ACCESS TO AMERICAN COURTS BILL (ATAC)
The Reverend Jesse Jackson and I have authored and had introduced on March 18, 2021 HR 2009, the Access to American Court Bill (ATAC) for short. It is the first major constitutional and civil rights bill in the last 50 years and one of the most important ever written because it confirms for the right of all Americans to be able to sue the government to stop unconstitutional violations without its consent to do so. It seems odd that the government would even argue that to could not be sued to stop unconstitutional actions but it not only has done so recently it actually won on that point.
The Biden Administration asserted the Doctrine of Sovereign Immunity as a bar to all Americana being able to sue the government even to stop unconstitutional violations without its consent. To put this in proper context, this argument extends the Doctrine of Sovereign Immunity which up to now has only been asserted one other time in American history against a suit for a constitutional violation in US v Lee in 1888 on a case nearly identical to the Cherokee Fifth Amendment violation class action and there the government lost
The Doctrine of Sovereign Immunity is a court made rule adopted at the beginning of the country that has only up to now ever been applied to limiting suits brought under federal statutes. The rational has always been that since the Congress made the statute it can decide who can sue under it. However, we were all taught that the Congress did not write the Constitution the people did when they ratified it.
In fact, we were all taught that the Bill of Rights was demanded to be included into the Constitution before it was to be voted upon adopted to specifically make sire that the People had specific rights which the government could not take away. Does anyone believe as the Biden Administration is asserting that the Bill of Rights was passed with the Founding Fathers knowing that suits to stop unconstitutional action could be stop simply by the government refusing to consent to be sued to stop the unconstitutional acts? If so why are we hearing able this new interpretation for the first time nearly 250 years after the Constitution was adopted? Are all the previous civil rights decisions now void because the government had not consented to the being sued?
What makes this all so important is that if no one can sue to stop violations of their rights unless the government first allows them to do so then in practice they have no rights. The Reverend Jesse Jackson has stated both in radio interviews and in press releases, that the Biden Administration’s reinterpretation of Constitution , “turns the Bill of Rights Into a Bill of Mere Suggestions:”
The Biden Administration’s actions affects everyone’s rights under the Constitution. That is why an ardent liberal and civil rights proponent like Jesse Jackson has joined with a steadfast conservative attorney to together author and present the ATAC Bill. This Bill does nothing more than confirm what we have always been taught and believed, that the government can be sued to be held accountable for its unconstitutional actions without it consent.
Now the question is why did all this happen now? This seems like swatting fly with an atomic bomb. Certainly destroying the Bill of Rights just to win a lawsuit seems excessive if not paranoid.
What started as a basic albeit a large eminent domain case has turned into the first major civil rights constitutional rights case in 50 years and with a constitutional rights bill being written , introduced now before the House.
That is not hyperbole. The Cherokee are actively pursuing this in the Courts, in the Congress and in the Political arena. The Cherokee vote in the Georgia Runoff election runoff election actually decided the Senate race for Jon Ossoff which they now regret as Mr. Ossoff will now not even speak with the Cherokee which they will remember. So Be it. The Cherokee elected one senator, we can do so again not just for Georgia but Alabama as well in its 2022 election
To briefly recount what had happened. Last year, the Cherokee filed a federal court class action for the return of their land that was taken and never used under the infamous the 1835 Trail of Tears Treaty along with a fair payment for the land that’s not returned. The Cherokees had been forced to accept less than 25% of the actual value of the land while under gunpoint, in chains and in concentration camps for land that they did not want to sale or leave. Furthermore, up to 10.000 Cherokee died on the Trail of Tears, nearly one half of all Cherokee, on the 2200 miles death march in the worst winter ever recorded in the history of the continental United States. All this was done as every Cherokee is aware, in furtherance of the ethnic cleansing program promulgated under the Indian Removal Act, the first of its type in the modem age.
