We don’t need no stinkin’ Constitution
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“Sometimes we have to step outside the boundaries of the Constitution to get things done.”Alfonso Ortiz has refused to sign the ordinance.
Because, “The way it reads, it will supersede everything — our city charter, state and federal laws,” the mayor told the Journal Santa Fe this week. “It’s one of those things where the demand is unreasonable.”
The city attorney agrees. “To sign a document that declares those sacred documents — the city charter, the New Mexico Constitution and the US Constitution — are inapplicable would violate the oath of office [the mayor] swore to uphold,” Dave Romero told the Journal, adding that most people in the town are against hydraulic fracturing but “hidden within the ordinance are radical, inappropriate statements that essentially claim that no other entity governs when it comes to this particular ordinance … It takes away rights of due process and property.”
Enter Paula Hern, a board member of the Community for Clean Water Air and Earth, which drafted the anti-fracking ordinance with the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, based in Pennsylvania. The environmentalists are frustrated with the mayor’s refusal with Hern telling the Journal:
“What people don’t understand is sometimes we have to step outside the boundaries of the Constitution to get things done. Laws are made to protect corporations and we need laws that protect Mother Earth — earth, air and water.”
Hern and her group plan to encourage the county commission in San Miguel County to adopt a similar measure.
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