Constitutional Rights

Government can be freedom’s best friend when it protects citizens’ constitutional rights. Here’s how the Goldwater Institute is ensuring your rights are protected.

<p>Government can be freedom’s best friend when it protects citizens’ constitutional rights. Here’s how the Goldwater Institute is ensuring your rights are protected. </p>

Big victories often render the victors irrelevant. When Dr. Jonas Salk discovered a vaccine for polio in 1955, this landmark achievement for mankind meant the army of scientists who had been fighting to find a cure had to look for new work.

We can only hope that the same fate will befall the researchers who today are working to cure AIDS, cancer and a host of other human ills.

Seventy years after the end of Prohibition, it is illegal for Arizona consumers to purchase wine directly from out-of-state wineries.

Arizona is one of two dozen states that prohibit the direct shipment of out-of-state wines to in-state consumers. Although the number of nationwide wineries and available wines has increased by over 500 percent over the past 30 years, wholesalers continue to dictate the availability of out-of-state wines to Arizona consumers.

Arizonans Concerned About Smoking is pushing a statewide ban on smoking in private restaurants and bars. The group argues that a ban is necessary to protect the rights of nonsmokers to be in smoke-free environments. But ban proponents misunderstand the nature of rights in a free society.

Imagine a controversial legal case involving the free exercise of religion. A case with far-reaching implications throughout the United States, involving prominent political figures and emotional rhetoric.

Raising Arizona

In the 1980's TV series Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, galactic explorer Arthur Dent discovers that the ultimate answer to "life, the universe, and everything" is 42.

While the Goldwater Institute does not claim to have solved any of the deep mysteries of the cosmos, we do have "42 Ideas for a Free and Prosperous Arizona," that can be implemented this year to expand our freedom and economic prosperity. For example:

The Cato Institute and Goldwater Institute filed an amicus curiae brief on behalf of Belinda Dupuy in Dupuy v. McEwen.

According to the Cato Institute:

Executive Summary

When they take office, Arizona legislators promise to uphold the U.S. and Arizona Constitutions. The question is whether legislators, individually and collectively, fulfill their duty once in office.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

With the Arizona Legislature considering nearly 1,500 bills, memorials, and resolutions each session, it is difficult to know whether legislators individually, or as a whole, are acting within the parameters of the Arizona Constitution. Like the U.S. Constitution, the Arizona Constitution delineates the purpose and scope of  government and enumerates the rights of the people. The primacy of individual rights and its corollary, a government of limited and defined powers, is established in the opening declaration:

The Arizona Constitution declares that "governments . . . are established to protect and maintain individual rights." As the lawmaking branch of government, the legislature has the potential to be the greatest guardian or the greatest offender of those constitutionally enshrined rights.

Sen. Barry Goldwater best articulated his legislative mission when he said, "if I should be attacked for neglecting my constituents 'interests,' I shall reply that I was informed their main interest is liberty"

All too often, liberty and its attendant prosperity are jeopardized as government takes wealth and opportunities from individuals to privilege special interests and favored groups. As the segment of government explicitly charged with lawmaking authority, the legislature is frequently the greatest offender.

Pages