The Burlington Free Press reports from Vermont,

Eight helicopters on loan from the Illinois National Guard were expected to arrive Tuesday night in Vermont to help the Vermont National Guard deliver food, medicine, water and other supplies to 13 Vermont towns cut off from the rest of the state in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Irene.

The outside helicopter support is needed because all six of the Vermont Guard’s Black Hawk helicopters are still in Iraq, where they and 55 Vermont soldiers are wrapping up a yearlong hospital transport mission, said Lt. Lloyd Goodrow, spokesman for the Vermont Guard.

Hurricane Irene reminded the East Coast why Mother Nature can be one of the most dangerous forces on the planet, when she struck hard this past weekend. When all was said and done, dozens of lives were lost and many more left without a home, while billions of dollars in damage was caused. One of the States that felt the wrath of Irene was Vermont, which saw widespread flooding and a few deaths. First responders, volunteer organizations, and neighbors were all on hand to help with the rescue and rebuilding efforts as the hurricane exited the State. Outside help had to be requested however, as all six of the Vermont National Guard’s Black Hawk helicopters were serving in Iraq. Luckily, New Hampshire and Illinois’ National Guards came to the rescue, but this still serves as a reminder of the effect that misuse of the militia has on our country.

The invasion and subsequent invasion of Iraq, an undeclared war in violation of the United States Constitution, has been going on for several years. Despite the United States Code describing the National Guard as the “first line of defense” for the homeland, they have been off defending the territory of another country.

Beyond being involved in an occupation unauthorized by the Constitution, the National Guard has been under federal control also in violation of the Constitution. The Constitution specifically lists three situations where the Federal Government can call upon the militia. According to Article 1, Section 8, Clause 15, Congress can pass laws “calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions.” The Militia Act of 1903, also known as the Dick Act, renamed this “militia” into the “National Guard,” setting the stage for today’s almost total nationalization of our state-level defense.

This is just one of the many ways that the Federal Government’s expansion of government and further centralization in violation of the Constitution has hurt America. States’ Rights has become a movement growing in response however, with nullification being explored by numerous States on a variety of issues. The proper method here for restoring the Constitution’s militia requirements is returning control over it to the Governor, by passing a bill called the “Defend The Guard Act.”

The “Defend The Guard Act” would allow for the Federal Government to call the National Guard into service in the event of invasion or rebellion, or to “execute the Laws of the Union,” provided that said Laws were made in pursuance of the delegated powers in the Constitution of the United States. But even here, approval from the Governor would be required.

For the text of the bill, please visit the Tenth Amendment Center’s draft legislation located here.

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