Mississippi: Reinforcing the 10th Amendment

On March 5th, 2009, legislators in Mississippi introduced House Concurrent Resolution 69 (HC0069) to “reinforce the fundamental principle and authority of State Sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution…”

Steven Palazzo is the principle author of the resolution along with 29 additional authors – find status updates here.

Here’s the full text of the resolution:

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Last Chance for Liberty?

by Michael Gaddy, LewRockwell.com

While I have not changed my beliefs on the illegal, immoral policies and actions of the state, somehow, in the past few months, I have, in the opinion of some readers, changed political affiliations. When I was writing of the illegal wars of the warfare/welfare state, I was often asked to leave the country, called a traitor, a coward, and accused of being a commie liberal. Now, since I have attacked the illegal, immoral actions of the welfare/warfare Obama administration regarding the Second Amendment, I am accused of being a fascist and questioned as to why I supported Bush and his torture of “enemy combatants,” and the Patriot Act.

To many Americans, calling the state on its many crimes when their chosen candidate/party is in power automatically places one in the enemy camp. Freedom, liberty and the Constitution have been swept away in the flood of party politics. Nowhere is the folly of allowing party politics to frame the debate on freedom better illustrated than in Lew Rockwell’s newest, The Left, The Right, and the State.

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Rethinking the Constitution, Completely

by David Gordon, Mises.org

[The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Constitution. By Kevin R.C. Gutzman. Regnery Publishing, 2007. Xiii + 258 pgs.]

Kevin Gutzman gives his readers much more than they had a right to expect. The “Politically Incorrect Guide” series in which his book appears aims at a popular audience: its goal is to correct commonly held myths of leftist propaganda.

Gutzman eminently fulfills this goal, but his book cannot be called an elementary work. Quite the contrary, The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Constitution is a major contribution to American constitutional history.

Gutzman is a leading authority on the Virginia ratification debates on the Constitution, and he uses his research to great effect. He has been much influenced by the pioneering originalist scholar Raoul Berger, but he strengthens and extends Berger’s views.

The principal thesis of the book is that the Jeffersonian, states’ rights understanding of America’s founding and the Constitution is correct. When the American colonies assembled in the Continental Congress and adopted the Declaration of Independence in 1776, they did not create a new nation, Abraham Lincoln to the contrary notwithstanding.

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Alaska Resolution: Sovereignty Under the 10th Amendment

Legislators in Alaska introduced House Resolution 9 on 02-25-09.  It reads:

WHEREAS the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads,  “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”; and

WHEREAS the Tenth Amendment defines the total scope of federal power as being that specifically granted by the Constitution of the United States and no more; and

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Jefferson’s Arguments for Nullification and Limited Government

by Gennady Stolyarov II

The doctrine of nullification, i.e., the idea that states have the right to unilaterally render void an act of the federal government that they perceive to be contrary to the Constitution, finds its origins in the writings of Thomas Jefferson, most notably his 1798 Kentucky Resolutions, written to protest the Federalist Congress’s passage of the Alien and Sedition Acts.

Thomas Jefferson’s Kentucky Resolutions claim that the U. S. Constitution was a compact among the several states-whereby the states delegated certain limited powers to the U.S. government; any undelegated power exercised by the U. S. government is thus void.

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Standing up for Liberty

by Ray Bilger

The conclusion of my last article read, “If there is any hope for America, it lies with We The People taking back our country from the crooks and criminals in Wash., D.C. who are running our country into the ground… There is a new hope for America… and it involves the States and the People working together, as the Founders intended, to make the America of all our dreams.”

The State governments of the original Thirteen States of the United States of America established the federal government to act as their agent in a world of interdependent nations.  Those original Thirteen States did not have to establish a federal government, but because those states collectively wanted to be represented to the world as one whole nation of States, they chose to have an agent, our federal government, to represent the collective interests of the several States.  Thus, the federal government, as our agent, is at all times accountable to the States, and to We The People!

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The States’ Rights Tradition Nobody Knows

In 1798, the legislatures of Virginia and Kentucky approved resolutions that affirmed the states’ right to resist federal encroachments on their powers. If the federal government has the exclusive right to judge the extent of its own powers, warned the resolutions’ authors (James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, respectively), it will continue to grow – regardless of elections, the separation of powers, and other much-touted limits on government power. The Virginia Resolutions spoke of the states’ right to “interpose” between the federal government and the people of the state; the Kentucky Resolutions (in a 1799 follow-up to the original resolutions) used the term “nullification” – the states, they said, could nullify unconstitutional federal laws.

These ideas became known as the “Principles of ’98.” Their subsequent impact on American history, according to the standard narrative, was pretty much confined to South Carolina’s nullification of the tariffs of 1828 and 1832. That is demonstrably false, as I shall show below. But it isn’t just that these ideas are neglected in the usual telling; as I discovered not long ago, these principles are positively despised by neoconservatives like Max Boot and the leftists at the New York Times (or do I repeat myself?). Neither one, in their reviews of The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History, so much as mentioned Jefferson’s name in connection with the Principles of ’98. It is hard to view such an omission as anything but deliberate. To mention Jefferson’s name is to lend legitimacy to ideas that nationalists of left and right alike detest, so they simply leave him out of the picture.

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U.S. to yield marijuana jurisdiction to states?

by Bob Egelko, SF Chronicle

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder is sending strong signals that President Obama – who as a candidate said states should be allowed to make their own rules on medical marijuana – will end raids on pot dispensaries in California.

Asked at a Washington news conference Wednesday about Drug Enforcement Administration raids in California since Obama took office last month, Holder said the administration has changed its policy.

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