In response to increasing federal overreach and Joe Biden’s outrageous insistence on governing by fiat like a dictator, state nullification measures are starting to pick up steam.
One of these is a new bill proposed in North Dakota that would allow the state to ignore any of Joe Biden’s executive orders if it judges any of them to be unconstitutional.
North Dakota Nullification
The new bill, called House Bill 1164 and submitted by North Dakota State Representative Tom Kading, says, in part:
“The legislative management may review any executive order signed by the president of the United States which has not been affirmed by a vote of the Congress of the United States and signed into law as proscribed by the Constitution… and recommend… that the executive order be further reviewed…. [T]he attorney general shall review the executive order to determine [its] constitutionality and whether the state should seek an exemption… or seek to have the order declared… unconstitutional…”
The bill proceeds to go into specifics on exactly the kinds of bills that it will nullify, such as those which touch on gun rights, North Dakota’s agriculture, environmental orders, or anything related to “pandemics or other health emergencies.”
South Dakota Joins in on the Fun as Well
South Dakota Republican State Representative Sebastian Ertelt has introduced a similar bill in his own state, called HB 1282. This bill appears to be even more radical than the North Dakota law, as it aims to create a committee that will review all federal legislation — not just executive orders — for its constitutionality.
These bills are almost sure to be challenged on constitutional grounds. It will be alleged that they violate the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause. However, regardless of any such challenge, it is clear that the Founders themselves were vehemently in favor of state nullification.
When Thomas Jefferson and James Madison wrote the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions, they introduced the idea of state nullification on the grounds that the Supreme Court could not always be trusted to strike down unconstitutional laws. Even though the Constitution enshrines separation of powers between the federal government’s different branches, it is still possible for those branches to collude together to oppress the states.