Fully Informed Jury Association

Are you fully informed about jury nullification?

Jury Nullification | 08 Mar 2008

Nullification: The People’s Veto Power

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When you serve as a juror, you can veto bad laws ~ or good laws if those laws are misapplied in the case before you.

You have the authority to render a verdict based on conscience. In many states, the court employees, including the judges, will tell you that you do not have this authority. You do.

The juror’s authority to veto bad laws is the final check and balance that We, the People, have to keep our government under our control.

The highest and best function of the jury is not, as many think, to dispense punishment to fellow citizens guilty of breaking the law, but rather to protect fellow citizens from bad laws imposed by power-hungry and greedy government, or government representatives, whether that government is a king, a dictator, an elected president, another politician, or even a local mayor.

Juries protect society from dangerous individuals and also protect individuals from dangerous government. Jurors have a duty and responsibility to render a just verdict. They must take into account the facts of the case, mitigating circumstances, the merits of the law, and the fairness of its application in each case.

The recognition of the authority and right of jurors to weigh the merits of the law and to render a verdict based on conscience, dates from before the writing of our Constitution, in cases such as those of William Penn and Peter Zenger. Should this right ever be suppressed, the people will retain their human right to resist, and when serving as a juror, retain the unalienable right to veto or nullify bad and oppressive laws, and more than ever, would be morally compelled to exercise this final veto.

Jurors, as the representatives of the people, hold no personal agenda during any trial ~ and most certainly not the government’s agenda. Let us not forget that the prosecutors, judges, arresting officers – and the forensic investigators in most cases – are all a part of and receive their paychecks from government, with personal power bases to build and personal careers to protect through the “productivity” of successful prosecutions resulting in convictions. Jurors have no such stake in the outcome, and are, in fact, the only truly objective individuals in the courtroom.

The primary role of our jurors is to protect private citizens from dangerous government laws and actions. Many existing laws erode and deny the rights of the people. Jurors protect against tyranny by refusing to convict harmless people. Our country’s founders planned and expected that we, the people, would exercise this power and authority to judge the law as well as the facts every time we serve as jurors. Jurors are the last peaceful defense of our civil liberties.

FIJA works to restore and protect the role of the juror, and the institution of Trial by Jury. Join with us to educate every potential juror in our nation about this final veto power held by We, the People: jury nullification.

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