6 votes

Nullification is Constitutional

The near-showdown in Texas did not break any new ground in the nullification debate. The Texas House of Representatives passed a law that made the touching of genitals or breasts by TSA personnel illegal and punishable by fines and imprisonment. The federal government responded by citing the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution, together with a threat to cancel all air travel to and from Texas if the law were passed by the Senate and signed by the governor. The Texas Senate backed down. The crisis was averted – for the moment.

For most, attention was probably focused on the threat to close down air travel. Indeed, this would have been a huge crisis, with economic ramifications far beyond Texas. However, the more important issue here is the constitutional one. The federal government states as if it were fact that under the Supremacy Clause “Texas has no authority to regulate federal agents and employees in the performance of their federal duties or to pass a statute that conflicts with federal law.” Does the Supremacy Clause really say this? Let’s take a look. It says,

“This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.”

For those not familiar with the Constitution, that’s it. There are no further provisions explaining what is meant. There is no list of definitions of the various words, as one might expect to find in a contract today. Whatever “supremacy” the federal government claims to have must be found in this one sentence.

Perhaps a fast read might lead one to believe that the last section of this clause settles the question definitively. It says that the judges in every state shall be bound be federal laws “any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.” End of debate, right? The Texas law conflicts with the federal law, so the federal law trumps it. This is what the federal government would like you to accept - without question.

There is only one problem for the Feds. Their interpretation of the “Supremacy Clause” is based completely on the last section of this one-sentence provision and entirely ignores the first. One would think that if they were going to cite this clause, then reading the entire sentence would be a reasonable expectation.

So what exactly is “the Supreme Law of the Land?” Any law passed by the federal government? That’s not what the Supremacy Clause says. It says that “This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof” shall be the supreme law of the land.

Note the word “and.” There are two separate and distinct things cited as the supreme law of the land. First, “this Constitution.” That means that the terms and conditions of the Constitution itself, together with any amendments made to it, are the supreme law of the land. Therefore, anyone violating any part of the Constitution, including its amendments, would be violating the supreme law of the land.

Next, take note of the description of the federal laws which shall possess this supremacy. They must be “pursuant to” the Constitution itself. This means that the federal law in question must have as its basis a power granted to the federal legislators. The Constitution, for the most part, grants powers rather than makes specific laws. It tells the federal government which type of laws it may pass. It may not pass any laws for which it has not been granted the necessary power to do so. To eliminate any possible confusion on this point, the framers added the Tenth Amendment. It 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.”

Many well-meaning citizens and not-so-well-meaning federal legislators think about the Constitution in a backwards manner. They assume that unless the Constitution forbids the federal government from exercising a particular power, then the federal government may exercise that power. Exactly the opposite is true. The starting point of ones reasoning should be that the federal government may pass no laws whatsoever. Then, Article 1 Section 8 provides the sole exceptions to that general rule. Only laws which exercise powers specifically delegated in that list may be passed.

However, the argument against the TSA does not rely upon employing this reasoning, because the activities of the TSA not only constitute powers not delegated to the federal government, but powers forbidden to the federal government by the Constitution itself. The Fourth Amendment states,

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

One could argue that the mere presence of the word “unreasonable” is enough to prohibit the touching of genital areas during a search. If that is not unreasonable, then what is? Dissection? However, the last part of this amendment makes any debate about what is reasonable unnecessary. It says that in order for the government to conduct a search of anyone’s person, house, papers, or effects, there must be a warrant “supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

This means that the government may not search everyone who comes through an airport. In order for them to search anyone at all, there must be probable cause that the person has already committed a crime. Does this mean probable cause in the opinion of the person conducting the search? No. An impartial judge must determine that there is probable cause and issue a written order (a search warrant) confirming that probable cause and naming the specific person to be searched and the specific items that the search will be conducted to find. Only then may an officer of the federal government search an air traveler.

