Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne writes plaintively that liberals should “reclaim the Constitution” — apparently from conservatives who talk about it all the time.
We agree wholeheartedly that everyone in this country should claim the Constitution, understand it and support it. Its simple wisdom holds the solutions to many of our current problems.
But as for “reclaiming” it from conservatives, we have to disagree there. The Constitution does not have the conservative flag staked in it. It’s all of ours.
If we believe it. If we accept it. If we want it to be followed. And those are huge “ifs.”
“The Constitution, after all, is neither a liberal nor a conservative document. It does not prescribe any particular policies,” writes David Azerrad of the Heritage Foundation. The Constitution’s words, Azerrad notes, merely “carefully delineate the powers of Congress, establish a federated republic and remind Congress that the ‘powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.’”
The Constitution doesn’t need to be reclaimed or retrieved from anyone. It’s been there all along, for everyone.