ACTION ALERT: Help Maryland Nullify the TSA

Un-consented contact means a contact that a person does not want, or contact that was informed as wanted to avoid. This is exactly what Maryland’s House Bill 1111 is proposing to make a crime. The legislation could substantially curb the federally mandated Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) blatant violations of American’s civil rights. We urge you to contact the individual leaders of the House Judiciary Committee and express your support for this bill, and the protection of our Constitutional rights.

The Maryland State Legislature proposes in the bill titled “Public Safety – Restrictions on Searches for Security Purposes – Penalties”, to define illegal detention,  search, and seizure by a public servant as a crime against the victim of the encroachment, and authorizes the State Attorney General to make use of existing laws and the Tenth Amendment as a defense against any federally levied claims against its constitutionality:

Synopsis:

Prohibiting a specified public servant, while acting under color of the public servant’s office or employment, from intentionally subjecting another person to mistreatment or to arrest, detention, search, seizure, dispossession, assessment, or lien that the public servant knows is unlawful, intentionally denying or impeding another person in the exercise or enjoyment of a right, privilege, power, or immunity, knowing that the conduct of the public servant is unlawful, or intentionally subjecting another person to sexual harassment; etc.

ACTION ITEMS

Details

The Supreme Court and Obamacare

by Ron Paul

Last week the Supreme Court heard arguments concerning the constitutionality of the Obamacare law, focusing on the mandate requiring every American to buy health insurance or pay fines enforced by the IRS. Hopefully the Court will strike down this abomination, but we must recognize that the federal judiciary has an abysmal record when it comes to protecting liberty. It’s doubtful the entire law will be struck down. Regardless, the political left will continue its drive toward a single-payer, government run health care system.

The insurance mandate clearly exceeds the federal government’s powers under the interstate commerce clause found in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution. This is patently obvious: the power to “regulate” commerce cannot include the power to compel commerce! Those who claim otherwise simply ignore the plain meaning of the Constitution because they don’t want to limit federal power in any way.

The commerce clause was intended simply to give Congress the power to regulate foreign trade, and also to prevent states from imposing tariffs on interstate goods. In Federalist Paper No. 22, Alexander Hamilton makes it clear the simple intent behind the clause was to prevent states from placing tolls or tariffs on goods as they passed through each state– a practice that had proven particularly destructive across the many principalities of the German empire.

Details

Pennsylvania Legislature Overwhelmingly Passes Real ID Nullification. Governor’s Signature Next?

Last October, the Pennsylvania Senate voted unanimously to refuse to comply with the Bush era Federal Real ID law by passing SB354. Today, the House concurred, passing it by a vote of 189-5. Senator Mike Folmer (R, district 48) announced passage on his Facebook page,

“I am especially pleased my Senate Bill 354 to exempt Pennsylvania from the mandates of the federal REAL ID law was passed by the full House 189 – 5. If signed by the Governor, Pennsylvania would be the largest state to opt out.”

This legislation states,

Neither the Governor nor the Department of Transportation or any other Commonwealth agency shall participate in the REAL ID Act of 2005 or regulations promulgated thereunder.

and if Governor Corbett signs it, it will take affect in 60 days.

Details

A New age of Jefferson: How will the world respond to American decentralization?

The optimists on Charlie Rose last Wednesday night said the Supreme Court vote would likely preserve Obamacare. Turning back the way of life since FDR seems unrealistic. The war of ideas between centralization and decentralization is supposed to have been settled at Cemetery Ridge. But this is not over. Senator Mike Lee of Utah said 5-4 turning back the Obama initiative.

Pundits say it is as important as Brown v. Board of Education. It is a good comparison in that, yes, what the Court rules will change America. I felt the best perspective was in an editorial, “Bracing for the Court” in the New York Sun. They compare the challenge today to an appeal to the Supreme Court in 1935 by a family of kosher butchers, challenged the constitutionality of the National Industrial Recovery Act, which was the centerpiece of the New Deal. They appealed to the Supreme Court on much the same grounds as the states are now making their appeal on health care.

