At The Washington Note, Steve Clemons writes that these senators-elect, some of whom campaigned on the claim that lawmakers in Washington are running roughshod over the Constitution, should read the 20th Amendment. "According to the 20th Amendment to the Constitution," Clemons writes, "the respective terms of US Senators and US Representatives ends at noon on January 3rd."
But in their letter to Reid, senators-elect Roy Blunt, Ron Johnson, Rob Portman, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio conclude, "On Election Day we were elected to represent the constituents of our respective states in the Senate. Out of respect for our states' voters, we believe it would be improper for the Senate to consider the New START Treaty or any other treaty in a lame duck session prior to January 3, 2011."
Clemons blasts the politicians, who will not hold office until Jan. 3 for their efforts, saying they are "extralegal, irresponsible, and unconstitutional."
"Rand Paul," Clemons states, "you owe many of your supporters a note of regret for having agreed to sign on to this letter giving your strict Constitutionalist views."
As has been noted by some groups, such as the Constitutional Accountability Center (CAC), some Tea-Party-backed candidates, such as Paul, have, however, shown a tendency to decide what parts of the Constitution are worthy of fidelity and those that are not so worthy. For example, some Tea Party groups and candidates have revealed that they have little use for the 17th Amendment, which allows people, not state legislatures, to elect senators, and the birthright citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment.