What can we do against an overpowering, overreaching federal government? Term limits, Article V, run for the hills; they all have been brought to the table for possible solutions. Many are unaware that states retain the power to stop federal overreach through the U.S. Constitution’s 10th Amendment, which 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.” In other words, the people have the ultimate say and can use nullification by state legislatures to rein in the government! Nullification is the tool to place the people back in control!
Similarly, the federal government has the power to nullify laws and regulations it has passed. For instance, there have been various bills that President Trump has signed that nullify federal regulations. He recently signed House Joint Resolution 69, House Joint Resolution 83, and Senate Joint Resolution 34.
The House Joint Resolution 69
nullifies a previous Obama bill that restricted the use of particular wildlife hunting methods on National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska. The legality of different practices was debated with the state of Alaska and the U.S. government. Digging deeper, the issue all along was federal control vs. state control of wildlife management. Many Alaskans felt that the federal restrictions were unwarranted and intrusive. Now, it is up to Alaska to make those decisions itself without this federal overreach.
Similarly, House Joint Resolution 83
nullified a Department of Labor’s rule. A White House statement titled it as “Clarification of Employer’s Continuing Obligation to Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness.” Trump claims it will bring back more American jobs. Echoing his campaign promise to put America First he stated,
In eliminating this rule, I am continuing to keep my promise to the American people to get rid of wasteful regulations that do nothing -- absolutely nothing -- but slow down the economy, hamstring companies, push jobs to other countries -- which is happening all over, although I must tell you, we’ve stopped it. You’ve seen all the factories, all the plants that are moving back.
Another example is S.J. Res. 34
, which “nullifies the Federal Communications Commission’s rule on privacy of customers of broadband and other telecommunications services.” Through this nullification, broadband providers are now are able to function through the free market.
What about the states? Successful nullification acts have been seen across America. Follow along on The Tenth Amendment Center
Americans need to know that nullification is an option. Restoring America back to its constitutional roots through limited government isn’t going to happen overnight. But knowing the right solutions and working towards them with a strategized approach can bring back glimpses of hope. Nullification
does work and should be used!