Therefore, the laws authorizing the TSA to search everyone who wishes to board an airplane are in direct conflict with a specific provision of the Constitution. In other words, they violate the Supreme Law of the Land.

Now, when someone breaks a law, they are subject to arrest and prosecution. That raises the question: Who has the power to arrest and prosecute federal legislators or officers who pass and enforce a federal law that violates the Supreme Law of the Land? That power is not delegated to Congress nor the Executive. The Judiciary is only empowered to hear cases arising “under the Constitution,” and to adjudicate controversies regarding “the Laws of the United States.” No one is disputing that the TSA personnel are following the federal law – it is the law itself that is disputed.

Contrary to popular belief, there is nothing in Article 3 of the Constitution that empowers the federal judiciary to decide whether or not a law is “constitutional.” They merely usurped that power early on, to the repeated and valid objections of anyone with an honest concern for liberty, beginning with Thomas Jefferson and James Madison - the latter being the man who actually drafted the Constitution in the first place! Both of these men and many others afterwards have recognized the clear absurdity of allowing any party to be a judge in its own case. That is one of the fundamental reasons cited for man leaving the state of nature and forming government in the first place.

The constitution provides clear direction on where power lies if it is not expressly delegated to the federal government – with the States or the people. The power to arrest and prosecute those who pass and carry out laws in violation of the Superme Law of the Land is not delegated to the federal government. Therefore it must reside in the States or the people. Nullification is constitutional. Let justice be done.

For more information on the history of state nullification of unconstitutional federal laws, get Tom Woods’ book, Nullification: How to Resist Federal Tyranny in the 21st Century here!

Find dates in your area for the Nullify Now! Tour featuring Tom Woods here!

Check out Tom Mullen’s book, A Return to Common Sense: Reawakening Liberty in the Inhabitants of America. Right Here!

© Thomas Mullen 2011




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If nullification is unConstitutional, so is the Constitution

The Constitution was a blatant act of nullification of the Articles of Confederation which asserted a Perpetual Union.

There was no Tenth Amendment to the Articles that reserved all unenumerated powers for the States, such as nullification or secession.

If nullification is not Constitutional then the Constitution is and must be itself illegitimate.

Ether nullification is legitimate, or there is nothing to nullify in the first place.

Great Article, Sadly The Bill of Rights Does NOT Apply To

U.S. citizens. Only Citizens of the United States, meaning State Citizens.
That is not what you signed up for if you have a Social Security Card. That is an entirely different contract. Under the Social Security Contract (the new deal) you must first declare yourself legally dead and pledge your life's labor to the U.S. Government Corporation in exchange for them taking care of you.
They take care of you all right!
U.S. citizens have no lawful rights of any kind. They are wards of the State, property.

In the old days when your name was written like this JOHN P. DOE it meant you were a convicted felon, a ward of the State.

Bad news, you have already surrendered all of your rights without a trial. Look at the name on your prison I.D. (drivers license). You are already condemned State Property.

Sorry. But you are in HELL. You are legally dead already. You are a convicted felon. You are State property. You have no "private parts". Those all belong to the State.

The Oracle

I disagree.

I cannot be legally forced to adhere to a contract signed under duress, or by restrictions that I was not informed of at signing.

I have never and would never agree to be bound in such a way, and have never been advised of a binding contract between myself and the federal or state government.

Further, my God given rights cannot be signed away willingly any more than they can be taken away by force. I am as free as I want to be, even though exercising that freedom may incite violence from those who claim authority over me. I can be beaten, kidnapped, caged, or murdered, but at no point will I or can I give up my rights, for they came from God, and to God they still belong.

True

However the other guys don't see it that way. When your mother signed you up for social security she declared you legally dead and surrendered all your rights to the State in exchange for the State "taking care of you".
Unless you have some way of undoing that mistake you are pretty much screwed.
I have to tell you that I am an experienced party in this fight.
I have been kidnapped multiple times, had my private property stolen in broad daylight (truck), had my house burglarized and secretly searched by police, been brutalized, drugged, and tortured by these thugs.

