States Reclaiming Sovereignty?
Lawmakers in 20 states move to reclaim
Obama's $1 trillion deficit-spending 'stimulus plan' seen as last straw
Posted: February 06, 2009 By Jerome R. Corsi WorldNetDaily
NEW YORK – As the Obama administration attempts to push through Congress a
nearly $1 trillion deficit spending plan that is weighted heavily toward
advancing typically Democratic-supported social welfare programs, a rebellion
against the growing dominance of federal control is beginning to spread at the
So far, eight states have introduced resolutions declaring state sovereignty
under the Ninth and Tenth Amendment to the Constitution, including
Analysts expect that in addition, another 20 states
may see similar
measures introduced this year, including Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas,
California, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Nevada, Maine and
"What we are trying to do is to get the U.S. Congress out of the state's
Oklahoma Republican state Sen. Randy Brogdon told WND.
"Congress is completely out of line spending trillions of dollars over the last
10 years putting the nation into a debt crisis like we've never seen before,"
Brogdon said, arguing that the Obama stimulus plan is the last straw taxing
state patience in the brewing sovereignty dispute.
"This particular 111th Congress is the biggest bunch of over-reachers and
underachievers we've ever had in Congress," he said.
"A sixth-grader should realize you can't borrow money to pay off your debt, and
that is the Obama administration's answer for a stimulus package," he added.
The Ninth Amendment reads, "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain
rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the
The Tenth Amendment specifically provides, "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."
Brogdon, the lead sponsor of the Oklahoma state senate version of the
sovereignty bill, has been a strong opponent of extending the plan to build a
four-football-fields-wide Trans-Texas Corridor parallel to Interstate-35 to
Rollback federal authority
The various sovereignty measures moving through state legislatures are designed
to reassert state authority through a rollback of federal authority under the
powers enumerated in the Constitution, with the states assuming the governance
of the non-enumerated powers, as required by the Tenth Amendment.
The state sovereignty measures, aimed largely at the perceived fiscal
irresponsibility of Congress in the administrations of Bill Clinton and George
W. Bush, have gained momentum with the $1 trillion deficit-spending economic
stimulus package the Obama administration is currently pushing through Congress.
Particularly disturbing to many state legislators are the increasing number of
"unfunded mandates" that have proliferated in social welfare programs, such as
Medicare and Medicaid, in which bills passed by Congress dictate policy to the
states without providing funding.
In addition, the various state resolutions include discussion of a wide range of
policy areas, including the regulation of firearms sales (Montana) and the
demand to issue drivers licenses with technology to embed personal information
under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative and the Real ID Act (Michigan).
Hawaii's measure calls for a new state constitutional convention to return
self-governance, a complaint that traces back to the days it was a U.S.
territory, prior to achieving statehood in 1959.
"We are trying to send a message to the federal government that the states are
trying to reclaim their sovereignty,"
Republican Rep. Matt Shea, the lead sponsor of Washington's sovereignty
resolution told WND.
"State sovereignty has been eroded in so many areas, it's hard to know where to
start," he said. "There are a ton of federal mandates imposed on states, for
instance, on education spending and welfare spending."
Shea said the Obama administration's economic stimulus package moving through
Congress is a "perfect example."
"In the state of Washington, we have increased state spending 33 percent in the
last three years and hired 6,000 new state employees, often using federal
mandates as an excuse to grow state government," he said. "We need to return
government back down to the people, to keep government as close to the local
people as possible."
Shea is a private attorney who serves with the Alliance Defense Fund, a
nationwide network of about 1,000 attorneys who work pro-bono. As a counter to
the ACLU, the alliance seeks to protect and defend religious liberty, the
sanctity of life and traditional family values.
Republican state Rep. Judy Burges, the primary sponsor of the sovereignty
resolution in the Arizona House, told WND the federal government "has been
trouncing on our constitutional rights."
"The real turning point for me was the Real ID act, which involved both a
violation of the Fourth Amendments rights against the illegal searches and
seizures and the Tenth Amendment," she said.
Burges told WND she is concerned that the overreaching of federal powers could
lead to new legislation aimed at confiscating weapons from citizens or encoding
"The Real ID Act was so broadly written that we are afraid that it involves the
potential for "mission-creep," that could easily involve confiscation of
firearms and violations of the Second Amendment," she said.
Burges said she has been surprised at the number of e-mails she has received in
support of the sovereignty measure.
"We are a sovereign state in Arizona, not a branch of the federal government,
and we need to be treated as such, she insisted.