The Failure of the Seventeenth Amendment C. As we shall see, even while the amendment was still being considered by the American public, there were ample reasons to doubt its effectiveness and to question the credulity, if not the integrity, of those who proposed it.
A witness in any proceeding whatsoever in which testimony is legally required may refuse to answer any question, his answer to which might be used against him in a future criminal proceeding, or which might uncover further evidence against him.
Hitchcock 28 grand jury investigation under the Interstate Commerce Actwhere the Court by way of dictum used the broad language just quoted above from the annotations of the Constitution and specifically rejected any difference between constitutional provisions that "no person shall be compelled to accuse or furnish evidence against himself," and that "no person shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself" page et seq.
The Court was of the opinion that the substantial differences in language should not bring about any difference in meaning. Next came McCarthy v. Arndstein 29 hearing in bankruptcywhere the Court broadly held that the privilege was available in civil cases.
Then came the further stretch to cover hearings in congressional investigations. United States, Emspak v. United States, and Bart v.
Daughertys 31 and Sinclair v. Bryan 34 until revised in by an enlarged immunity act. The act of January 24,at least as then framed, would appear to have prevented the use of testimony obtained in a congressional investigation in either the federal or state courts Brown v.
Walker 35Adams v. Maryland 36because an act of Congress is the supreme law of the land binding on both state and federal courts; hence, in the pursuit of an appropriate constitutional objective wholly aside from the historically correct meaning of the Fifth Amendment Congress has it in its power to adopt the practice of the English Parliament, namely excusing no witness from giving self-incriminating testimony, but, as a matter of grace, not consenting that the incriminating testimony shall ever be used against the witness in any court, state or federal.
That "privilege," approved in the manner provided by the Constitution, has been destroyed in a manner forbidden by the Constitution.The Seventeenth Amendment was seen as part of a broader effort to make an end-run around the control that parties, machines, and special interests had over state legislatures.
This essay is part of a discussion about the Seventeenth Amendment with David . First Amendment Essay - First Amendment The modern American conception of freedom of speech comes from the principles of freedom of the press, and freedom of religion as they developed in England, starting in the seventeenth century.
Learn More. The Bill of Rights is the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. It defines citizens’ and states’ rights in relation to the Government. 17th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: Direct Election of U.S. Senators.
Americans did not directly vote for senators for the first years of the Federal Government. The Seventeenth Amendment deprived them of it and gave that suffrage instead to the people.
The Amendment was thus adopted in violation of Article V. Consequently, all Senates, beginning with the sixty-fourth Congress in March of , have been elected in violation of Article V of the Constitution. The privilege against self-incrimination is such a provision. As stated in the Fifth Amendment: "No person shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself".