Seven years ago this month, I starting doing work for the Tenth Amendment Center.

It was at the dawn of the Tea Party movement. During a rally in my hometown, it kind of hit me that change would require more than standing in a park in the rain holding a sign.

I’ll be honest, I was pretty much still a typical “conservative Republican” at this point – albeit with a libertarian streak. I listened to a lot of Rush Limbaugh and thought Barack Obama was the biggest problem. But I’d always had this intuitive sense that decentralization of power was the key to liberty. And I knew that the federal government was supposed to be limited – per the Tenth Amendment.

When I first came across the Tenth Amendment Center, I thought these guys might be a little crazy. But they seemed to be offering some practical solutions, and they were looking for people to get involved. This was during the days when the TAC had a state chapter model, so I filled out a form to be the Kentucky state chapter coordinator.

Here’s the dirty little secret.

I had no idea what I was doing.

I knew next to nothing about the Constitution. I’d never heard of nullification. I’d never done any kind of political activism.

But I had one thing going for me. I could write. I apparently knew enough to fool Michael Boldin into bringing me on. And it wasn’t long before I became the national communications director.

Boldin hasn’t been able to get rid of me since.

The decision to hit the “volunteer” button on the TAC website changed my life. I started reading and studying. I learned about the original understanding of the Constitution. I learned about nullification. I even learned how to do a little activism. Over the last seven years, I’ve written literally hundreds of articles. I’ve penned three books available in print, along with three e-books. I’ve appeared on radio and television shows in both the U.S. and overseas. I’ve spoken at events across the country, and I’ve testified before state legislative bodies. I’ve helped write model legislation that has been enacted into law in several states.

Here’s the moral to this story. If I can do this – anybody can. I wasn’t some kind of legal expert, or a scholar. I was just a dude with some general talents and a willingness to get involved.

It’s been a wild seven years. I’m looking forward to many more.

Oh – here’s the very first article I ever published for the TAC. Fittingly, it’s titled, “It’s Up to Us.”

Mike Maharrey

The 10th Amendment

“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.”



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