'10th Amendment Movement' gaining steam in states
The 10th Amendment really is a simple, declarative amendment that most of the original 13 states would not have joined the union without:
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."
Federalism, or as the left likes to demonize it, "state's rights" is a first principle and a founding belief of our ancestors"
With the federal government trying to dictate to the states through the stimulus bill what programs they must adopt - even when federal money won't pay for them after a few years - several governors have put their foot down and refused to go along. And they are basing their opposition on their right granted by the 10th amendment.
Case in point; Montana is seeking to exempt guns manufactured in the state from federal regulation:
Gov. Brian Schweitzer has signed into law a bill that aims to exempt Montana-made guns from federal regulation, adding firepower to a battery of legislative efforts to assert states' rights across the nation.
"It's a gun bill, but it's another way of demonstrating the sovereignty of the state of Montana," Democrat Schweitzer said.
Since the law applies only to those guns that are made and kept in Montana, its impact is limited. The state is home to just a handful of specialty gun makers, known for recreating rifles used to settle the West, and most of their customers are out-of-state.
But supporters of the new law hope it triggers a court case testing the legal basis for federal rules governing gun sales.
"What we need here is for Montana to be able to handle Montana's business and affairs," bill sponsor Rep. Joel Boniek, a Republican and wilderness guide from Livingston, told fellow lawmakers during the bill's House debate.
The measure is one of many introduced by state lawmakers across the nation seeking to confront what some see as a federal overreach into state matters that will be extended with the national stimulus plan.
This is such a good idea on so many levels that it is surprising no state thought of doing it earlier. If New York wants to make it onerous for gun owners to exercise their constitutional right, let them. Just leave the rest of us alone.
And there are indications that the 10th Amendment Movement is only getting started:
Along with the gun bill, Montana legislators are considering a resolution that affirms the 10th Amendment principle that the federal government only has those powers that are specifically given to it by the U.S. Constitution.
"The whole goal is to awaken the people so that we can return to a properly grounded republic," Rep. Michael More, R-Gallatin Gateway and the Montana resolution's sponsor, said at a House committee hearing Wednesday.
I'm thinking this might be a direction - one of them anyway - the Tea Party Movement might want to consider going. More state control is an implied goal of the Tea Party Movement anyway and getting state politicians on record that they support the 10th Amendment would be a good way to focus the energy generated by the nationwide protests on Wednesday.
Regardless, reasserting state control where possible is a fine conservative principle that politicians should be reminded of constantly.