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International treaties trumping domestic law?

The United Kingdom voted yesterday to leave the European Union, a move that shocked many and precipitated the resignation of British Prime Minister David Cameron. Driving the campaign to leave was one simple idea: residents of the UK should make laws for the UK.

Non-elected bureaucrats who run the EU should not have the power to create laws and regulations for British citizens. The United Kingdom should be sovereign.

"I hope this victory brings down this failed project and leads us to a Europe of sovereign nation states, trading together, being friends together, cooperating together, and let's get rid of the flag, the anthem, Brussels, and all that has gone wrong," said Nigel Farage, a leader of the movement to leave the EU. "Let June 23 go down in our history as our independence day."

Unfortunately, though the United States isn’t in the EU, we still have to worry about international agreements trumping domestic law. Several years ago, a treaty known as the “UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities” would have surrendered U.S. sovereignty to unelected UN bureaucrats and superseded U.S. laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act.

An Article Convention of States can propose a constitutional amendment that prohibits international treaties from governing the domestic law of the United States. An amendment such as this has been on our list of possible amendments since the Project’s founding, and it will be increasingly important as threats to our national sovereignty continue to come from international, non-elected bodies.