They call me Jesus or The King and laugh like the devils they are. Are you ready to be TORTURED, stripped naked, beaten, maced, etc.? Are you prepared to be locked away in a mental institution and have your brain chemically liquified? Because that is what they will do to you if you tell them all this nonsense about your God given rights.
You are property of The British Crown in their universe, HELL on Earth.

I agree completely, our rights are God given, but our parents sold us into bondage to the international bankers and we are in a lot of trouble. We are not a free people, we are slaves, British Subjects, military officers, legally dead.

If you feel so strongly about this will you sign my commercial lien against them for any one of the horrors they have inflicted on me. I need 24 Americans who will stand up and say no more.

Are you willing to back up your claim to be a free man by standing beside another who wants only his God given rights?

The Oracle

Nice article, Tom.

What a shame that Texas should roll over at the threats. But then, Texas does it a thousand other ways, as do all the other states. So the battered spouse dared to complain a bit before cowering again in submission.

After studying the "total war" that began in 1861 and didn't end until the late 1870s, I am wholly convinced, however, that any state opposing the federal government to any appreciable extent will be utterly ruined by WAR, economic sabotage, hunger, and genocide. Don't tell the Americans, but this happened once before and those states who were once the richest are now amongst the poorest, even over a century later. This "nation" was re-invented in the Lincoln era and has successfully transformed the public perception of Lincoln as a tyrant to that of a demigod next only to Jesus himself.

Hardly anyone will believe it, but if a state should say "this far and no further", there would surely be war in short order.

To put it bluntly and unapologetically, America simply doesn't care about the rule of law. We are too devoid of character for such things; it is now much too high-minded for us. Not only are we too dull to insist that our own laws be followed, we are too dull to perceive a problem with this. We lack the sense to be ashamed.

So here's to the slavery we all "enjoy". It does, after all, come with perks like Oprah, McDonalds, entitlements, and a state-of-the-art military that provides us with loads of entertainment (until the day that it turns its guns inward, in which case no one will be as amused by the carnage as we are at present.) To us, war is still glorious and praiseworthy.

This, of course, is because we are pompous idiots who don't even perceive our own double standards. Our dullness, however, is certainly an engineered dullness, and no mere accident. It is not even from neglect. It is the result of a deliberate campaign that began in the 1800s under the tyranny of names we would still recognize to this day.

But America does not care about all this because Idol still comes on and Wendy's is still open and those government checks still keep coming.

What a shame to have a constitutional republic in name only. But we are far from the first to do it. Just as millions of dysfunctional families continue to feign a meaningful existence, so America carries on as if somehow there is something left to brag about when even the people themselves are corrupt and dull as a brick.

If we cannot exercise that most-human of faculties---self correction---then are we not to be pitied by all?

Our fundamental problem is a moral one; we do not embrace rationality, truth, and self correction as fundamental paradigms. We are a corrupt people to the core.

With that in view, the number of stars on the flag or of sections in the Constitution is pure trivia.

I could go on and on and on.

What a sad state, ours.

How sadly ironic that such excitement stems from the entry of this candidate or that one, when nothing short of a 30-state "come to Jesus" meeting with the Feds could have any possible chance of success in forming this mess. To reform the US to its own Constitution is practically as radical an act as to install some other constitution altogether. An entire change of guard would be necessary. Such a thing will surely never happen without bloodshed. There is simply too much to be lost by the establishment.

This ALL happened the last time.

It is unfashionable, however, to believe that it could ever happen again.

Jack

Texas rolled over? Buncha

Texas rolled over? Buncha yellow girlie men!

Unless the legislature of

Unless the legislature of Texas votes and cedes jurisdiction over the airport to the federal government, you can damn well bet they can lock TSA agents in jail, because Texas has original jurisdiction over those airports.

Interstate commerce jurisdiction does not begin until that plane leaves the ground, and maybe not even until that plane crosses the borders of Texas.