Ron Paul's Texas Straight Talk - A weekly Column

May 13, 2002


The American people won a great victory last week in the ongoing battle to preserve our national sovereignty. On Monday, the administration formally announced President Bush’s bold decision to withdraw the United States from the UN International Criminal Court (ICC) treaty. UN bureaucrats have been working quietly for several years to create the ICC, with the ultimate goal of installing an international tribunal that claims jurisdiction over every human on the planet- and judicial supremacy over our own Supreme Court. Given the steady progress of ICC planners to date in convincing about 60 nations to ratify the treaty, the American withdrawal represents a stunning setback for those intent on establishing an international legal system that undermines our Constitution- and a rare but important triumph for American national interests.

On the heels of the Bush administration decision, I introduced legislation aimed at prohibiting the use of taxpayer funds for the unconstitutional tribunal. I wanted to make sure that Congress took advantage of the moment and supported the administration by ensuring that your tax dollars aren’t used to pay for another UN scheme, especially one that the our President expressly rejected. My bill was supported by the House leadership, and several of my congressional colleagues joined as co-sponsors. The bill, which expressed that Congress should prohibit appropriations for the ICC, passed overwhelmingly as an amendment to a larger defense bill.

We should be perfectly clear about what the ICC really represents. The UN does not respect our domestic laws or our national sovereignty. On the contrary, UN ministers view our laws as obstacles to their goals. It is no exaggeration to say that the UN wants to create international laws that override our domestic gun, labor, environment, and tax laws- just to name a few. In fact, the UN states its goals quite openly on its website. We should remember that the ICC, like the UN itself, will be inherently political. Although the court purports to address only criminal matters, it will serve to establish a permanent international legal apparatus used to enforce an ever-growing list of international laws. The ICC can only further erode national sovereignty by undermining the authority of national courts and overriding national laws.

We must reassert that the Supreme Court is the court of highest authority for our nation, and that every American citizen enjoys protections guaranteed in the Bill of Rights. President Bush gave notice to the international community last week that the United States will not participate in a global court that undermines the checks and balances of our Constitution. He deserves our praise and our support for bravely standing against the ICC and against UN bureaucrats who have so little regard for our laws. Congress should follow his lead and respect the Constitution by refusing to send even one penny of taxpayer funds to the ICC bureaucrats.