INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Jan. 14, 2016) – An Indiana bill would prohibit state cooperation with the enforcement all future federal gun control laws, rendering them virtually toothless within the state.
Rep. Chris Judy (R-Dist. 83) introduced House Bill 1293 (HB1293) on Jan. 12. The legislation would prohibit state agencies or political subdivisions, along with their employees, from participating in any way in the enforcement of “a federal act, law, order, rule or, regulation enacted or promulgated after January 1, 2016, regarding personal firearms, firearm accessory, or ammunition.”
The bill would also prohibit the use of any assets, state funds or funds allocated by the state to a political subdivision for the enforcement of such gun laws.
The law would allow cooperation with federal enforcement under a court order.
Any state agent or employee violating the statute would be subject to criminal penalties under the law.
This would effectively withdraw all state cooperation from the implementation or enforcement of future federal gun laws.
HB1293 does not require any determination of constitutionality. It doesn’t attempt to block federal enforcement of its own laws, but instead simply directs all state agencies to simply stand down.
Based on James Madison’s advice for states and individuals in Federalist #46, a “refusal to cooperate with officers of the Union” represents an extremely effectively method to bring down federal gun control measures because most enforcement actions rely on help, support and leadership from the states.
Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano agreed. In a televised discussion on the issue, he noted that a single state taking this step would make federal gun laws “nearly impossible” to enforce.
The federal government relies heavily on state cooperation to implement and enforce almost all of its laws, regulations and acts – including gun laws. By simply withdrawing this necessary cooperation, states can block many federal actions. As noted by the National Governor’s Association during the partial government shutdown of 2013, “states are partners with the federal government on most federal programs.”
“Partnerships don’t work too well when half the team quits,” said Michael Boldin of the Tenth Amendment Center. “By withdrawing all resources and participation in federal gun control schemes, the states can effectively bring them down.”
HB1293 rests on a well-established legal principle known as the anti-commandeering doctrine. Simply put, the federal government cannot force states to help implement or enforce any federal act or program. The anti-commandeering doctrine is based primarily on four Supreme Court cases dating back to 1842. Printz v. US serves as the cornerstone.
“We held in New York that Congress cannot compel the States to enact or enforce a federal regulatory program. Today we hold that Congress cannot circumvent that prohibition by conscripting the States’ officers directly. The Federal Government may neither issue directives requiring the States to address particular problems, nor command the States’ officers, or those of their political subdivisions, to administer or enforce a federal regulatory program. It matters not whether policy making is involved, and no case by case weighing of the burdens or benefits is necessary; such commands are fundamentally incompatible with our constitutional system of dual sovereignty.”
HB1293 was referred to the House Committee on Public Policy where it will need to pass by a majority vote before moving on to the full House for consideration.
TAKE ACTION IN SUPPORT
In Indiana, follow all the steps to support this bill at THIS LINK
All other states, contact your state legislator and encourage them to introduce similar legislation to stop federal gun control at this link.