States Join the Fight to Nullify Indefinite Detention Under NDAA

By:  Joe Wolverton, II, J.D.
States Join the Fight to Nullify Indefinite Detention Under NDAA

Several states are enlisting in the fight to deny the federal government the power to indefinitely detain American citizens under provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013 (NDAA).

President Barack Obama signed the latest National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) into law on January 2, renewing the power to apprehend and detain Americans indefinitely granted in the previous year’s version.

In order to protect their citizens from being grabbed and imprisoned under the provisions of the NDAA, many state lawmakers are standing up to the federal government, proposing resolutions nullifying this unconstitutional power at the state borders.

Nullification is a concept of constitutional law recognizing the right of each state to nullify, or invalidate, any federal measure that exceeds the few and defined powers allowed the federal government as enumerated in the U.S. Constitution.

Nullification exists as a right of the states because the sovereign states formed the union, and as creators of the compact, they hold ultimate authority as to the limits of the power of the central government to enact laws that are applicable to the states and the citizens thereof.

As President Obama continues accumulating all legislative, executive, and judicial power, the need for nullification is urgent, and liberty-minded citizens are encouraged to see state legislators boldly asserting their right to restrain the federal government through application of that very powerful and very constitutional principle.

The House of Representatives of Washington, for example, is considering the "Washington State Preservation of Liberty Act." Introduced earlier this month, this bill “condemns and criminalizes” the use of the indefinite detention provision of the NDAA.

H.B. 1581 enjoys bipartisan support. The bill’s primary sponsor is state Representative Sharon Tomiko Santos (D), who is joined by at least eight other Democrats and 12 Republicans.

The state senate in the the Evergreeen State is considering a companion bill, co-sponsored by Democrats Bob Hosegawa and Maralyn Chase.

Both measures intend to prevent the president from sending the military to arrest and detain Washingtonians, under the authority of Section 1021 of the Fiscal Year 2012 NDAA.

Section 4 of H.B. 1581 prohibits:

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