incontrovertible in its protection of basic human rights, rights which are immutable and which do not change from day to day nor from Century to Century. Napolitano begins the book with a primer on the Constitution and the events surrounding its drafting. And early on, we see that the Founding Fathers were very cognizant of the threats faced by the union, yet they did not enact laws which went against the Natural Rights of man. Often in difficult or scary times it can be all too easy to enact laws which seemingly protect us, but which do so at the expense of our fundamental rights (and State rights) put forth in the Constitution....and some people take advantage of this to the people's detriment.

This book will enlighten most people I think. I follow politics quite closely, and yet was unaware of many of the rights which were slowly eroding from right under our feet, (even though I knew there were many!)....I just was not aware of the scope and size. I was not even aware Lincoln suspended habeas corpus; I was always taught what a great President he was as he was behind the freeing of the slaves with the Emancipation Proclamation! Yet in a direct quote of Lincoln, he stated that he would have done **anything** to protect the union, if it meant freeing all of the slaves or even if it meant freeing none!
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54 of 59 people found the following review helpful By L. A. Kane VINE VOICE on April 19, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Who would have thought the law could be so interesting... Judge Napolitano is not only a brilliant legal scholar, but an engaging author as well. This thought provoking book is very easy to read and understand. It is also quite insightful, delving deeply into topics most of us have not thought much about until now. For example, the Federal government was created by the states not the other way around. The constitution, therefore, was written in large part to safeguard the rights of those states. The uniform drinking age specifically supersedes rights that the constitution left to the states. The same thing goes for medical standards, education, and a whole lot more, not necessarily due to any malicious or nefarious intent but simply because it has become accepted practice. Under the vision of our Founding Fathers, the Federal government was never supposed to have the sweeping authority it has acquired. Napolitano's fascinating book highlights these important issues and gives readers a lot to think about and perhaps act on in the next election... A thought provoking, interesting, and important read. Highly recommended!

Lawrence Kane
Author of Blinded by the Night, among other titles
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on August 11, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I have never written a review for Amazon but this book was so good that I felt compelled to go through the process.

The judge does an excellent job of telling us what they did not teach us in school about what our Founding Fahters intended when they began the Revolution and wrote the Constitution.

From the very beginning when Alexander Hamilton wanted to go beyond the limits of the Constitution and create a central bank to the most recent fight over the Un-Patriotic Act, he does and excellent job for both the scholar and the uninformed. He goes into great detail exploring court decisions, many of which have no relation to what the Founders intended.

This book is written in plain english as opposed to lawyer speak, so that everyone is able to understand the implications of the path that our country is on.

For the true lovers of liberty and freedom, the path is very scary indeed.
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