Those who oppose Montana SB 114-The Sheriffs First Bill have incorrectly expressed that the States are subservient to the federal government according to the United States Constitution (USC).

However, nothing could be further from the truth regarding the political association and federal system designed by founding fathers like James Madison—the father of the USC—who was among the first State participants to pass a nullification bill against the federal government only one decade after the States ratified the USC. Likewise, the Federalist Papers reveal the understanding of even the most nationalistic-monarchical founder father (Alexander Hamilton) that the States must interpose against federal usurpation. This usurpation was to be watched and determined not by the United States Supreme Court, but by the State government. To ignore the historical, legal and political facts of our founding is a serious act of opposition to the freedom supposedly protected in this union of States, and it destroys the very purpose for which the union was formed.

It has been stated that Senator Jim Shockley claims that the Civil War settled the issue of federal supremacy over the states. Does this mean that war is the ultimate decider of constitutional limitations on the federal government? I thought the USC and the consent of the governed were this American union’s standard? If war is the standard applied regarding constitutional authority, then we do not live in a free, constitutional republic. Rather, we live in a conquered, subdued district of the American empire, where the consent of the governed is not the foundation of civil society. Even worse, the consent of the governed is a political tool used by politicians to make citizens think they are free simply because they have the “right to vote,” all the while, shirking the weightier duties that really make the difference between slavery and freedom.

Given those holding such views (and those who support them), freedom apparently has taken a large leap backwards to 1768 and Great Britain rules again under the divine right of the kings. This is a very dangerous proposition expressed by Shockley and others—one from which many of our founding generation fought and died to supposedly liberate their posterity. It is amazing how otherwise intelligent men and women who claim to love America and Montana can propose such an anti-freedom maxim—a maxim which enslaves us and our posterity. What should be understood is this: since the federal government has in fact usurped so much power from the States since the War of Federal Aggression in the 1860s, political science and balance requires that the States now stand up, take notice and reclaim what was taken from them by force and bribe between then and now.

Based upon the actual meaning, character and nature of the USC (assuming that–and not conquest–is your standard), it is the duty of the States to protect their own sovereignty and authority, as well as their citizens. No federal government branch will do this, as has been so eloquently analyzed by American jurists of the past. The proof of that fact has been sufficiently evident for many decades and is becoming more and more pressing upon our conscience. Yet, those who would shirk their duty and responsibility on the State level would point to the federal courts as our supposed protector of the Tenth Amendment in the USC. This is shameful and a political atrocity.

Those of you who oppose these ideas should read one article of many I have written on this subject as simply a way of opening eyes wide shut to the reality that you may be wrong and have been deceived. If after having ardently studied the pertinent issues, facts and philosophies concerning political power, which provided our founding generation with the tools necessary to execute their own state nullification bills (of 1768, 1798 and 1799) and sign the Declaration of Independence, you should at least be able to more articulately express sufficient political reasons than the ones stated by the opponents of this bill. So far, the reasons fall wholly short of excusable, much less justifiable.

This issue of State Sovereignty is not going away with your vote. Justice, freedom and sovereignty require it.

Timothy Baldwin
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