States’ Rights Update: Alaska, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Montana



On April 6, 2009, the Alaska House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed House Joint Resolution 27 [HJR27] [status page] which “claims sovereignty for the state under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States”

The final vote was 37-0, with 3 not voting. Here’s the tally. (h/t Tom Mortensen)


Also from

On April 1, 2009, the Georgia State Senate passed Resolution 632 (SR632) [status page] “Affirming states’ rights based on Jeffersonian principles.”  The vote was a resounding 43-1, with 12 not voting or excused. Here’s the tally.  (h/t Vinny Patel)



BOISE, Idaho (AP) – The Senate used a voice vote to pass a resolution telling the federal government to respect Idaho’s sovereignty.

Sen. Monty Pearce, a Payette Republican, on Tuesday compared laws protecting states’ rights to rules that govern sporting events, then accused Congress of ignoring those when it passes bills mandating states to do certain things under threat of lost funding or other punishment. …

The bill cleared the House 51-17 last month.

Both Idaho’s HJM004 (status page) on State sovereignty and HJM003 (status page) “urging that the Senate and House of Representatives of the United State in Congress and to the Idaho congressional delegation to cease and desist attempting to enact federal legislation impinging on the individual right to keep and bear arms” have passed both chambers.


From HoosiersForFairTaxation:

I just spoke with Senator Walker. SR 42 [status page] was heard in hearing in the Committee on Commerce and Public Policy & Interstate Cooperation this afternoon.

Senator Walker reports the hearing was “…the most fun I’ve had in the 2 1/2 years I’ve had this job.” 

Needless to say, SR 42 passed in committee.

The vote was 8 to 0, with 3 absent. All four Democrats present voted AYE! As well, three asked to be added as coauthors no less!! Those Senators being Senators Deig, Skinner and Arnold. 

Senator Walker reports that he is up to 19 co-authors now, including three Committee Chairs – Senators Paul, Steele and Kruse, and Senate President pro-tem Long.



In the wake of the easy passage through the Montana legislature of Montana House Bill 246, Governor Brian Schweitzer’s signature is all that is needed to set up a potentially explosive battle between state sovereignty on the one hand, and smothering, centralized federal power on the other. …

For anyone who believes the federal government can legitimately exercise only the powers explicitly enumerated by the Constitution as being within its purview (in other words, anyone who actually reads the Constitution, and is honest about what it says), there is no debate–the federal government has zero power to regulate arms produced in Montana, and that are kept within the state (rather than sold in interstate commerce, and thus made subject to federal regulation under the commerce clause).

Whether or not Governor Schweitzer will sign the bill is open to question.  Although considered a reliably “pro-gun” Democrat, I cannot help but raise an eyebrow over his enthusiastic support of Obama’s candicacy, and defense of Obama’s position on private gun ownership:

As for Obama, Schweitzer said, “He ain’t going to take your gun away. He ain’t ever going to take your gun away.”

Unless, of course, your gun is an “assault weapon,” was purchased via the “gun show loophole,” or is not “child-proof.”

A current listing of State-based initiatives can be found here.


2 thoughts on “States’ Rights Update: Alaska, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Montana”

  1. As a citizen of Georgia I believe the Georgia version is trash. It attempts to nullify the U.S. Constitution. I do not want that.

    I want something that swings power back from the federal government to the state.

    The essence of the problem is that the 10th Amendment must compete with the commerce clause. Something needs to be done to define the depths that the commerce clause can reach into a state.

    While some cases before the USC started setting boundries marking congressional power under the commerce clause with US v Lopez (1995) and US v Morrison (2000) a clear statement with acceptable action from the GA government would help.

  2. Dear Sir:
    I have been so disturbed that there has not been more states re-affirming there states rights. We are losing more freedom due to the Federal Government reaching beyond the limits of its’ power and foistering illegal mandates upon the states. Just today it appears that the President is willing to give away our sovreignty to a global government.
    Millions of our brave patriots have given their lives in defense of this country and its’ Constitution. May they not have died in vain. They would have if our sovreinty is lost. It is unthinkable to envision this prospect!!
    In less than 3 months, Mr Obama has pushed to the limit many idess that go far beyond the limitations of our Constitution.
    If we can get more states to reaffirm their rights of sovreignty, if the President continues his present course, the states can bring suit to oust the present Federal Government with a 2/3 vote of the states in favor of sovreignty. May God bless us.

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