States Distancing Themselves From The Federal Government

States Distancing Themselves From The Federal Government
Over 40 States Declare State Sovereignty
A Commentary by J. D. Longstreet

NINTH AMENDMENT to the US Constitution: The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.TENTH AMENDMENT to the US Constitution: 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.

As I have observed over the past few months the “State Sovereignty Movement” continues to sweep the nation with well over three-quarters of the fifty states taking action, through their respective state legislatures, re-establishing their “sovereignty”.

It is being reported that there are over 40 states with state sovereignty declarations as of this writing. If true, that is heartening. There is no doubt the states have been relegated to second-class citizenship in the US. That is just WRONG and must be corrected!


WYOMING is the newest constitutionally sovereign state. The bill was signed into law on March 8th, 2010. Utah did the same on the 25th of February 2010. The debate continues in my home state of South Carolina, but my guess is it will pass the state legislature and be signed into law by the “Sandlappers” very soon now.

Here in North Carolina, House Bill H849 “supporting the state’s right to claim sovereignty over certain powers under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States” has been filed.

Here’s the full text:

Whereas, the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads as follows: “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;” and

Whereas, the Tenth Amendment defines the total scope of federal power as being that specifically granted by the Constitution of the United States and no more; and

Whereas, the scope of power defined by the Tenth Amendment means that the federal government was created by the states specifically to be an agent of the states; and

Whereas, today, in 2009, the states are demonstrably treated as agents of the federal government; and

Whereas, many federal mandates are directly in violation of the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States; and

Whereas, Section 4 of Article IV of the Constitution of the United States says, “The United States shall guarantee to every state in this union a republican form of government,” and the Ninth Amendment states that “The enumeration in the constitution of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people;” and

Whereas, the United States Supreme Court ruled in New York v. United States, 112 S. Ct. 2408 (1992), that Congress may not simply commandeer the legislative and regulatory processes of the states; and

Whereas, a number of proposals from previous administrations and some now pending from the present administration and from Congress may further violate the Constitution of the United States; Now, therefore,

Be it resolved by the House of Representatives:

SECTION 1. The North Carolina House of Representatives supports the State’s right to claim sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government or reserved to the people by the Constitution of the United States.

SECTION 2. The North Carolina House of Representatives urges the federal government, as the agent of the State, to cease and desist, effective immediately, mandates that are beyond the scope of any constitutionally delegated powers.

SECTION 3. The North Carolina House of Representatives further urges that compulsory federal legislation which 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.

SECTION 4. The Principal Clerk shall transmit a certified copy of this resolution to the President of the United States, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, and each member of the North Carolina Congressional Delegation.

SECTION 5. This resolution is effective upon adoption.

Read more on North Carolina’s efforts to re-establish its sovereignty HERE.

I took a look in my crystal ball and, for the life of me; I could see no indication of the effect the sovereignty movement will have on future relations between the states and their “agent”… the federal government. Only time will tell. However, I must tell you, it does this old southern boy’s heart good to see “State’s Rights” again brought to the fore in the United States.

James Madison, The Founder we refer to as “The Father of the Constitution,” wrote the following: “To preserve the Republic, it is in the hands of the people. We have staked the whole future of American civilization not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all of our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for self-government; upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments"

As with all Americans we “Southerners” get a lot of things wrong. But we have been right on the issue of “State’s Rights” all along. See, southerners had a bit more than just a signature invested in the creation of the Constitution, itself. There was never any doubt, in our minds, about who “the greater” and who “the lesser” was/is in this association of states and federal government. I must tell you, I am more than a little pleased to find the names of several northern and western states, and even northeastern states, included in the list of the names of the states involved in the State Sovereignty Movement.

Washington would do well to take notice, serious notice, of this movement. The Congress and the President may have forgotten, but it is “the boss” filing this complaint. It is very easy to sit in Washington and spend North Carolina’s money, or the money of the folks from Texas or Oklahoma. But, believe me when I tell you that we have been paying attention and we do not like having our state’s treasuries looted by a heavy-handed federal government.

