Originally published February 16 2009
Resolutions to Affirm State Sovereignty may be Prelude to Secession
by Barbara L. Minton
(NaturalNews) Nine state legislatures have either passed or introduced bills intended to reaffirm their state's sovereignty as laid out in the Ninth and Tenth Amendments of the Constitution. Another twenty states are expected to introduce similar measures this year. While the ramifications of these resolutions are still uncertain, one thing is clear. People are sick and tired of the federal government's usurpation of power not granted to it by the Constitution. They have had enough of fear based economic terrorism and underhanded promotion of policies and procedures that bypass public scrutiny and the will of the people.
Hearing that the Obama administration is pushing for immediate passage of the nearly $1 trillion deficit spending plan without allowing time for legislators to read the 1400 page document may be the last straw. Some who have read parts of the package have found it to be slanted toward more Democratic-supported social welfare programs, as well as laying the groundwork for sweeping health care reform that should be subject to scrutiny and debate by the people.
It is time to resurrect the tenth amendment
The Constitution applies to the federal government. Its sole purpose is to spell out what the federal government can do. Today, even the most casual review of federal government activities makes it clear there is very little that it does which is actually authorized by the Constitution.
The Tenth Amendment states, "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." It means that the federal government is authorized to exercise only those powers which are specifically given to it in the Constitution.
The Tenth Amendment is despised by those who suck the mother's milk of big government because it was drafted to enshrine in the Constitution what the founders and the original states had learned from experience, that small, limited government is the best government.
With power grab after power grab, the Congress and the President have disregarded the Tenth Amendment. The average American now seems to believe that the mandate to govern resides with the federal government, and apparently the executive branch as well as the legislators believe this too. Under the Constitution, the central government has only one mandate, to protect the inherent rights of the people. Yet the federal government of today seems to have nothing but contempt for the rights of the people.
For too long, Americans have allowed their politicians to interpret and bend the rules of the Constitution. This has gone on so long that the unchecked, self-anointed power of politicians has allowed them to believe that the Constitution is no longer relevant and that they are above any laws. The resolutions reaffirming state sovereignty are the first steps in the attempt to put the federal government back in its place as intended by the Constitution.
Text of resolutions reveals the extent of the push for state sovereignty
Some of the resolutions reveal full blown efforts to regain lost sovereignty. Others appear to be testing the waters, as though their state's legislatures may be just awakening from a long slumber. Missouri's version takes aim at a specific policy decision made by the Obama administration, the Federal Freedom of Choice Act, a sweeping reform intended to make abortion a legal alternative in all 50 states.
According to the Missouri resolution, "Whereas, the Federal Freedom of Choice Act would nullify any federal or state law enacted, adopted or implemented before, on, or after the date of enactment and would effectively prevent the State of Missouri from enacting similar protective measures in the future...the members of the House of Representatives of the Ninety-fifth General Assembly, hereby declare our sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all power and hereby declare our sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States."
The Arizona bill is a broad statement of the right to sovereignty and its ability to supersede any other action, claiming sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment "over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States. That this Resolution serves as notice and demand to the federal government, as our agent, to cease and desist, effective immediately, mandates that are beyond the scope of these constitutionally delegated powers. That all compulsory federal legislation that directs states to comply under threat of civil or criminal penalties or sanctions or requires states to pass legislation or lose federal funding be prohibited or repealed."
New Hampshire Concurrent Resolution 6 is a direct statement of the desire for sweeping change, stating "any Act by the Congress of the United States, Executive order of the President...which assumes a power not delegated to the government of the United States of America by the Constitution...shall constitute a nullification of the Constitution for the United States of America by the [Federal] government." This resolution goes on to state several cases, including further infringement on the right to bear arms, which would cause the state to invoke these measures.
The resolution from the state of Washington's House Joint Memorial 4009 is less aggressive but as broad in scope, taking the form of a cease and desist warning that serves as a "Notice and Demand to the federal government to maintain the balance of powers where the Constitution of the United States established it and to cease and desist, effective immediately, any and all mandates that are beyond the scope of its constitutionally delegated powers."
A resolution is not a law
A resolution is a statement, not a binding law. Just because these resolutions were proposed does not mean they represent consensus in the state legislature. Like the various resolutions for Bush's impeachment, resolutions may not reflect the beliefs of a majority in state legislatures.
Still, the fact that two states, California and Georgia, have already passed their versions of state sovereignty may be setting the stage for secession down the road if the federal government continues to show its scorn for the Constitution. The Oklahoma resolution has already passed in the House and is awaiting vote in the state Senate to be codified.
Ron Paul's Campaign for Liberty is a beacon for convergence
Texas Congressman Ron Paul's Campaign for Liberty, is fighting in state legislatures across the country and in Congress to preserve and restore constitutional rights to all citizens, to subdue an out of control federal government, and to win back America's lost freedom. Born from Congressman Paul's 2008 presidential campaign, the organization offers unity to those who would otherwise be left to fight alone this big government run amuck.
Members of the Campaign are directly responsible for Oklahoma's resolution that "the State of Oklahoma hereby claims sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States. That this serve as Notice and Demand to the federal government, as our agent, to cease and desist, effective immediately, mandates that are beyond the scope of these constitutionally delegated powers."
Ron Paul advocates complete reinstatement of the Constitution
Ron Paul demands reinstatement of the full power of the Constitution as the overriding document outlining principles for government of the United States. He upholds that the Constitution establishes a system of shared, limited power between the three branches of the federal government, while reserving most government power for the states themselves. The primary importance of the Constitution rests in its power to limit the power of the federal government. The Constitution does not empower government and grant rights, it simply restricts government in order to safeguard pre-existing, inherent rights.
According to Congressman Paul, the principle of limited government enshrined in the Constitution, which limits government in both domestic and foreign affairs, has not changed over time. What has changed is the willingness of people to ignore that principle. The history of the 20th century reveals that the Constitution has been violated most egregiously during times of crisis such as is now being experienced. In fact, the Constitution itself was conceived in a time of great crisis, when its founders sought to escape the tyranny of big government.
He understands that most of the worst excesses of big government can be traced to a disregard for states' rights, which means a disregard for the Ninth and Tenth Amendments. Those who would dismiss the Constitution as no longer relevant are ignoring the link between the wisdom of the founders of the U.S. and the freedom and prosperity Americans still enjoy today. America is not prosperous and relatively free merely by accident. It is prosperous and free because we still retain vestiges of the Constitutional system of limited government, with its emphasis on property rights and the rule of law.
The Sovereign Society Offshore A-Letter.
Paul Supporters Lead Fight to Restore State Sovereignty in Oklahoma, Campaign for Liberty.
1000 Reasons to Vote for Ron Paul, ronpaultalks.blogspot.com.
About the authorBarbara is a school psychologist, a published author in the area of personal finance, a breast cancer survivor using "alternative" treatments, a born existentialist, and a student of nature and all things natural.
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