On issues from healthcare, to the right to keep and bear arms, and surveillance, at least 13 nullification bills moved forward in states this week, with three of those signed into law. (scroll down to read the full report)

Signed by Gov. Jack Dalrymple, North Dakota this week became the 14th state to pass a “right to try act” into law. Now one of the fastest growing nullification efforts in the country, these laws take on FDA restrictions that can kill terminal patients.

The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act prohibits general access to experimental drugs. However, under the expanded access provision of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, 21 U.S.C. 360bbb, patients with serious or immediately life-threatening diseases may access experimental drugs after receiving express FDA approval.

Right to Try Laws bypass the FDA expanded access program and allow people to obtain experimental drugs from manufacturers without obtaining FDA approval. This procedure directly conflicts with the federal expanded access program and effectively nullifies it in practice.

“The Right to Try Act is a no-brainer,” said Mike Maharrey of the Tenth Amendment Center. “When someone is on their deathbed, the fact that FDA regulations would let them die rather than try, has got to be one of the most inhumane policies of the federal government. Every state should nullify the FDA like this.”

Right to Try Acts were also sent to the Governor’s desk in Tennessee and Oklahoma. Similar bills were passed by wide margins in one or more chambers in Illinois, Florida, Texas, and Nevada.


In another act to protect health freedom from unconstitutional federal acts, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed HB2643 into law. Introduced State Rep. Justin Olson, the new law prohibits the state in various ways from “from using any personnel or financial resources to enforce, administer or cooperate with the Affordable Care Act.”

“If the federal government is going to enact a law, then the federal government needs to enforce that law,” said Olson. “We’re not going to do it.”


In Tennessee the state House and Senate passed SB1110, sending the bill to Gov. Haslam’s desk.  Introduced by Sen. Richard Briggs, the bill is an important foundational first step to block most federal gun control in the state.  It would ban Tennessee state or local public funds, personnel or property from being used for the “implementation, regulation, or enforcement of any federal law, executive order, rule or regulation regulating the ownership, use, or possession of firearms, ammunition, or firearm accessories” if such use “would result in the violation of Tennessee statutory or common law or the Constitution of Tennessee.”


In North Dakota, a bill to strictly limit the surveillance use of drones by government was signed into law by Gov. Dalrymple, and a similar bill passed both houses in Washington State.

Washington State also passed a bill to block the use of stingrays, devices generally loaned or paid for by the FBI that local police use to mimic a cellphone tower and intercept all communications in and out.

And in Virginia, a bill to limit the use of surveillance devices known as ALPRs and help block federally-run nationwide license plate tracking program was sent to the Governor’s desk for a signature or a veto.

Michael Boldin

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