A Surprisingly Well Done Nullification Op-Ed in Florida

When one of the remaining deans of Florida newspaper reporters writes an opinion piece about the Tenth Amendment that isn’t historically false, insulting and agenda driven, we take notice.

In his Tallahassee.com op-ed It’s time to start talking about the 10th Amendment, the highly acclaimed retired Tallahassee Democrat reporter Bill Cotterell writes, “Recently, though — and not just since Obama’s election — we’ve seen increased instances of states wanting to reject federal mandates. Surprisingly, and inconsistently, the Obama administration has gone along with some of them.

“The legal basis for this resistance is the 10th Amendment, which states, ‘The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people…’ Nobody really knows what that means. James Madison, who proposed it, thought the idea was so obvious that Ye Olde Bill O’ Rights didn’t need to spell it out, but some state legislatures were reluctant to ratify without a guarantee of their own powers.”

Of course, at the Tenth Amendment Center we know exactly what that means. Still,this is an excellent and open minded opinion, and a welcome change from the diatribe and mythology that has emanated from the likes of the Heritage Foundation, CATO and just today, Reason.com.

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Non-Compliance with Obamacare In Florida Riles Obama Administration

Florida continues to keep an arm’s length distance from the Patient Care and Affordability Act, and the state’s actions are creating impediments to the implementation of Obamacare.

First,the legislature opted not to create state run health exchanges during the 2012 session. Now Obamacare “Navigators” are barred from enrolling people into PACA on Florida Department of Health property.

An exception has been granted for federally qualified health centers operating within local health departments. There are 41 such clinics in Florida. These entities have received approximately $8 million in federal grants to assist uninsured Floridians with enrolling in the increasingly unpopular and unconstitutional health care scheme.

County Health Department staff may accept informational material from Navigators to hand out to health department patients who request it. The access prohibition order was made by the department’s Deputy Secretary for State Wide Services C. Meade Grigg. Ashley Carr, a spokesperson for the Department of Health issued this statement regarding the order

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Unconstitutional Federal Prohibition is Ending

The END is near for federal marijuana “laws” (which have no constitutional authority),whether or not they choose to admit it.  In fact, bringing in the banksters is admitting it. These guys will surely want to expand business. “The Justice Department and federal banking regulators will help clear the way for financial institutions to transact business…

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The Florida NAACP Embraces State-Based Solutions

“No we don’t trust the legislators, No we don’t trust our government in Florida or DC either, to do the right thing,” said Adora Nweze, president of the Florida State Conference of NAACP.  The group started a mobilization process in response to the Supreme Court ruling that found section 4 of the Voting Rights Act to be unconstitutional.  The plan includes educating voters and contacting law makers who will now control what ever new voting rules are created.–WWSB My Suncoast news story

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When I heard this story  on the radio my first thought was , “A light went on at the NAACP!”

This statement by Florida NAACP president Adora Nweze could have been made by any Tenther or liberty person discussing the proper role of government and the lost federalism of the ratifiers.

Ms. Nweze went on.

” the Supreme Court ruling is “a step back,..   We will require we roll up our sleeves and get busy making sure that our governor, our state legislators and our congresspersons understand the role each of them has in ensuring that this decision does not throw us back to the 60s.”

No rational person feels anything but repugnance  towards Jim Crow laws. I also doubt that a return to those days has any chance of occurring. Tenthers and liberty people would be among the first to join against such laws and move against the state if even the shadow of Jim Crow hinted of a comeback, state sanctioned or otherwise.

This SCOTUS decision is not in fact a step back, but a step forward in what must be a long term reclamation of federalism–keeping the federal government and its courts restrained to their  enumerated powers; leaving to the states the vast residuary mass of  infinite powers reserved to them.

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New Hampshire Legislature Nullifies Federal “Laws” on Marijuana

CONCORD, N.H.  – New Hampshire moved a step forward toward legalizing marijuana for medical use, joining the swelling ranks of states nullifying the unconstitutional federal ban on weed.  The Legislature voted 284-66 Wednesday in favor of HB 573 and the bill now goes to the Governor’s desk for a signature.

The bill allows patients diagnosed with cancer, Crohn’s disease and approximately twenty initially approved conditions to possess up to 2 ounces of marijuana obtained from one of four dispensaries authorized by the state.

‘‘All of us recognize it has been proven to provide relief from pain and suffering,’’ Sen. Martha Fuller Clark (D-Portsmouth) said.