If you are a woman or of a tender disposition, you probably should fast forward for about a minute as I read one piece of evidence as to how mothers and children were treated on the Trail of Tears death march. I am not a real softy but I was moved when I read the account of the death of Quatie Ross, the wife of the Cherokee Chief John Ross as she froze to death after saving a small child on the Trail of Tears. Her death was described by a soldier John G. Burnett, “The Cherokee Removal Through the Eyes of a Private Soldier” Dec 11, 1890
‘On the morning of November the 17th we encountered a terrific sleet and snowstorm with freezing temperatures and from that day until we reached the end of the fateful journey on March the 26th, 1839, the sufferings of the Cherokees were awful. The trail…was a trail of death. They had to sleep in the wagons and on the ground without fire. And I have known as many as twenty two of them to die in one night of pneumonia due to ill treatment, cold, and exposure. Among this number was the beautiful Christian wife of Chief John Ross [Quatie Ross]. This noble hearted woman died … giving her only blanket for the protection of a sick child. She rode …through a blinding sleet and snow storm, developed pneumonia and died in the still hours of a bleak winter night, with her head resting on Lieutenant Greggs saddle blanket.”
LET MY PEOPLE GO HOME, was probably the plea on her lips as she died. The same plea being made to Biden today by her descendants as they seek to return to their land in a Trail of of Return, www.cherokeetrailofreturn.com
Both the House and Senate in 2009 issued resolutions apologizing for the ethnic cleansing and genocide perpetuated under the Indian Removal Act and the Trail of Tears death march but did not address the issues of the return of the unpaid and unused land. The Cherokee lawsuit was simply to get nay land over the size of 100 acres which had never been used and for which no fair payment was made. Instead of negotiating with the Cherokee or letting the court decide the merits, the Biden Administration dropped its atomic bomb destroying the Bill of Rights for all Americans
The Reverend Jackson’s ATAC Bill is the first major Constitutional Bill in 50 years. While the ATAC Bill applies to all Americans as all it does is confirm what the People have always believed – that all Americans have the right to sue the government without the government’s consent in order to to stop it’s unconstitutional actions.
President Biden had announced a few days after taking office sweeping Native American and minority programs for the redress of the harms done to them over the years. However, those programs appear not to apply to the Cherokee.
I am asking ,”Do you believe that every American has the right and is able to sue the government for violations of their constitutional rights without first needing to get government permission to sue to stop those unconstitutional acts?
I am also asking , “Do you believe that your Governor should be of a party that believe the same as you do?”
Neither President Biden nor the Democratic Party believes as you do. Jesse Jackson and I believe that all Californians should unite to stop the Biden Administration from turning the Bill of Rights into Bill of Suggestions.”
The hypocrisy of this Democratic position is highlighted even further in that it was the Cherokees who are responsible for giving the control of the Senate to the Democrats. It was the 28,000+ voting bloc of Indian justice supporters that the Cherokees at the last minute threw behind Senator Ossoff which gave him his victory. This came about because Senator Ossoff’s mother had convinced Stuart Anglin the Cherokee lead plaintiff that he was a supporter of Indian justice. The 28,000 votes if taken away from Ossoff and given to Senator Perdue instead would have given him the election.
On the national scene, Native Americans compose the largest uncommitted voting bloc in the nation. In the 2010 census, 819000 people identified themselves as having Cherokee lineage. According to the 2010 Census, 5.2 million people in the United States identified as American Indian and Alaska Native. When all Indians, their non-indian relatives and friends in support of Indian justice come together that is a bloc of over 12 million people. This bloc can go either Republican or Democratic depending on how the government handles Indian justice. If just 1300 Cherokee can deliver 28,000 votes to Democrats in a short period of time what can 819000 much less 12 million do in a year and a half? Perdue could not see this and Ossoff has ignored this fact, so Native Americans are moving on.
Governor Newsom has painted the recall as an action by conservative Republicans, Is Jesse Jackson a Republican? Is Jesse Jackson a conservative? By all definitions, Rev Jackson is a liberal and a Democrat. Yet Rev Jackson is standing for all Americans and especially Black Americans in making sure that no American loses the right to sue to stop unconstitutional violations.
If you are a minority, who do you trust on the ATAC BILL, Jesse Jackson in his attempt to preserve your right to be able to sue the government to stop unconstitutional actions or a Governor who is towing the party line and in silence thereby approving the Biden’s Administration assertion that no one including Blacks, Hispanics, LGQBT and indeed everyone else is precluded from ever suing the government to stop unconstitutional acts unless the government says first it can sued for those acts?
I as Governor of California will oppose Biden in the public arena just as I am doing in Courts and will continue to stand with Rev Jackson to stop his attempt to turn the bill of rights into a bill of mere suggestions”. If we all stand with Rev Jackson we can stop this attempt before it goes any further.