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Andrew Napolitano: Federal gun laws “nearly impossible” to enforce without state assistance

State noncompliance with federal gun laws would make them “nearly impossible to enforce,” according to Judge Andrew Napolitano.


On Fox and Friends in March while discussing Obama’s decision not to enforce federal drug laws in Washington and Colorado, Napolitano stated it could be repeated with any proposed federal gun control laws if a state approves legislation barring any state and local law enforcement agencies from assisting in enforcing it.

“The federal government does not have the person power and resources to enforce all federal laws on its own,” he said. “It needs the assistance of state and local police as well. They don’t have that in Washington and Colorado because marijuana is lawful there, so it might be impractical and be too costly for the feds to enforce there.”

If the federal government passes more gun control, he said, it will still need the states to help enforce it. Even if Obama decided to push for its enforcement more vigilantly than marijuana, it would still be impractical as long as the state law enforcement withhold support.

“If the federal government limits guns in a state, will it need the assistance of state police to enforce those limitations?” Napolitano asked rhetorically. “Yes, they will. And do the states have the right to refuse to enforce federal law that’s against state public policy? Yes, they do. That’s where we are on this.”