But consider the scope of the challenge to centralization then and that of today. This is not a challenge from a family of kosher butchers in Brooklyn. The challenge to centralization today comes from 26 states. It goes beyond Brown v Board of Education and past Schechter Poultry v. U.S. It goes to our very beginnings.

Details

Postal Problems: the Role of Government Micromanagement

Postal expert Michael Schuyler has released a follow-up to his January paper that compared the recent financial performance of the U.S. Postal Service to foreign postal service providers. Not surprisingly, the USPS has fared relatively poorly in comparison to its foreign counterparts. In his new paper, Schuyler looks at the role government micromanagement plays and finds that “Foreign posts have much more flexibility than USPS to adjust operations to keep costs in line with revenue.”

The following are some key points:

Details

Will Pennsylvania Nullify Health Mandates?

After having been reviewed multiple times since January 31st 2011, the Pennsylvania Senate passed Senate Bill 10 (SB10) by a vote of  29-19.  The bill is a joint resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution of Pennsylvania which would prohibit any government from requiring the Pennsylvanians to buy health insurance. It states, in part –

“no law shall be enacted requiring a person to obtain or maintain health insurance coverage”

Pennsylvania Senate District 25’s Joseph B. Scarnati is the prime sponsor of the bill which still requires a vote by the General Assembly’s House of Representatives. Once fully passed by both houses, it can be placed on the ballot for a statewide referendum.

Already, ten states have passed similar bills, commonly referred to as the Health Care Freedom Act. With the current SCOTUS review of Obamacare, this action along with many others currently in process in other states, sends a clear message that Americans are not content with the Federal Government encroaching on their liberties.

The amendment, if approved by the people of Pennsylvania, would also prevent the federal government from imposing fines or penalties against people who don’t buy insurance — up to 2.5 percent of household income.

Details

How Not to Make the Case for Terminating Federal Programs

Republican presidential front-runner Mitt Romney recently gave the following response to a reporter’s question on what programs he would cut:

Of course you get rid of Obamacare, that’s the easy one, but there are others: Planned Parenthood, we’re gonna get rid of that. The subsidy for Amtrak, I would eliminate that. The National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, both excellent programs, but we can’t afford to borrow money to pay for these things.

It’s good that Romney can actually name federal programs that he would terminate (even if they’re relatively small programs). But how on earth does he expect to garner support from Congress to terminate the NEA and NEH after having called them “excellent programs”? Sorry, but the “federal government is broke” argument won’t get the job done. In fact, it’s just a cop out that Republican politicians often use to avoid having to provide a coherent, principled justification for spending cuts.

Last year, I criticized the Boehner Republicans in the House for making a similarly weak case for spending cuts:

Details

NH Medical Marijuana Bill Faces Veto

The New Hampshire Senate passed legislation 13-to-11 Wednesday, March 28, 2012 to allow a patient with a “debilitating medical condition” or that patient’s designated caretaker to cultivate and possess up to six ounces of marijuana, four mature plants and 12 seedlings at a registered “cultivation location.” It would allow the patient or caregiver to possess two ounces elsewhere. 

Despite vocal support from several traditional opponents including Senate Republican Leader Jeb Bradley, it failed to gather the two-thirds majority needed for a veto override.

Governor John Lynch has opposed several medical marijuana bills in recent years. He vetoed a dispensary approach in 2009, citing concerns over proliferation and cultivation beyond the dispensaries, and another medical marijuana bill died last year in the Senate after he had promised a veto. 

Following the Senate vote, Lynch spokesman Colin Manning said the bill was even less restrictive than the dispensary approach, and the governor plans to veto it (Boston Globe).

With seven Republicans supporting the bill, allowing the legislation to cross party lines, and the Senate Health and Human Services Committee voting 5-0 to approve the bill, Senator Jim Forsythe (R) is leading the charge to build a veto proof majority for the legislation.

If they are successful, the New Hampshire program would resemble those in Maine and Vermont and would end in three years if lawmakers do not renew it, providing an outlet for review and reform.

Details