Last month, GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum got into a heated exchange with Rachel Maddow about his statement that the Supreme Court doesn’t “have the final say on anything,” including abortion rights and LGBT equality. He attempted to clarify his position at a campaign event in Iowa last week, explaining that while he is fine with the Supreme Court having judicial review powers, the president and Congress should simply ignore decisions that they think are wrong.
In comments captured on video by the conservative blog Caffeinated Thoughts, Santorum said, “There’s nothing in the Constitution that gives the Supreme Court the right or the duty or the obligation to determine what is constitutional and what is not.”
“Marbury v. Madison is a Supreme Court case where they granted themselves that authority,” he continued. “And for a couple of hundred years, roughly, we have seen that deference given to the court. I think the court is the right place to make these types of constitutional judgments. But what happens if the court makes an unconstitutional judgment? What happens if the court itself violates the Constitution? Is there a remedy?"
“Our founders clearly wanted it to be very hard to change the Constitution,” he said. “That’s why when you see the court change the Constitution in an unconstitutional fashion, in other words…amend the Constitution by creating something that’s not there, they’ve short-circuited something that was supposed to be very hard to do, and there should be some remedy of saying, ‘No, you can’t do that.’ And what is that? Well, what is that is the president or the Congress saying, ‘You’re acting unconstitutionally and we’re not going to pay attention to that law, we’re not going to pay attention to your ruling.’”