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Thursday, January 16, 2014

But What If I Don't Like The Law Of The Land?

These guys are so cute:

“The best that we have now is the idea of nullification. But the states right now do not have a provision in the Constitution that allows them to countermand laws,” Kacprowicz said. But he’s crafted a proposal that would change all that. “With this provision, in the Sovereignty and States Rights Amendment, they can countermand it, and they can disallow it when 30 states say ‘let’s stop.’ ”

Naturally, Kacprowicz had a red meat example close at hand. “Obamacare right now has at least 26 states who have already filed lawsuits against the government for imposing on them the tax and the imposition of Obamacare on the states,” he continued. “That’s already going forward. So you have that right there. We need four more states and Obamacare is history. And so that’s the kind of power that this has in this sovereignty amendment.”

What's interesting to me is that the Father of the Constitution really didn't trust the States much, and as he told George Washington on April 16, 1787, he hoped to created a Federal government that was a:

disinterested & dispassionate umpire in disputes between different passions & interests in the State. The majority who alone have the right of decision, have frequently an interest real or supposed in abusing it.

So in his Virginia Plan, first submitted at Philadelphia on May 29, 1787, he suggested:

that the national Legislature ought to be empowered to enjoy the legislative rights vested in Congress by the confederation — and moreover to legislate in all cases to which the separate States are incompetent: or in which the harmony of the United States may be interrupted by the exercise of individual legislation. to negative all laws passed by the several States contravening, in the opinion of the national Legislature, the articles of union, or any treaties subsisting under the authority of the union.

Obviously that's not the regime we have today, but I thought it worth mentioning all the same.

The curious thing is we already have a way for a significant group of states to get together and override legislation they don't like.  The opposition can win election to Federal office with enough force to repeal or modify statutes, and, you know, do what Kacprowicz is proposing and amend the Constitution.

ntodd

January 16, 2014 in Constitution, Schmonstitution | Permalink

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