Texas’ Border Stunt Is Based on the Same Legal Theory Confederate States Used to Secede (Rotimi Adeoye, Updated Jan. 28, 2024, Daily Beast)
Furthermore, Abbott’s letter espouses the fringe theory of constitutional law known as “compact theory,” popularized by Confederate states during the Civil War era and supported by Confederate President Jefferson Davis.
This theory posits that the United States was formed through a compact agreed upon by the states, with the federal government being a creation of the states. However, this view conflicts with the widely accepted social contract theory, which asserts that the federal government derives its authority from the consent of the people, not the states. The Supreme Court has consistently rejected compact theory, deeming it illegitimate and incompatible with constitutional law.
At the crux of what’s happening at the southern border lies the question: Does the federal government have the authority to regulate access to Texas’ borders? The answer is unequivocally, yes.
Texas’ embrace of compact theory and its assertion that state government can supersede federal authority directly contradict the landmark Supreme Court case of McCulloch v. Maryland (1819).