Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Post Oath Statement Precedent

Here in Madison, the State Capital is a couple blocks down the street from the City-County Building, so in a sense the “B” level politicians have their arena while the “C” and “D” level politicians have their playground. The problem is the playground apparently has no adult supervision.

Council OKs protest oath: The Madison City Council voted 14-4 Tuesday to offer those taking an oath of public office a formal way to protest Wisconsin's new constitutional ban on gay marriage. … The resolution, passed after 45 minutes of debate, allows officials to make a supplemental statement to the oath, noting they took it under protest because of their disagreement with the constitutional amendment passed by 59 percent of Wisconsin voters in November.

The proponents argue since they are not modifying the text of the Oath of Office there is no reason to be concerned when they subsequently declare their support of the constitution is under protest. How will this precedent play out? Well, there is this hypothetical situation:
I, Hillary Rodham Clinton, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. However, I take this oath under protest because of the reprehensible inclusion of amendment 2 and amendment 22, and will work to eliminate these sections from the Constitution and work to prevent any discriminatory impacts from their application.
Of the 4 City of Madison aldermen voting against this scenario only one is running for re-election. Mayor Dave Cieslewicz does want another term and he is proudly on record as a co-sponsor of this supplemental statement prerogative.