Letters to the Editor

Bjorn letter: Sen. Jim Risch

Last month, Idaho Senator Jim Risch participated in a U.S. Senate hearing on president’s constitutional authority to use nuclear weapons without legislative branch approval. During this hearing, Senator Risch demeaned the entire discussion by declaring it merely “academic.” Worse, he also attempted to diminish the relevance of the Constitution of the United States of America by declaring that it was “written in a day when things were much different than they are today, moved much slower than they are today.” He concluded his remarks by declaring that in “today’s world these decisions [about war] have to be made in moments and … Not going to be made by Congress”

Senator Risch’s statements contradict the wisdom articulated to us by founding father James Madison, who said, “In no part of the Constitution is more wisdom to be found, than in the clause which confides the question of war or peace to the legislature, and not to the executive department.”

Senator Risch’s statements also contradict the philosophy of the Idaho Republican Party, as expressed in the preamble of the party platform, which reads in part: “We believe the United States Constitution is the greatest and most inspired document to govern a nation.”

Bjorn Handeen, Coeur d’Alene