Although nullification is often characterized as a right-wing phenomenon by reporters and pundits in the mainstream media, it actually appeals to people from all political walks of life – depending on the issue.Details
A bill recently introduced in Minnesota would permit the use of marijuana for medicinal use, effectively nullifying the federal prohibition on the plant.Details
Local resistance to unconstitutional violations of the Second Amendment continues to grow with the Mt. Holly Springs, Pa. council passing a resolution declaring that its citizens have the right to own firearms “free of unreasonable restraint and regulation.”
Council members voted unanimously May 14 to pass a resolution affirming the rights of its citizens to keep and bear arms.
The Second Amendment Preservation Resolution was based upon the Tenth Amendment Center’s model legislation and was proposed by resident Chris Rietmann. As reported in an article the Cumberland Sentinel, Reitmann explained why he proposed the bill saying, “I believe that the Framers of the Constitution chose their words carefully and, for the most part, it has worked very well for us for the last 200-plus years. I don’t believe you can legislate natural rights.”
The resolution is non-binding, and the city council chose to set aside a proposed Second Amendment Preservation Ordinance that would have nullified any federal gun control laws within city limits. The council sent the ordinance its legislative council for review.
Rietmann said the goal of the ordinance was to forbid borough officials, including the police, from assisting the federal government in carrying out what he called “acts that deny local residents their Second Amendment rights.”Details
We at the Tenth Amendment Center have promoted the idea that nullification brings people from both sides of the political equation together. And although we have seen mainstream voices from the establishment left and establishment right come together to denounce nullification, the idea continues to catch on amongst the freedom-starved American people. One recent example of nullification catching on comes from the left as author W.W. Houston wrote a recent article for the Economist on May 9 triumphing the idea of nullification and states rights.
Houston began his article with an interesting anecdote about the founding of the Republic of Texas. According to legend, freedom fighters in Texas held up a flag over their cannon that said ‘COME AND TAKE IT’ in defiance of their Mexican oppressors. Houston brought up a recent bill that had passed the Texas House that declared all federal gun control laws to be null and void, comparing it to their revolutionary ancestors. Usually, you would expect a mainstream media outlet at this point to go on a tyrade against this legislation calling it “crazy”, “racist”, “extreme” and every other derogatory term they could come up with. However, this time the Economist has thrown us a curve ball and is actually running the pro-States Rights point of view.
The article goes on to give a solid description of the arguments and counter-arguments for nullification before closing tremendously with an eloquent defense of states rights. “The discretion of states to decide what federal laws they will enforce strikes me as part of a healthy division and balance of government power. Requiring that states devote its citizens’ resources to the enforcement of laws with which the state legislature disagrees seems to me straightforwardly to deny the democratic sovereignty of the state’s people,” Houston said.Details
The State of Missouri is getting serious when it comes to protecting the gun rights of its citizens, and the legislature has proposed amending their State Constitution to show they that mean business.
Senate Joint Resolution 14 was passed by a landslide 29 to 2 vote on Apr. 4, and this proposed State Constitutional Amendment would provide ‘that a citizen has the right to keep and bear arms in defense of their family, in addition to the current rights in defense of home, person and property.’
The bill gets even better from there as it would not just re-affirm gun ownership rights for individuals but it would also remove ‘language stating that the right to keep and bear arms did not justify the wearing of concealed weapons’ and provide ‘that the rights guaranteed under this provision of the Constitution are unalienable. The State of Missouri is obligated to uphold these rights and shall under no circumstances decline to protect against their infringement.’
The language in this proposed amendment is clear that the State of Missouri must act decisively in protecting the God-given right to bear arms. It is unclear how this would exactly take shape during a full-scale federal ban and seizure of firearms, but this type of action is a decisive rebuke of the would-be gun grabbers and creates the legal requirement that the State defend against such acts. The message is being sent loud and clear to the federal usurpers that at least one state will be firmly on the side of the people should they overstep their bounds on this important issue.Details
Companion bills in the Minnesota State House and Senate aim to curtail potential abuses by law enforcement pertaining to predator drones.
HF 612 and SF 485 were both introduced last month and they hope to specify guidelines to protect the privacy rights of Minnesotans. HF 612 has been referred to the Public Safety Finance and Policy Committee while SF 485 has been referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The bills state that “law enforcement agency may not use a drone to gather evidence or other information on individuals.” This is meant to safeguard individual citizens from excessive spying by law enforcement. However, some exceptions are given for law enforcement personnel to use drones.
