One of the two main criteria for nullification to work is passion and
the sheer number of states involved. If 20 or more states nullify
ObamaCare there would be no way to enforce it. Read on.
The time to step up is now. We fight not just for our country, but for
our families and for those not yet born. The information below is
voluminous and it is merely a primer. Taking back our country requires
understanding the power of the states in contrast to federal power. It
requires we grasp the historical context of how the federal government
absconded with powers the founders clearly never intended it to possess.
The answer is clear - a lack of understanding and apathy. If you find
you are too busy to take the time to understand your role in taking back
this country and ending the fiscal insanity, then your contribution to
this country's demise is a forgone conclusion. Know that you will watch
in dismay your children and their children's future abandoned to those
whose very existence is to take from you and continue taking from you,
leaving nothing but small remnants of a once great spirit of
independence, until that too is gone. If you are prone to apathy, leave
this page. If you are ready to begin the fight towards your freedom,
makes an excellent implicit case
for why nullification is the only way back to federalism and the Tenth
Amendment Center provides extensive education and commentary on the
subject itself. Let us start with Michelle as she questions the ability
of Republicans to lead us out of the sinkhole:
Now, I want you to read every word of what Andy McCarthy has to say about the GOP leadership’s abandonment of Jim Bunning — and what it says about the lack of
Republican fortitude in the war against the permanent, ever-growing
Andy speaks the truth. Hard truths. And fiscal conservatives/Tea Party
activists need to shout them from the rooftops. I’ve invoked Phyllis
Schlafly many times over the past year in urging the GOP to provide true
choices instead of echoes. Actions speak louder than words. So, alas,
does feckless inaction.
Maine’s Susan Collins took to the Senate floor to assure Americans that Bunning’s radical views about Congress’s not spending yet
more billions it doesn’t have “do not represent a majority of the
Republican caucus.” And sure enough, they didn’t. Once Bunning backed
down, the measure passed by a whopping 78-19.
Think about that. We are talking about $10 billion in a year when
Leviathan is slated to spend a total of $3.6 trillion. The majority of
Senate Republicans joined Democrats in concluding that the allocation of
every one of these 3.6 thousand billion dollars is so vital that not
one of them could be sacrificed in favor of unemployment insurance. So
another $10 billion just gets heaped on the already unfathomable
trillion-dollar deficits stacking year upon year.
Read the entire post. The realization that salvation exits with neither
political party is an a priori
and tacit argument the federal
government is responsible for creating this mess and cannot
design, be the architect of solutions to restoring fiscal
responsibility and individual freedom. This is not to say principled
politicians do not exist in Washington - I can think of a few - but most
politicians are just that...politicians. Self-interested, disconnected,
contemptuous elitists. For those in the Tea Party, it is a calculated
risk that your candidate somehow is cut from a different cloth. In
reality, you will fare no better than the average citizen. As I write
these words, salivating, power hungry impostors wait to prey on the
wishes and dreams of Tea Party members everywhere. I am your candidate,
they will say. Even those with honest designs are not immune to the
corrupting influence of Washington, for the system is fundamentally
broken and it is impossible to remove a sitting U.S. Congress member. It
is not, however, impossible to recall a governor or a state legislator
and it is here that Tea Parties, nullification, and real power collide
in the perfect storm of the restoration of constitutional governance.
Those of you who follow this blog recall that a group of organizations
successfully changed Senate GOP healthcare policy. The history of those
efforts are here
and cross-posted at Politico
Be forewarned, you will not like the narrative. If you find yourself
surprised you are out of touch with the political reality we find
ourselves in today:
After weeks of refusing to embrace the “obstructionist” label as a virtue, Senate Republicans finally saw the light and late
last week began to use the parliamentary tools at their disposal to
delay a final vote on health care.
Until then, with the exception of South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint,
Republican lawmakers had refused to use Senate rules and procedures to
obstruct the passage of the health care bill being pushed by Senate
Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and run out the clock on Obamacare.
Some prominent Republican senators and members of their staffs had even
let it be known they actually believed passage of the Reid health care
bill and enactment of Obamacare would benefit GOP candidates in the
November midterm elections.
This GOP strategy of expedient complicity enraged the conservative base,
roused talk radio show hosts and bloggers and even provoked a backlash
from the chairman of the Republican National Committee. The Social
Security Institute and the National Tax Limitation Committee joined with
Tea Party Support and Gun Owners of America to convey this outrage to
the Senate Republican leadership through letters, e-mails and telephone
calls from the grass roots to GOP senators’ offices.
It took a figurative gun to the collective head of the GOP to add a
little starch to collapsing spines. Had the switch occurred just a
smidgen later, Scott Brown's win in Massachusetts may well have occurred
after the passage of ObamaCare.
