Is Ted Kennedy’s knighting unconstitutional?

Is Ted Kennedy’s knighting unconstitutional?

It appears to be. Rob Port brings up this little tidbit from Article 1, Section 9 of the United States Constitution:

No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince or foreign State.

So, if I’m reading this correctly, Ted Kennedy has a choice. He can accept the O.B.E., and step down from public office, or he can refuse the O.B.E., and continue as a United States senator. That is, of course, assuming that he wants to be in keeping with the Constitution, and knowing liberals, if this is even ever brought up he’ll likely just make some bullshit remark about how the Constitution is a “living” document.

Now, I don’t think that just because Ted Kennedy gets knighted, we’re going to slowly creep towards a monarchy. I do think, however, that an American office holder should never accept something like this. The motto, after all, is For God and empire. And where do Ted Kennedy’s allegiances lie: to our Constitution, or to the Queen of England? I know that it’s just a symbolic knighting, but all the same — if Kennedy has any respect for the laws this country was built upon, he’ll turn this down.

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  • Shannon in AZ says:

    Rob doesn’t have a link to the original article which is a bit disappointing. He is making an issue of something without checking on the history. Per one link I found, the knighting was HONORARY.

    Honorary knighting has precedent and has been done before. General Norman Schwarzkopf was also knighted as were 8 military officers before him.

    In fact, reading the UPI article in full, you will see it mentions “that fewer than 100 U.S. citizens have received honorary knighthoods since the queen took the throne in 1952. American honorees have included former presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, and Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf.”

  • WayneB says:

    Not to mention that it would be just another step along the path of doing away with the Constitution altogether.

  • Steve L. says:

    Maybe we can trick Britain into keeping him when he goes over for the award.

  • JW M says:

    Just what has Teddy done to merit knighthood? Following WWII a number of US officers were knighted (with permission of US Congress) but they had rendered a service to the Crown.

  • CaptDMO says:

    Actually, Mr. Kennedy has NOT been “knighted”.
    Only the queen of England is in a position to personally do that.
    Still, the honorary “knighthood” falls under the same A1 Sec.9.
    He has no “title”, and such an honorarium holds NO VALUE, nor
    allows ANY assumptions of priveleges ANYWHERE on US soil.

    Yes, Mr. Kennedy could graciously decline, honor and protect The Constitution as he has SWORN to do, or he could just continue to maintain the traditional Kennedy family values-ceremoniously and abruptly stripped of his office and citizenship of course.

    No need to fall for the old church trick of bestowing a “blessing” upon the king. The “crown” simply isn’t qualified to “bestow” shit on ANY American wishing to keep their citizenship. Of course, just like Ms. Pelosi’s ascension to “speaker”, I too figure that Democrat legislators will find cause for another “special exception” to established rules.

  • Max says:

    CaptDMO, how was Speaker Pelosi’s rise to her office out of any order, calling for a “special exception?”

  • Rob Farrington says:

    Steve, we don’t want him!

    Then again, he might do pretty well in our Olympic swimming team…

  • Mark says:

    Last time I looked murder was against the law but that didn’t stop lil Teddy from performing it. A reprobate and a lace-curtain paddy to boot.

  • Cylar says:

    “Is Ted Kennedy’s knighting unconstitutional?”

    Short answer: Yes.

    The Federal government is doing something not permitted by the Constitution? Get outta here! No way!

  • Yes it is. I concur with Cylar – it doesn’t surprise me that it is getting overlooked.

  • Scott Jacobs says:

    Is Ted Kennedy’s knighting unconstitutional?

    Well, technically, it could be…

    No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince or foreign State.

    So he CAN accept it and be completely within the bounds of the Constitution…

    And frankly, it would be completely ignorant for Congress to say no. Dislike the man all you want, but it’s the Queen of Freaking England, ffs. Since they are non-hereditary titles she grants anyways, I see absolutely no problem with congress going “sure, what the hell…”

    I mean, I can think of a HELL of a lot of folks I would personally consider better suited for such an honor, but again, what the hell is the harm in allowing this sort of honor?

  • Mark says:

    The harm is that here you have a man who publicly supported NORAID who, in turn, raised money to fund the IRA. In case anyone has forgotten, they are the Irish equivalent of Al Qaeda. If this man had any shred of decency left, he would politely refuse this honor. This is akin to the president giving Osama the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

  • Instinct says:

    Mark, the key point of your sentence is “any shred of decency” which we already know he doesn’t.

    And why does the phrase ‘just one more drunken knight’ come to mind

  • Scott Jacobs says:

    Mark, those are issues for the British crown.

    And your analogy fails on so many different levels…

  • Mark says:

    Ted Kennedy is a man who openly mocked the British government, stood shoulder to shoulder with Gerry Adams. These actions helped loosen the purse strings of gullible Irish-Americans to pour money into Noraid. To take this honor reeks of disingenuousness.

    “Mark, those are issues for the British crown.”

    I doubt very much sir whether this was wholly the idea of the Queen herself. More like something Brown would throw up to kiss butt and hope Kennedy would intercede on Britain’s behalf.

  • Jon H says:

    ” In case anyone has forgotten, they are the Irish equivalent of Al Qaeda.”

    We should be so lucky.

  • Jamie says:

    Since Ted (I Killed A Girl)Kennedy is employed by the US Senate, the body that approves gifts or decorations is the Senate Ethics Committee. We all know how well the Senate Ethics Committee cares about ethics, especially with Barbara Boxer as Chairman.

  • Steve says:

    No, his knighthood is not unconstitutional. The prohibition in the Constitution has been from the beginning one of preventing split loyalties. Thus, a traditional knighthood could not be conferred on a sitting US Senator, as it comes with grants of “Title” and “Emolument.”

    Instead, the Queen bestows an honorary knighthood only after Congress passes a joint resolution allowing the act. The recipient is not entitled to be called “Sir,” does not receive a stipend or lands, but is allowed to add K.B.E. (Knight of the British Empire) after their signature. An honorary knighthood carries no title or emolument and it is mere courtesy and respect for tradition that the joint resolution is passed.

  • NB says:

    Good Lord. Ted Kennedy being knighted? That would be like Al Gore winning a Nobel Prize? Preposterous!

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