utah-flagToday, on its 3rd reading, the Utah Senate passed SB11, the Firearms Freedom Act, by a vote of 19-10. The bill states:

A personal firearm, a firearm action or receiver, a firearm accessory, or ammunition that is manufactured commercially or privately in the state to be used or sold within the state is not subject to federal law or federal regulation, including registration, under the authority of congress to regulate interstate commerce.

The Utah Senate is the first legislative body to pass a Firearms Freedom Act in the 2010 legislative session.  In 2009, both Tennessee and Montana passed the Act into state law.

NULLIFICATION

The principle behind such legislation is nullification, which has a long history in the American tradition. When a state ‘nullifies’ a federal law, it is proclaiming that the law in question is void and inoperative, or ‘non-effective,’ within the boundaries of that state; or, in other words, not a law as far as the state is concerned. Implied in such legislation is that the state apparatus will enforce the act against all violations – in order to protect the liberty of the state’s citizens.

All across the country, activists and state-legislators are pressing for similar legislation, to nullify specific federal laws within their states.

A proposed Constitutional Amendment to effectively ban national health care will go to a vote in Arizona in 2010, and the Virginia Senate this week passed a similar bill, which now awaits action from the state house.

Fourteen states now have some form of medical marijuana laws – in direct contravention to federal laws which state that the plant is illegal in all circumstances. And, massive state nullification of the 2005 Real ID Act has rendered the law nearly void.

NEXT STEP

SB11 has been transmitted to the Utah House, where it already received its first reading.  It’s currently in the House Rules committee awaiting further action.

CLICK HERE to view the Tenth Amendment Center’s printable Firearms Freedom Act Brochure (pdf)

CLICK HERE to view the Tenth Amendment Center’s Firearms Freedom Act Legislative Tracking Page

Michael Boldin [send him email] is the founder of the Tenth Amendment Center. He was raised in Milwaukee, WI, and currently resides in Los Angeles, CA. Follow him on twitter – @michaelboldin and Facebook.

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