To the GOPs credit, they continue to stick to obstruction and the
promise of obstruction regarding ObamaCare. Their performance at the
bipartisan healthcare "summit" was nothing short of amazing. However,
the same tendencies against fiscal restraint still exist for many in the
party, as outlined by Michelle in her post.
So what is one to do? The answer - nullification. No, nullification is
not secession and no, nullification is not a violent act. The Tenth
Amendment Center describes nullification as follows
First, nullification has, in fact, been somewhat successful in the past and more recently as well. Second, as President Obama loves to say, “Let me be clear”: “Official” nullification has ALREADY
Before I explain why “official” nullification has already happened, let
me briefly give some examples of what nullification is NOT
Nullification is not secession or insurrection, but neither is it
unconditional or unlimited submission. Nullification is not something
that requires any decision, statement or action from any branch of the
federal government. Nullification is not the result of obtaining a
favorable court ruling. Nullification is not the petitioning of the
federal government to start doing or to stop doing anything.
Nullification doesn’t depend on any federal law being repealed.
Nullification does not require permission from any person or institution
outside of one’s own state.
So just what IS “official” nullification you might be asking?
Nullification begins with a decision made in your state legislature to
resist a federal law deemed to be unconstitutional. It usually involves a
bill, which is passed by both houses and is signed by your governor. In
some cases, it might be approved by the voters of your state directly,
in a referendum. It may change your state’s statutory law or it might
even amend your state constitution. It is a refusal on the part of your
state government to cooperate with, or enforce any federal law it deems
to be unconstitutional.
Nullification carries with it the force of state law. It cannot be
legally repealed by Congress without amending the US Constitution. It
cannot be lawfully abolished by an executive order. It cannot be
overruled by the Supreme Court. It is the people of a state asserting
their constitutional rights by acting as a political society in their
highest sovereign capacity. It is the moderate, middle way that wisely
avoids harsh remedies like secession on the one hand and slavish,
unlimited submission on the other. It is the constitutional remedy for
unconstitutional federal laws.
With the exception of a Constitutional amendment, the federal government
cannot oppose (except perhaps rhetorically), a state’s decision to
nullify an unconstitutional federal law without resorting to extra-legal
measures. But such measures would more than likely backfire, since most
Americans still affirm that might does not make right.
There is no question as to whether or when “official” nullification will
happen: It has ALREADY HAPPENED. In fact, not only has it happened
recently, it has been a success! Perhaps this is why the federal
government hopes you will never hear about it. According to the Tenth
25 states over the past 2 years have passed resolutions and binding laws denouncing and refusing to implement the Bush-era law [REAL
ID Act]..While the law is still on the books in D.C., its
implementation has been “delayed” numerous times in response to this
massive state resistance, and in practice, is virtually null and void...
...There are a whole host of peaceful actions that a state government
can adopt if that day comes or appears to be just over the horizon.
These measures range from county sheriffs requiring that federal agents receive
written permi... from the sheriff before acting in their county, to
setting up a Federal Tax escrow account, which could potentially
de-fund unconstitutional federal activities by requiring that all
federal taxes come first to the state’s Department of Revenue.
Besides state interposition, the other thing Washington would have to
consider, is whether enough of their agents would actually obey orders
to punish people for exercising their constitutional rights. There is a
significant chance that enough of them would either publicly or
privately decide in advance to ignore such orders. As the probability of
this increases, it becomes more likely that Washington will not risk
overplaying its hand. The reality is that Washington just doesn’t have
the manpower to enforce all their unconstitutional laws if enough states
choose to defy them.
More on federal tax escrow accounts and the willingness of federal
agents to execute orders deemed unconstitutional below.
For more information about nullification I strongly encourage the reader
to visit the Tenth Amendment Center (TAC
type in nullification in the search bar. Lots of very interesting
reading. Additional information can be found at the Social Security Institute
The TAC also writes Our Goal is Federalism, not “States’ Rights”
Foundationally, states don’t have rights as a government, states have power. Power at the federal and state level is derived from
the consent of the governed, the people, who do have rights our
governing agreements were designed to protect. Inspired by careful
historical study, years of debate, considerations, and the declarations
of colonies, towns, and associations (prior to July of 1776) the
fundamental rights of the people were articulated in the preamble of our
Declaration of Independence...
...Let every member of every organization supporting state sovereignty
and federalism cleanse the language so our opponents cannot easily
attack the wrong target. Should they target federalism and the original
meaning we can defeat them with truth. Freedom is not outdated, federal
government is an agreement among the people of different sovereign
states, the 10th Amendment has never been repealed, and virtue is still
necessary for securing our posterity’s future rights to life, liberty,
and the pursuit of happiness
So if I were to ask you to identify the final arbiter of the U.S.