Such exceptions include if it is necessary “to counter a high risk of a terrorist attack by a specific individual or organization if the secretary of the United States Department of Homeland Security determines that credible intelligence indicates that there is this risk” or “if the law enforcement agency first obtains a search warrant authorizing its use” or “if the law enforcement agency possesses reasonable suspicion that, under particular circumstances, swift action is needed to prevent imminent danger to life or serious damage to property, or to forestall the imminent escape of a suspect or the
destruction of evidence.”
Although these exceptions may seem like they could be prone to abuse (ie. DHS fabricating evidence to show that a political dissident is involved in terrorism), Subsection 4 of the bill states that “A person aggrieved by a law enforcement agency’s violation of this section may bring a civil action against the agency.” This will hopefully give the public some recourse in fighting back against unlawful infringements on their rights if the bills are passed. The bills also make evidence collected in violation of these new rules inadmissible in the court of law.Details
HB 3785, authored by Rep. Charles Perry (HD 83), has been referred to the Federalism & Fiscal Responsibility Committee. This bill nullifies Obamacare in Texas and interposes against taxes created or increased by it. It’s not captioned as such, but those of us who worked on this bill call it the “Texas Taxpayer Protection Act”.
Part of the bill states:
The assumption of power that the federal government has made by enacting the “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act” (PPACA) interferes with the right of the people of the State of Texas to regulate health care as they see fit.
Also, the bill states the United States Supreme Court decision upholding the PPACA as a tax is invalid. One of the reasons stated was:Details
Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania is the latest local community to take a stand against the Police State. They recently passed a 2nd Amendment Preservation Resolution that stands against the Feds trampling upon the Constitution in their neck of the woods.
The resolution affirms the natural rights of people saying that “any federal act, bill, law, rule or executive order that in any way infringes on our Second Amendment rights by attempting to reduce the private ownership of any firearm, magazine or ammunition shall be unenforceable in Susquehanna County.”
As Judge Andrew Napolitano has said recently, widespread noncompliance can make a federal law “nearly impossible to enforce” (video here)
The passing of this resolution also marks a rare instance where bipartisanship within government works to the benefit of the American people. The resolution was introduced by Republican Commissioner Michael Giangrieco and supported by Democratic Commissioner MaryAnn Warren, as well as the whole committee. It was passed unanimously.Details
Two bills have been introduced in the Tennessee legislature to stop the indefinite detention provisions of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act from being complied with by local and state law enforcement officials.
House Bill 1059 and Senate Bill 1290 were introduced on Feb. 11 and Feb. 14, respectively. They were referred to the State Government Committee and Senate Judiciary Committee where they currently await further action. HB 1059 was sponsored by Rep. Rogers (R-Goodlettsville) with seven more House members adding their support. SB 1290 was sponsored by Sen. Summerville (R-Dickson).
HB 1059 says, “Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, no agency of this state, political subdivision acting in his or her official capacity, member of the Tennessee National Guard on official state duty or member of the Tennessee state guard and civil air patrol shall aid an agency of the armed forces in any investigation, prosecution or detention of any United States citizen pursuant to section 1021 of the national defense authorization act of fiscal year 2012.” The Senate Bill contains the same text.
Although these bills do not interpose any criminal penalties for feds who try to kidnap Americans without proper legal protections, they do get the incredibly important idea of non-compliance to federal laws out there to Tennesseans. These bills are a firm stand against the dangerous idea promulgated all too often that the states wield nothing more than vestigial power and are meant to acquiesce to whatever their federal masters dictate to them, no matter how obviously unjust it is.
Sadly, there are still many voices of the soon-to-be obsolete political establishment spewing the same old tired nonsense in opposition. A great example of this is Tennessee State House Democratic Caucus Chairman Mike Turner. He said to the Knoxville News Sentinel that “[Republicans and Democrats] need to show some courage to put these extremists in line. … There are extremists in both political parties. A lot of their extremists got elected to the Legislature. Our extremists didn’t get elected to the Legislature.”Details
Collier County, Florida has taken measures to protect the safety and security of its citiz
ens, passing a resolution that will nullify any federal gun control measures in that county.
The resolution was passed on Feb. 26 with a unanimous vote and declares ‘that no county resources be used in the implementation of any Federal law, executive order or executive directive that infringe on the right to keep and bear arms.”
The resolution also calls for the state government to follow their lead and be vigilant in defending the liberties of Floridians saying, “The Collier County Board of Commissioners calls upon the Governor and the Florida Legislature to immediately pass an act to nullify the implementation within the State of Florida of any Federal law, executive order or regulations restricting the right to keep and bear arms.”Details