Tennessee nullification legislation of Obamacare and all federal gun laws is being pushed by lawmakers in the Volunteer State. On one hand lawmakers are pushing new legislation, that if passed, would gut the implementation of Obamacare. On the other hand legislation that is an expansion of the 2009 Tennessee Firearms Freedom Act was introduced yesterday, which is designed to protect Tennessee citizens from Congress’ violations of the Second and Tenth Amendment.
First, SB1680 is being sponsored by Sen. Mae Beavers (R-Mt. Juliet), along with eight co-sponsors in the Tennessee senate and a companion bill in the House by Rep. Mark Pody (R-Lebanon). The bills would prohibit the state, its officials and agencies from implementing or administering any part of the Affordable Care Act.
The bill reads in part:
“No powers, assets, employees, agents or contractors of the state, including any institution under control of the University of Tennessee or the Tennessee board of regents, or any political subdivision, municipality or other local government entity shall be used to assist in implementing the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, or any subsequent federal amendment to such act…”
According to the Tenth Amendment Center’s national communications director Mike Maharrey, the idea behind nullification by the states is to cause the federal system to collapse, in order to replace it with a decentralized system at the state level.
“The federal government has no constitutional authority to create or run a national health care system,” Maharrey said. “On top of that, why would you want them to? Why would you want a monopoly on healthcare, any more than you would want a monopoly on grocery sales? Especially a monopoly run by an entity as incompetent as the federal government.”
“We know the feds counted on the states to do the heavy lifting,” Maharrey continued. “We know the number of states refusing to create exchanges created problems. If enough states simply say, ‘No,’ this monstrosity will collapse under its own weight.”
“This action, especially in conjunction with similar steps being taken in other states, has the effect of nullifying ObamaCare,” said Rep. Pody, echoing Maharrey’s comments.
“If the feds cannot even build an appropriate website or keep their promises to consumers, they will be extremely hard-pressed to implement the other provisions for this program within our boundaries,” Pody added.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday Senator Mae Beavers also introduced legislation to stop the usurpation of the federal government in the area of the Second Amendment. SB1607, 2014 Tennessee Firearms Freedom Act, was introduced to cut the legs out from under any federal gun laws.
The legislation seeks to delete an entire section of the Tennessee code and replace it with the following:
(a) Any federal enactment or federal enforcement action relating to firearms, firearm accessories or ammunition, is void in this state.
(b) Any federal enactment or federal enforcement action impacting or infringing upon the rights of individuals or entities relative to firearms, firearm accessories or ammunition, is void in this state.
(c) No public official, employee, or agent of this state or any of its political subdivisions shall act, aid, or otherwise cooperate to impose, collect, enforce, or effectuate any fine, penalty, or other federal enactment or federal enforcement action in this state.
(d) Any enforcement of, or attempt to enforce, any federal enactment or federal enforcement action against any individual or entity in this state is an infringement of the civil rights of the individual so affected, and with respect to any such entity, such action is a violation of the rights of each individual having an ownership or membership interest in such entity.
Additionally, the bill would make it an “offense to knowingly enforce or attempt to enforce any federal enactment or to further assist any federal enforcement action.”
The person violating the legislation would be charged with a Class A misdemeanor on the first violation and a Class C felony on a second or subsequent violation.
A press release from the Tennessee Firearms Association reads:
The Firearms Freedom Act declares that the States speaking through the US Constitution expressly prohibited the federal government from having any regulatory authority over firearms inside the state of Tennessee, and as such no federal firearms law in Tennessee is valid. These prohibitions are most prominent in the wording of 2nd and 10th Amendments. The new push will mandate criminal penalties for any federal or state official attempting to enforce unconstitutional federal firearms laws within the borders of Tennessee. It is also expected to authorize citizens to pursue claims by expressly defining federal firearms laws as intentional civil rights violations.
Executive Director for the TFA John Harris said, “We are closely watching the legislature this year. Any elected official who votes against or works to obstruct the right to keep and bear arms will likely feel the pain from the voters in their district during their next election.”
“Any elected official in Tennessee who works against this bill is frankly siding with President Obama on gun control,” Harris continued. “If you don’t vote to protect your own citizens and state from Obama’s liberal gun-grabbing agenda, then you are effectively supporting his gun control scheme and the intentional destruction of the Bill of Rights.”
This would ultimately rule all federal firearm laws as null and void in Tennessee, something that should have been done when the first federal firearms laws were issued. Well done Tennessee!
Tim Brown is the Editor of Freedom Outpost.