Even so, the feds define alleviating suffering as a criminal activity. Congress and the president claim the constitutional authority to ban marijuana. The Supreme Court concurs. But the opinions of black-robed judicial oracles don’t magically transform the meaning of the Constitution. It delegates no power to regulate plants grown and used within the borders of a state. And the so-called war on drugs rests on the same legal authority as all of the other modern-day undeclared wars.

None.

Doubt this? Then ask yourself why it took a constitutional amendment to legalize federal alcohol prohibition?

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Maryland to become 19th state to legalize medical marijuana

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (May 2, 2013) – Maryland became the 19th State to legalize marijuana for medical use  Thursday when Governor Martin O’Malley signed  the “Medical Marijuana – Academic Medical Centers – Natalie M. LaPrade Medical Marijuana Commission” act into law.

Congress and the president claim the constitutional authority to prohibit weed. The Supreme Court concurs. But sharing an opinion on something doesn’t necessarily make it a fact. You can claim you are a unicorn, but you’re not. Clearly, the Constitution delegates no power of marijuana regulation to the feds. And the so-called war on drugs rests on the same legal authority as all of the other modern-day undeclared wars.

None.

So, more and more states continue to do exactly what they should do when the federal government tries exercise power it does not legitimately possess.

Ignore it.

With Maryland’s new law, 19 states have done just that, legalizing medical marijuana. That wave continues to build, with even more state legislatures considering medicinal marijuana legislation in the 2013 session, and more likely to follow suit.

Better known by its shorter numerical designation,  HB 1101, and introduced by Delgate Dan Morhaim, the new law allows academic medical research centers to create and implement programs to dispense marijuana to sick patients.

Under HB 1101  marijuana will only be provided through academic medical centers, more commonly known as teaching hospitals. Critics of the bill argue with hospitals having a choice to dispense or not dispense, some will opt to not participate. The new law also allows the governor to suspend the program if state employees fall under jeopardy of prosecution by the federal government.

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California Anti-Drone Bill Advances To Assembly Floor

California’s state legislature, like many around the nation, is grappling with the issue of privacy in the face of the growing demand by law enforcement to use drones to combat criminal activity.

AB 1327  introduced by Jeff Gorell (R-Camarillo) would require law enforcement agencies to obtain a warrant before using an unmanned aerial system to collect evidence relating to criminal activity.

The bill was approved by the state Assembly’s Public Safety Committee on Tuesday.

Among other safeguards, the bill  would require law enforcement agencies to obtain a warrant based on probable cause before using a drone to collect evidence. Exceptions would include emergencies such as a hostage crisis, fire, hot pursuit of a suspected criminal or search-and-rescue operation over land or water. It would allow cities and counties to enact more restrictive policies if they choose to do so.

Gorell described the bill as “pretty restrictive.”

AB1327 would also require that public agencies permanently destroy all data and images collected by an unmanned aerial device within 10 days unless required as evidence of a crime or as part of a court order. A person who is subject to surveillance without consent may seek and obtain an injunction prohibiting the use of images, footage, or data related to the person that was obtained through the surveillance, and would provide for the awarding of liquidated damages of five thousand dollars ($5,000) for each day of surveillance and any actual damages in excess of that amount.

Unmanned systems are most commonly known for their use by the military and this  is not lost on Gorell. He served as a naval targeting officer in Afghanistan.

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Florida Senate Passes Anti-Drone Bill, 39-0

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (April 10, 2013) – A bill restricting the use of drones in the Sunshine State unanimously passed the Florida Senate Wednesday morning.

SB92 would prohibit any law enforcement agency from using unmanned drones to gather evidence or other information without a warrant.

“A law enforcement agency may not use a drone to gather evidence or other information.”

The bill opens the door for any person whose privacy is violated by a drone to take civil action and would also make any evidence gathered in violation of the act inadmissible in court.

The act makes its only exception allowing for the use of drones “to counter a high risk of a terrorist attack by a specific individual or organization if the United States Secretary of Homeland Security determines that credible intelligence indicates that there is such a risk.”

The Freedom from Unwarranted Surveillance Act passed 39-0 with one Senator not voting.  (See the roll call HERE)

Sen. Joe Negron sponsored the bill.

“I believe it achieves a delicate balance between security and freedom,” he said before the full Senate vote.

SB92 sailed through five committee hearings with unanimous approval in each.

“I believe that privacy should be protected and I look forward to signing Sen. Negron’s drone bill. This law will ensure that the rights of Florida families are protected from the unwarranted use of drones and other unmanned aircraft,” Florida Governor Rick Scott said.

The House companion bill HB119 must now be passed before “the drone bill” can become law.

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