14 June 1995

Senate Resolution 133--Relative to the
United Nations Convnetion on the Rights of the Child

[Page: S8400] Mr. HELMS (for himself, Mr. Lott, Mr. Abraham, Mr. Ashcroft, Mr. Coats, Mr. Craig, Mr. DeWine, Mr. Faircloth, Mr. Frist, Mr. Gramm, Mr. Grams, Mr. Hatch, Mr. Kempthorne, Mr. McConnell, Mr. Murkowski, Mr. Nickles, Mr. Santorum, Mr. Smith, and Mr. Thurmond) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations:

S. Res. 133

Whereas the Senate affirms the commitment of the United States to work with other nations to enhance the protection of children, the advancement of education, the eradication of disease, and the protection of human rights ;

Whereas the Constitution and laws of the United States are the best guarantees against mistreatment of children in our country;

Whereas the laws and traditions of the United States affirm the right of parents to raise their children and to transmit to them their values and religious beliefs;

Whereas the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child , if ratified, would become the supreme law of the land, taking precedence over State and Federal laws regarding family life;

Whereas that Convention establishes a `universal standard' which must be met by all parties to the Convention , thereby inhibiting the rights of the States and the Federal Government to enact child protection and support laws inconsistent with that standard; and

Whereas the Convention 's intrusion into national sovereignty was manifested by the Convention 's 1995 committee report faulting the United Kingdom for permitting parents to make decisions for their children without consulting those children: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That it is the sense of the Senate that--

(1) the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child is incompatible with the God-given right and responsibility of parents to raise their children;

(2) the Convention has the potential to severely restrict States and the Federal Government in their efforts to protect children and to enhance family life;

(3) the United States Constitution is the ultimate guarantor of rights and privileges to every American, including children; and

(4) the President should not sign and transmit to the Senate that fundamentally flawed Convention .

Mr. HELMS. Mr. President, every so often around this place we are asked to confront an idea whose time should never come, and the Senate resolution that I shall shortly send to the desk for appropriate reference is one of those very, very bad ideas.

Eighteen other Senators feel the same way about the proposed treaty called `The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child .'

In addition to the Senator from North Carolina, other cosponsors are Senators Lott, Abraham, Ashcroft, Coats, Craig, DeWine, Faircloth, Frist, Gramm, Grams, Hatch, Kempthorne, McConnell, Murkowski, Nickles, Santorum, Smith and Thurmond. I am honored to stand with such a distinguished group of Senators who feel, as I do, that President Clinton--indeed no President--should sign and transmit such a document to the U.S. Senate. If the President does attempt to push this unwise proposal through the Senate, I want him to know, and I want the Senate to know, that I intend to do everything possible to make sure that he is not successful.

Mr. President, more than 5,000 letters from across this country have poured into my office in opposition to the so-called `Convention on the Rights of the Child .' I have received only one letter in support of this proposed treaty. The consensus is so evident in this mass of letters.

N.B. Original co-sponsors of SRes133 (14 June 1995):
Abraham (R-MI)
Ashcroft (R-MO)
Coats (R-IN)
Craig (R-ID)
DeWine (R-OH)
Faircloth (R-NC)
Frist (R-TN)
Gramm, P. (R-TX)
Grams, R. (R-MN)
Hatch (R-UT)
Kempthorne (R-ID)
Lott (R-MS)
McConnell (R-KY)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Nickles (R-OK)
Santorum (R-PA)
Smith, R.C. (R-NH)
Thurmond, S. (R-SC)

Cosponsors added (11 July 1995):

Cochran (R-MS)
Pressler (R-SD)
Shelby (R-AL)
Thomas, C. (R-WY)

Return to PANGAEA HomePage