Upcoming Pennsylvania Bill: Sell Pot to Citizens for Education Budget

Marijuana is fully legal in Colorado and Washington while 17 other states allow medical exemptions or decriminalization that effectively nullifies federal prohibition. Now State Senator Daylin Leach wants Pennsylvania to be the third state to regulate and tax marijuana like alcohol. What’s different from the other two is alcohol in Pennsylvania is exclusively sold in state-owned stores. Leach’s proposal has yet to be introduced as a bill, but it is already drawing debate and competition.

At the crux of the issue is the state education budget’s funding. While Governor Tom Corbett prefers privatizing the state liquor stores for around $1 billion, Senator Leach makes his “long-run” financial case on his website:

In addition to raising millions of dollars per year from tax revenue, Pennsylvania would save more than $325 million per year by legalizing marijuana. The most conservative estimates say the revenue generated by taxing the sales of marijuana would amount to at least $24 million per year.

Governor Corbett, a Republican, favors the status quo on marijuana prohibition, promising a veto. Senator Leach, a Democrat, favors the status quo on state-owned liquor stores. One wishes their bipartisan instincts would kick in for full privatization and legalization, but common sense only goes so far even at this promising point in the progressing push back against prohibition of marijuana. Tenth Amendment Center’s Communications Director, Mike Maharrey sees a clear path for Leach to take:

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ACTION ALERT: South Carolina NDAA Nullification Act of 2013

ACTION ITEMS

The South Carolina National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Nullification Act of 2013, S.92, needs your support for full passage. S.92 has been assigned to the Judiciary Committee, where the chairman, Sen. Larry A. Martin has referred it to subcommittee.

1. If you live in South Carolina, call Sen. Larry A. Martin and let him know you want S.92 passed out of subcommittee, then the full committee, as written. Remind him that his obligation lies with the people of South Carolina, and the Constitution, not an out of control Homeland Security Department, and that he has a duty to interpose and protect the people he serves. You can find his contact information HERE.

2. Also contact other committee members and urge them to vote for the bill passed as written. You can find committee member contact information HERE.

3. Contact your own state senator and state representative and ask them to support S.92. You will find Senate contact information HERE.

4. On Tue, Feb 5th, The Judiciary Committee will hold a public meeting on S.92. The Hearing will be held on Tuesday, 5 February at 1:30pm, in the Gressette Building, in Columbia. Members of the public may speak on the bill. Those who wish to do so should arrive about 1pm, in order to sign up in time to speak. The meeting is supposed to last at least one hour. Use the talking points below to make your case in this public hearing.

INFORMATION, BACKGROUND AND TALKING POINTS

When it comes to nullification of unconstitutional federal laws, the feet of some Republicans in the South Carolina legislature reportedly got cold over the last few weeks, and they need to be reminded that we’re watching the progress of the NDAA Nullification Act of 2013.

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New Hampshire Bill would ban Medicaid Expansion

HB 271, a bill to refuse Medicaid expansion, was introduced by Rep. William O’Brien and co-sponsored by Rep. Timothy Comerford.

This bill is short and sweet. HB271 states, “the commissioner shall not accept any federal moneys or in any way expand Medicaid pursuant to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2009.”

Boston.com issued an article from the Associated Press about a report from Health and Human Services (HHS). “It states, New Hampshire could save up to $114 million if it decides not to expand Medicaid under the new federal health care law, but it would lose $2.5 billion in federal aid toward health care for the state’s uninsured.”

That $2.5 billion in federal bribes to the state is taxpayer money. Tad DeHaven explains the meaning of these words in his article Federal Money to the State Isn’t ‘Free’. Currently New Hampshire has rejected making an exchange and refused federal funds to implement Obamacare with HB601 and SB148 when republicans were in control of the house. Representative O’Brien is worried about the excessive borrowing and spending from the federal government. He said, “when residents of New Hampshire hear about any federal spending, their take away should be that the federal government is moving us closer to a currency crisis and rampant inflation caused by excessive borrowing and spending.”

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Oklahoma House Bill would nullify NDAA “indefinite detention”

Representative Mike Ritze (R) of the Oklahoma House has introduced HB 1487, to nullify NDAA “indefinite detention” powers.  His legislation is the latest in an avalanche of similar Bills being introduced all across America.  The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2012 is being subjected to severe scrutiny by Americans as well as those who represent them at each State level.

Of particular interest is Section 1021 which in part reads:

“[a] person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces;”

[For the record - "any person" means you.]

HB 1487 includes the following: (paraphrasing)

Section 1 “No state agency or other unit or subdivision of state government, employee…… shall knowingly aid an agency of the armed forces of the United States in the detention of any Oklahoma citizen…..”

As with other similar Bills, and for reasons explained in a moment, the one word that could legally alter the intent of the legislation is  - “if”

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Houston Chronicle Dead Wrong on Nullification Bills

On January 27, the Houston Chronicle’s front page, banner headline article was called “If at first Texas can’t secede...” written by Patricia Kilday Hart.  The article starts off about how the online Texas secession movement has stalled, and then the rest of the article focuses on the nullification bills currently in the Texas Legislature.

This was bad form from the Houston Chronicle.  Many left biased news sources have tried to ridicule the various secession movements across the country.  Hart used that same ridicule for the secession movements and apply it to the nullification efforts through guilt by association.

Outside of the opening paragraph, there is no mention of succession in the rest of the article.   If I’m incorrect, then why use such a misdirecting headline when the significant majority of the article is about the nullification bills at the legislature and not about Texas secession?

The article continues by bringing in their  “expert”, South Texas Law Professor Charles Rhodes.  He referred to these nullification efforts as “political grandstanding.”  Rhodes would continue by saying, “It is eminently clear that, under the Supremacy Clause that was part of our Constitution when the states ratified it, that the federal government is supreme.”

Here is the text of the Supremacy Clause:

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Washington State Considers Firearms Freedom Act

Last week, Washington legislators added their voices to those of representatives in other states  reaffirming the constitutional protections against federal interference with the right to bear arms.

The Washington Firearms Freedom Act of 2013, HB 1371, introduced by representative David Taylor, rests on  the authority of the Second, Ninth and Tenth amendments to the United States Constitution, and Article I, section 24 of the Washington state Constitution. The guaranty of said rights and powers being  “A matter of contract between the state and people of Washington and the United States as of the time that the compact with the United States was agreed upon and adopted by Washington and the United States in 1889.”

The bill speaks clearly to the fact that private firearms, accessories, etc. that are either commercially or privately manufactured in the state of Washington and do not leave it’s boundaries, cannot be subject to regulation by Congress under the interstate commerce clause, since by definition interstate commerce applies to trade between states. It goes on to assert that “the authority of congress to regulate interstate commerce in basic materials does not include authority to regulate firearms, firearm accessories, and ammunition made in Washington from those materials. Firearms accessories that are imported into Washington from another state and that are subject to federal regulation as being in interstate commerce do not subject a firearm to federal regulation under interstate commerce because they are attached to or used in conjunction with a firearm in Washington.”

The bill has teeth, making it a felony for agents of the United States government to attempt to enforce rules or regulations upon the aforementioned, state bound arms. This is punishable by up to five years years, and a possible 10,000 fine – or both.

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