Yesterday, the Wyoming Legislature voted to approve House Joint Resolution 2 (HJR2) which “claims sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States.”
The resolution originally passed the House on 02-17-10. Yesterday the Senate passed by a vote of 26-4, and sent it back to the House, which concurred by a vote of 56-4.
Wyoming is now the 10th state – joining Alabama, Utah, Alaska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Oklahoma, Idaho, Louisiana and Tennessee – where similar resolutions affirming sovereignty under the 10th Amendment to the Constitution have been approved by both legislative houses in the past year. Wyoming is the third state to pass a sovereignty resolution in 2010.
These non-binding resolutions do not carry the force of law. Instead, they are intended to be a statement of the legislature of the state. They play an important role, however.
First, they bring the issue to the public sphere. And they’re considered an important first step in the overall process of the 10th Amendment movement. For example, if you owned an apartment building and had a tenant not paying rent, you wouldn’t show up with an empty truck to kick them out without first serving notice. That’s how many view these Resolutions – as serving “notice and demand” to the Federal Government to “cease and desist any and all activities outside the scope of their constitutionally-delegated powers.”
What’s most important, is that they help create fertile ground for future actions. Follow-up, say supporters, is a must.
The Wyoming resolution is part of a growing grassroots movement in state legislatures across the country as a protest to the intrusion of the federal government into state government affairs, and is an essential first step towards efforts to push back, or nullify, unconstitutional federal laws and regulations.
CLICK HERE to view the Tenth Amendment Center’s 10th amendment resolution tracking page
CLICK HERE to view the Tenth Amendment Center’s model 10th Amendment Resolution, which you can send to your representatives when urging them to introduce one in your state.