The current Congress would also do well to read up on the “Ordinance of Nullification” passed by my home state of South Carolina in 1828. You can read it for yourself HERE. Suffice it to say State Sovereignty is NOT a NEW issue in this country. It appears we will have to visit it -- yet again.

J. D. Longstreet


  1. While it is very important to raise public awareness of 10th Amendment protected state sovereignty in the fight against unconstitutional Obama socialism, I think that people also need to understand the following. People need to also be aware of the anti-state sovereignty 16th and 17th Amendments.

    More specifically, as evidenced by Article I, Section 3, Clause 1, the Founders had established the federal Senate to be the voice of the constitutionally powerful state legislatures in the Constitutionally humbled federal government. And the constitutionally powerful states are important where federal taxes versus state taxes are concerned. This is evidenced by the following case precedent established by Chief Justice Marshall, but now wrongly ignored by both federal and state lawmakers. Justice Marshall wrote that the federal government cannot lay taxes in the name of state power issues.

    "Congress is not empowered to tax for those purposes which are within the exclusive province of the States." --Chief Justice Marshall, GIBBONS V. OGDEN, 1824.

    With this in mind, consider that not only is Obamacare, for example, constitutionally unauthorized as evidenced by the federal Constitution’s silence on public healthcare, but Justice Marshall’s official words appropriately indicate that neither does Congress have the power to lay taxes to fund Obamacare.

    So ideally, when constitutionally clueless FDR cried for Congress to make constitutionally unauthorized tax and spending legislation in the 1930s and 40s, legislation which not only usurped state powers but also stole hard-earned citizen dollars that should never have left the states, federal senators should have stood up and stopped Congress from giving FDR what he wanted.

    So why didn't federal senators stop Congress from approving legislation which usurped state powers and stole associated taxes? After all, as previously mentioned, the Founders had established the federal Senate to protect state interests.

    To begin with, mostly rural US citizens seem to have forgotten about state sovereignty before 1913. This was the year that state legislatures unthinkingly ratified the ill-conceived, anti-state sovereignty 16th and 17th Amendments.

    And I surmise that the reason that state legislatures ratified these amendments is this. Not only had the people evidently forgotten about state sovereignty since the Civil War, but the lawmakers that they were electing to their state legislatures must have been as state sovereignty-impaired as the voters were.

    Continued in next post (I hope)...

  2. As a side note, consider that the Pledge of Allegiance, written in 1892 by a Christian Socialist, is arguably pro-big federal government propaganda. This is evidenced by the words, “one Nation,” and “indivisible” in the Pledge. Indeed, given such wording, the Pledge has been arguably diluting the idea of state sovereignty in the minds of school children for many generations.

    Getting back to the insane 16th and 17th Amendments, not only must voters have filled state legislatures with constitutionally inept lawmakers by 1913, but voters did an “encore performance” by using their new 17th A. power to likewise fill federal Senate seats with lawmakers who were evidently as constitutionally-impaired as the clowns that they had been sending to the state legislatures.

    So by the time that FDR demanded his social spending programs from Congress, instead of getting the resounding “hell no” that he deserved from a state sovereignty-saavy Senate that understood that its job was to protect state sovereignty, constitutionally inept federal senators unthinkingly told FDR, “Anything you want FDR,” just as state legislators had unthinkingly ratified the 16th and 17th Amendments decades earlier.

    And since FDR was in office long enough to nominate eight pro-big federal government justices by the early 40s, all constitutional firewalls to protect state sovereignty from a corrupt, power-hungry federal government had ultimately failed.

    Again, the consequence of the 16th and 17th Amendments is that state lawmakers stupidly made it difficult for themselves to fight constitutionally unauthorized federal taxes laid by corrupt a Congress that the state legislatures no longer had a voice in.

    Are we having fun yet?

    What a mess! :^(

    The bottom line is that Constitution-defending patriots have a big mess to clean up in both the federal and state legislatues in this year’s midterm elections.

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