A Pro-Nullification President?

Gary Johnson, who spoke at Nullify Now! tour stops in both Orlando and Phoenix, has just announced his candidacy for president. And, in an interview with the radical anti-nullification revisionists at ThinkProgress, Johnson made clear his support for the movement around the country.

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KEYES: I know a lot of states have been taking up these nullification bills.

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We Must Choose Another Path

Nullification is perhaps the best kept secret of our country’s history. A textbook in recent use at the University of Louisiana-Monroe, American Passages, devoted a meagre five out of its 1,003 total pages to the subject. This despite the past use of nullification in states across the Union on a variety of objects, such as a national bank, federal violations of the freedom of speech and of the press, illegitimate uses of the federal taxing power, and unconstitutional Supreme Court rulings.

While the details of any act of state nullification, past or present, would be beneficial for timid elected officials or uninformed citizens to read and contemplate, one has especial significance for us in Louisiana because of the oil drilling ban the federal government has put in place in the Gulf of Mexico: the federal government’s embargo law of 1813 and the response of the State of Massachusetts.

The embargo law of 1813 was intended to punish Great Britain for harassing American vessels at sea by barring all American trade with Great Britain. But as J. J. Kilpatrick noted in his book The Sovereign States, ‘Trade with Britain was the lifeblood of New England.’ Because of the federal embargo, ‘That blood was being drained away.’

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State Nullification of the Federal Budget

The word nullify has been used for every act of congress that is objectionable on the grounds that it is unconstitutional but yet we dare not to use this word for the federal budget. Why? Budgets are nothing more than laws–laws that direct how federal money is to be spent and this law can be nullified much more easily than any other act of congress.

The reason for this is that every dollar spent is spent in a sovereign state to purchase property for the use of the federal agencies. When that property is used for a unconstitutional purpose or if that expenditure creates a unbalanced budged then the state can use its power of eminent domain to confiscate it which effectively nullifies that expenditure (and the law that property is to help enforce) in that state’s jurisdiction.

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