The New American
On January 16, Oklahoma State Representative Mike Ritze (pictured) re-introduced a bill stopping the enforcement of ObamaCare at the borders of the Sooner State.
In a statement announcing the newest effort to protect citizens of Oklahoma from the devastating effects of the president’s healthcare law, Dr. Ritze quoted Thomas Jefferson in support of his right to reject unconstitutional federal acts. Said Ritze:
Thomas Jefferson made it perfectly clear in the Kentucky Resolution of 1799 when he wrote; “That if those who administer the general government be permitted to transgress the limits fixed by that compact, by a total disregard to the special delegations of power therein contained, annihilation of the state governments, and the erection upon their ruins, of a general consolidated government, will be the inevitable consequence.”
Jefferson’s Kentucky Resolution plainly sets forth his understanding of the source of all federal power. Later in that document, Jefferson wrote:
That the several states who formed that instrument, being sovereign and independent, have the unquestionable right to judge of its infraction; and that a nullification, by those sovereignties, of all unauthorized acts done under colour [sic] of that instrument, is the rightful remedy.
Nullification is a concept of constitutional law that recognizes 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 Constitution.
Nullification is founded on the assertion that 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.
In the wake of the Supreme Court’s ObamaCare decision, it is encouraging to see state legislators boldly asserting their right to restrain the federal government through application of the very powerful and very constitutional principle of nullification.