[Rushtalk] White House responds to secession petitions

John A. Quayle blueoval57 at verizon.net
Sat Jan 12 16:12:57 MST 2013



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White House responds to secession petitions





'As much as we value a healthy debate, we don't let that debate tear us apart'

Published: 4 hours ago
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  by <http://www.wnd.com/author/dzahn/>Drew Zahn 
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Drew Zahn is a former pastor who cut his editing 
teeth as a member of the award-winning staff of 
Leadership, Christianity Today's professional 
journal for church leaders. He is the editor of 
seven books, including 
<http://www.amazon.com/Movie-Based-Illustrations-Preaching-Teaching-1/dp/0310248329?_encoding=UTF8&tag=wnd-20&ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&qid=1324175163&camp=1789&sr=8-1&creative=9325>Movie-Based 
Illustrations for Preaching & Teaching, which 
sparked his ongoing love affair with film and his 
weekly WND column, "Popcorn and a 
(world)view."<http://www.wnd.com/2013/01/white-house-responds-to-secession-petitions/#>More 

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The White House has responded to the hundreds of 
thousands of Americans who signed digital 
petitions asking permission for states to peacefully secede from the union.

In a nutshell, the answer is no.

“As much as we value a healthy debate,” writes 
Jon Carson, director of the White House’s Office 
of Public Engagement, in 
<https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/response/our-states-remain-united>in 
the official response, “we don’t let that debate tear us apart.”

<http://www.wnd.com/2012/11/louisiana-residents-petition-to-secede/>WND 
was the first news outlet in the nation to report 
when a Louisiana man began a petition on the 
White House’s 
<https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/>“We the 
People” website, asking permission for his state to peacefully secede.

<https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/peacefully-grant-state-louisiana-withdraw-united-states-america-and-create-its-own-new-government/1wrvtngl>The 
Louisiana petition quoted from the Declaration of 
Independence: “‘Governments are instituted among 
Men, deriving their just powers from the consent 
of the governed, that whenever any Form of 
Government becomes destructive of these ends, it 
is the Right of the People to alter or abolish 
it, and institute new Government.’”

According to the guidelines of the “We the 
People” website, when a petition reaches 25,000 
signatures, the White House has pledged to put 
the petition on a queue for response.

Louisiana’s petition quickly reached that 
threshold and was followed by similar petitions 
from all 50 states, several of which also topped the 25,000 mark.

Counter-petitions were also created, including 
<https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/deport-everyone-signed-petition-withdraw-their-state-united-states-america/dmQl1bXL>one 
that called on the White House to “deport 
everyone that signed a petition to withdraw their 
state from the United States Of America.” That 
petition also cleared the 25,000-signature hurdle.

The official White House response is listed as a 
response to all of the secession petitions, pro and con.

“Our founding fathers established the 
Constitution of the United States ‘in order to 
form a more perfect union’ through the hard and 
frustrating but necessary work of 
self-government,” the response reasoned. “They 
enshrined in that document the right to change 
our national government through the power of the 
ballot – a right that generations of Americans 
have fought to secure for all. But they did not 
provide a right to walk away from it.

“As President Abraham Lincoln explained in his 
first inaugural address in 1861, ‘in 
contemplation of universal law and of the 
Constitution the Union of these States is 
perpetual,’” the response continued. “In the 
years that followed, more than 600,000 Americans 
died in a long and bloody civil war that 
vindicated the principle that the Constitution 
establishes a permanent union between the States. 
And shortly after the Civil War ended, the 
Supreme Court confirmed that ‘[t]he Constitution, 
in all its provisions, looks to an indestructible 
Union composed of indestructible States.’”

<https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/response/our-states-remain-united>The 
full response can be read here.

The question of secession’s constitutionality has 
been debated, indeed, since long before Abraham 
Lincoln’s time, and has remained debated even 
since the Texas v. White Supreme Court decision 
cited in the White House response.

WND columnists Walter E. Williams and Alan Keyes, 
for example, have both penned columns arguing 
secession is perfectly constitutional. Williams’ 
column, 
<http://www.wnd.com/2012/11/asking-permission-of-obama-to-secede/>available 
here, cites historical evidence from both the 
Founding Fathers and the Civil War era. Alan 
Keyes’ column, 
<http://www.wnd.com/2012/11/asking-permission-of-obama-to-secede/>available 
here, argues God-given rights cannot be trumped 
by man-made law, Supreme Court decisions or civil war.
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