Constitution, the correct answer is not the U.S. Supreme Court, but
rather the states themselves. Allowing the U.S. Supreme Court - part of
the judicial branch of the federal government - to rule on federal
powers presents a problem. Dr. Larry Hunter informs us
The resolution explicitly disclaimed that the national government was the judge of its own powers. Allowing it to judge its own
powers would be akin to permitting an agent, rather than the principal,
to determine the breadth of the agent’s authority. The law of agency at
its most basic level recognizes that an agent can act as such only
subject to the consent and control of the principal to whom the agent
owes a fiduciary duty (see Restatement [Second] of Agency, sec. 1). Just
as A, B, and C, the partners in a business firm, decide what authority
to give their agent Z, so the parties to the Constitution decide the
powers of the national government. In light of such logic, Jefferson
proclaimed in the resolution that “each party [to the federal compact]
has an equal right to judge for itself, as well of infractions as of the
mode and measures of redress” (Virginia Commission 1964, 144). For
Jefferson, the people acting through their states — the authentic
organs of government — were the final arbiters of constitutional
interpretation. Jefferson feared that giving the federal government the
exclusive power to interpret the Constitution through the Supreme Court
would lead to arbitrary government. As John Taylor later wrote
in his Construction Construed and Constitutions Vindicated, “a
jurisdiction, limited by its own will, is an unlimited jurisdiction”
( 1970, 131). With the states stripped of the power to construe
the Constitution, the enforcement of constitutional limitations on the
central government would be chimerical. Thus, it is not surprising that
none of the convictions under the Sedition Act were appealed to the
Federalist-dominated Supreme Court. The Republicans did not want to give
the Court an opportunity to set a dangerous precedent.
If we remain sheep, apathy lays the foundation for us and our
descendants of a people enslaved to the whims of a capricious few.
Nullification begins with the state legislative and executive bodies,
when the previously lorded over sheep transform into self-reliant
wolves. It requires of us and our state leaders great strength of
character and leadership. If they are not up to the task - we can
replace them. At times, we must be prepared to stand with them
shoulder-to-shoulder - literally and figuratively. The goal of any
nullification movement is critical mass. Using ObamaCare as an example -
assuming it passes, if enough states nullify the law and governors
coordinate the effort with the will and strength of the people at their
backs, ObamaCare will collapse. Federal repercussions will be swift
When I talk to people about these principles – most agree, like Martin Luther King Jr. said in his famous “Letter from Birmingham
jail,” that there is a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws. But,
they’ll often ask, even if states pass laws to nullify unjust and
unconstitutional federal acts, the feds will still continue to tax us
and punish our states financially for not complying – so what can we
One idea, which will take a great deal of courage on the part of the
People and their state governments, is to establish what’s being called a
“Federal Tax Escrow Account” or a “State Authority and Federal Tax
Already introduced in Georgia (HB877), Oklahoma (HB2810), and Washington (HB2712), such laws would require that all federal
taxes come first to the state’s Department of Revenue. A panel of
legislators would assay the Constitutional appropriateness of the
Federal Budget, and then forward to the federal government a percentage
of the federal tax dollars that are delineated as legal and
Constitutionally justified. The remainder of those dollars would be
assigned to budgetary items that are currently funded through federal
allocations and grants or returned to the people.
Naturally, the U.S. Supreme Court would label such an act
unconstitutional, but as stated above, such an action by the Supreme
Court amounts to empty words and rhetoric. The natural progression of
such actions, given enough states and a determined populace, will be the
nonviolent return of federalism. While it is possible events unfold in
such a manner leading to a showdown between, for example, national guard
troops and/or civilians and the U.S. military, it is highly unlikely
the U.S. Military will follow orders that are obviously
unconstitutional. After the forceful removal of guns from citizens in
the aftermath of Katrina, many in law enforcement and the military began
a serious a deliberate debate on the issue. Oath Keepers
states the following on their site:
The time is now near at hand which must probably determine, whether Americans are to be, Freemen, or Slaves; whether they are to
have any property they can call their own; whether their Houses, and
Farms, are to be pillaged and destroyed, and they consigned to a State
of Wretchedness from which no human efforts will probably deliver them.
The fate of unborn Millions will now depend, under God, on the Courage
and Conduct of this army” -- Gen. George Washington, to his troops
before the battle of Long Island
Such a time is near at hand again. The fate of unborn millions will now
depend, under God, on the Courage and Conduct of this Army -- and this
Marine Corps, This Air Force, This Navy and the National Guard and
police units of these sovereign states.
Oath Keepers is a non-partisan association of currently serving
military, reserves, National Guard, peace officers, fire-fighters, and
veterans who swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution
against all enemies, foreign and domestic … and meant it. We won’t “just
Included in the link is a list of orders member will not obey.
