Monday, July 19, 2010

Oklahoma's November Ballot Will Include Constituitonal Amendment To Bar Courts' Use of Sharia Law

Yesterday's Tulsa World reports that Oklahoma's Nov. 2 ballot will include State Question 755 which would amend the state constitution to prohibit state courts from considering or using international law or Sharia law. (Ballot language.) Titled by the legislature the "Save Our State Amendment" (full text of HJR 1056), the proposed amendment reads:
The courts provided for in subsection A of this section, when exercising their judicial authority, shall uphold and adhere to the law as provided in the United States Constitution, the Oklahoma Constitution, the United States Code, federal regulations promulgated pursuant thereto, established common law, the Oklahoma Statutes and rules promulgated pursuant thereto, and if necessary the law of another state of the United States provided the law of the other state does not include Sharia law, in making judicial decisions. The courts shall not look to the legal precepts of other nations or cultures. Specifically, the courts shall not consider international law or Sharia law. The provisions of this subsection shall apply to all cases before the respective courts, including, but not limited to, cases of first impression.
State Rep. Rex Duncan who authored the proposal called it a pre-emptive strike since he is not aware of any Oklahoma case based on international or Sharia law. Razi Hashmi, executive director of the Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said the proposal is motivated by anti-Muslim bigotry.