61 Tul. L. Rev. 979 (1986-1987)
Law of the Constitution

handle is hein.journals/tulr61 and id is 1005 raw text is: THE LAW OF THE CONSTITUTION

EDWIN MEESE III*
As you know, recently, in the East Room of the White
House, a new Chief *Justice and a new Justice of the Supreme
Court were sworn in-William Rehnquist and Antonin Scalia,
respectively. After both men had taken their oaths to support
the Constitution, President Reagan reflected on what he called
the inspired wisdom of our Constitution:
Hamilton, Jefferson and all the Founding Fathers recognized
that the Constitution is the supreme and ultimate expression
of the will of the American people. They saw that no one in
office could remain above it, if freedom were to survive through
the ages. They understood that, in the words of James
Madison, if the sense in which the Constitution was accepted
and ratified by the nation ... [is] not the guide in expounding
it, there can be no security for a . . . faithful exercise of its
powers.'
In concluding, the President repeated a warning given by Daniel
Webster more than a century ago. It is a thought especially
worth remembering as we approach the bicentennial anniversary
of our Constitution:
Miracles do not cluster.. .. Hold on to the Constitution of the
United States of America and to the Republic for which it
stands-what has happened once in 6,000 years may never
happen again. Hold on to your Constitution, for if the Ameri-
can Constitution shall fall there will be anarchy throughout the
world.2
During its nearly two hundred years, the Constitution,
which Gladstone pronounced the most wonderful work ever
* Attorney General of the United States.
1. Address by President Reagan at the Investiture of Chief Justice William H.
Rehnquist and Associate Justice Antonin Scalia (Sept. 26, 1986), reprinted in THE FED-
ERALIST SocIETY: THE GREAT DEBATE: INTERPRETING OUR WRITTEN CONSTITUTION 55
(1986) (quoting James Madison's Letter to Henry Lee (June 25, 1824)).
2. Id. at 56 (quoting Daniel Webster); see generally 15 THE WRITINGS AND
SPEECHES OF DANIEL WEBSTER 520 (1903).

979

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