From Henrico Senator, Donald McEachin, and courtesy of the Richmonder blog, comes the latest flaccid attempt to cast the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution as alternately “unconstitutional”, “illegal” and “neo-confederate”.
It seems McEachin is perturbed by Gov. McDonnell’s recent decision not to publicly confirm or deny the fact that sovereign states have the power to judge for themselves the constitutionality of federal laws.
What’s not clear is why McEachin chose to pick on Gov. McDonnell when his real beef lies with Thomas Jefferson. After all, it was the author of the Declaration of Independence who pointed out in 1798 that the several states had
constituted a general government for special purposes — delegated to that government certain definite powers, reserving, each State to itself, the residuary mass of right to their own self-government; and that whensoever the general government assumes undelegated powers, its acts are unauthoritative, void, and of no force: …that the government created by this compact was not made the exclusive or final judge of the extent of the powers delegated to itself; since that would have made its discretion, and not the Constitution, the measure of its powers; but that…each party has an equal right to judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the mode and measure of redress.
Rather than contest the clear and irrefutable logic of a legendary Virginia statesman like Jefferson, McEachin instead hides behind the skirts (I mean robes) of Supreme Court precedent. Precedent which has conveniently found that, not only is the Court (itself a branch of the federal government) the final judge of constitutionality, but the federal government’s power actually has no limits at all.
That sure sounds an awful lot like the general government’s “discretion, and not the Constitution,” has become “the measure of its powers.”
Forget all the examples of nullification being used peacefully and successfully by states to increase individual freedom, from medical marijuana to resistance of the Fugitive Slave Acts. According to McEachin, the 10th Amendment is nothing but ”unconstitutional and illegal drivel.”
Is it any wonder that these statists are so fond of piously quoting case law in a pathetic effort to avoid having to defend such outrageous claims with logic or reason?
P.S. Click to hear Tom Woods on Virginia’s own Freedom & Prosperity Radio discussing his powerful new book Nullification: How to Resist Federal Tyranny in the 21st Century.
Crossposted from the Tertium Quids blog.