We can take great lessons from Martin Luther King, Jr. and his approach
to the civil rights movement, as well as Gandhi and the issue of British
colonialism in India. A passive-aggressive approach can work if
It is no longer the case that most of us sacrifice for our freedoms. We
know of those who did so in the past and do so even today. We honor them
on special holidays and then go about our business. Lately, some find
themselves prone to attend rallies, send faxes, call and email their
federal representatives, only to sit back and watch Washington arrogance
ignore our calls for sanity.
It is now clear to many the way forward - the only way forward - is
through the states. We may slow our slide into fiscal disaster and
European style socialism with leveraged federal pressure, but inaction
at the state level - read nullification - we only delay the inevitable.
So now is the time to begin. Now is the time to transform.
The sovereignty of the British at the time of the War of Independence
was in the Parliament. The founders knew this and ensured the
constitution would not allow for concentration in a centralized power
for a few to lord over the many. The final arbiter of the constitution
is not the Supreme Court, but rather the states. This is something
rarely taught in law school and constitutional courses concentrate on
case law and not on the historical context of the founding document
itself. When the historical context is reviewed, it is clear, as
Jefferson warned, that allowing a federal judicial system to check the
federal powers was patently absurd.
The Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions of 1798, written in secret by
Jefferson and Madison in response to the Alien and Sedition Act, which
would have jailed them for speaking out against the government, clearly
made the above case and the case for nullification. Nullification is not
secession - it is a state saying the federal powers have no right to
execute a law within the borders of that state. Now look back to the
context of the War of Independence. A tiny island off the coast of
France has now been replaced by a city in DC. We are back where we
Perish as sheep, or thrive as a wolves.
Highly Recommended Reading:
The Politically Incorrect Guide(tm) to the Constitution
The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History
The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Founding Fathers
Listen to Judge Napolitano
as he talks about nullification and
secession. Personally, I don't believe secession is necessary nor
really an option. The very thought of it conjures images of violent
battles. Nullification is the peaceful means to taking back our
liberties under the Constitution.
State Sovereignty is About You!
Health Care Nullification: Things have just gotten
Nullification: The states have a “nuclear option,” too
Federal Law is Always Supreme. Right?
Note To GOP: Our Freedoms Are No Longer Negotiable
So… What Next?
The answer is simple as I indicate above. Forget the courts. Lawsuits
are a band-aid that will work and only if the process is expedited and
the courts take the case up now and place an injunction on all aspects
of ObamaCare so that Obama is unable to construct the scaffolding of his
takeover with newly instantiated and collected taxes, or impact
existing healthcare in any way. The entire bill must hover in limbo
until resolution. As Americans have a short memory, my worry here is, if
the end result is not in our favor, then we will just accept this until
the impact of the law itself makes it impossible to ignore the
consequences. By then, it will too late. When I say forget the courts, I
am specifically stating that your efforts should be geared towards the
state legislators and governors of your state. Let the lawyers handle
the courts, but leave your big egg out the basket and engage. A passive
approach that observes the track of legislation through the federal
court system is a recipe for disaster. Pivot to your state officials.
My question to the reader is, if the three branches of government all
agree, which now amounts to rule by tyranny, we will have no additional
redress other than acceptance, revolution, or an attempt at non-violent
nullification. It would seem to me the later is the best choice if done
correctly on a massive scale. The reason for the urgency is that
passions are now high and it is such times that are ripe for a solution
such as nullification. Later, it would be almost impossible and would
only occur when we are subject to such a level of tyranny that very
likely our country will be near ruination; that taking our country back
would be like taking your car back after it is stolen, smashed around,
and then set on fire. Not much really worth taking back.
My level of confidence the federal courts will do anything is low.
First, an injunction against major parts of the bill would be necessary
so that taxes are not collected, and any other immediate impact to state
budgets are blocked until resolution of the lawsuit. Is your confidence
level high this would happen? If this does not happen, we will rapidly
slide down the slope to bankruptcy at the state level and then the
national level. At what point is it appropriate to admit the court route
is not working and stronger action is needed? If we wait too long, the
opportunity will have passed or, if it still exists, it does so because
we are in such a dire situation the outcome will still leave us in
shambles as I indicate above.
I honestly do not believe, and history bears me out on this, that the
federal courts are going to get involved in the legislative process
(they have in only a few cases) and they rarely limit federal power. Our
saving grace may be Obama putting his foot in his mouth and insulting
the court in public during the SOTU. I can just see Justice Roberts
rubbing his hands together in anticipation of this making it to his
Still, a court solution is a band-aid. Under both parties we have seen
the growth of government. It is time to remove the purse-stings from DC
and spit out the tyrants. We are the power in this country. We have been
lulled over the centuries into believing otherwise, but as indicated in
the essay above, it is clear what our founding fathers meant.