cross-posted from the Maine Tenth Amendment Center
Maine has a strong tradition of nullification in recent years. Despite the Controlled Substances Act being on the books, the people of Maine nullified this unconstitutional law by allowing for the use of medical marijuana in 1999. Medical marijuana was again voted on a couple of years ago and passed, in clear violation of the Federal legislation. Although it has become a popular movement over the last decade, in the beginning, it started small with California leading the push.
Just several years later, Maine would again lead the nation against unjust Federal legislation, when Congress passed the REAL ID Act of 2005. The legislation, which created a national identification card, was opposed by many groups on both sides of the fence as unconstitutional and an invasion of privacy. Maine passed a Resolution opposing the law, which led to over half of the States in the Union passing legislation directly resisting the bill or defunding compliance measures, which were left to the States. In the most recent session of the legislature, State Representative Ben Chipman (U-Portland), again led Maine in standing up for the rights of the Maine people, with LD 1068 (See “Bill Challenging REAL ID Gains Bipartisan Support“).
State Representative Richard Cebra (R-Naples), who is now running for the State Senate, has also been a strong supporter of the Tenth Amendment, introducing Tenth Amendment resolutions and regularly supporting measures in defense of limited government. State Representative Aaron Libby (R-Waterboro) introduced the Defend The Guard Act, which would return control of the National Guard to the Governor, as required by the U.S. Constitution. He also introduced legislation to nullify the Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act, known as “Obamacare” by opponents, and infamous for it’s insurance mandate imposed upon American citizens. State Representative Mel Newendyke (R-Litchfield) introduced the Intrastate Commerce Act, which would nullify all unconstitutional Federal laws affecting in-state commerce. Various measures, especially the opposition to REAL ID, gained bipartisan support. The Constitution is not a political issue, nor is it a divisive one. We are all united behind the idea of a prosperous and free State for all Mainers to live in.
This is only the beginning however and the situation in America is growing worse. Despite Federal Prohibition being in violation of the Constitution, the Federal Goverment is cracking down on legitimate medical marijuana usage in California, instead of cracking down on the violence on the border resulting from an ongoing drug war. A war on raw milk is being waged, with Amish communities even becoming the target of Federal raids. The Federal Government possesses the ability to wiretap your phones, monitor your e-mails, and GPS track you. Where does the madness end?
This is not the America our Founders gave us. But where do we go when Congress, the President, and the Judiciary refuse to stand up for what is right? Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, answered “Whensoever the general government assumes undelegated powers….a nullification of the act is the rightful remedy.”
We will expand that in 2012.
With yet another crackdown being threatened on California and a history already of oppressing sick victims, uncertainty lingers here in Maine. We, too, have medical marijuana users with patients and caregivers acting in full compliance of State law. But what if the Federal Government comes knocking on our doors? Can we rely on Governor Paul LePage, the Tea Party favorite who claims to support the Constitution, to stand up to them? Can we rely on the State Legislature to use their power to order resistance on behalf of the people? Can we rely on the local sheriffs to stand up for their citizens they’re supposed to protect?
Twice, the people have Maine have spoken. How many more times do they have to speak before the message is clear?
One focus of the Maine Tenth Amendment Center going into 2012 will be pushing to further support the medical marijuana community. The sick patients and the caregivers who wish to take care of them were granted approval to operate under Maine law, and they trust that their elected representatives will do the right thing. Federal Prohibition is being enforced in direct violation of the Constitution, specifically, the Tenth Amendment. We cannot allow the Federal Government to push around sick people or the people who care for them, any longer.
A second focus will be on furthering the interests of local commerce. In the last year, four Maine towns have passed Food Sovereignty Ordinances, nullifying unconstitutional laws affecting local commerce. The Maine Legislature also passed a Food Sovereignty Resolution, which, while non-binding, reaffirmed the natural right of the people over the unlawful overreach of the Federal Government. While we’ve taken major steps forward, there is still much to be done. The Intrastate Commerce Act, which would’ve nullified all unconstitutional laws affecting in-state commerce, was defeated in the legislature. We will not rest however, as Maine communities should be able to operate locally without the chains of unjust legislation weighing down their operations.
A third focus, a major project, will be bringing the Nullify Now tour to Maine. Nullify Now has been very successful for the Tenth Amendment Center, with stops all across the country. Most recently, the tour went to Jacksonville and will be going to Philadelphia after the start of the new year. We hope to bring it to Maine. For more information on how to help, please visit the official page for Nullify Now Maine here.
In the near future, we will be unveiling detailed information on all of our projects heading into 2012. There will be more coming, as we plan on expanding the Maine Tenth Amendment Center and stepping up operations. Please keep up to date by following our website. You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter. I also invite anyone with questions or comments, to contact me at email@example.com.
Thank you for your continued support.
Chris is the state chapter coordinator for the Maine Tenth Amendment Center.
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