South Dakota Republicans aren’t the only gun nuts who’ve been pushing bills to nullify federal laws regulating firearms. Republican legislators across the country are ignoring the Constitution and betraying the Union by arguing that local cops should have more authority than the United States Constitution:
Federal nullification bills have been introduced in more than a dozen other states, including Alabama, Arkansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Wyoming, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, West Virginia and Iowa. In Texas, the governor has called for the state to become a Second Amendment sanctuary.
In Arizona, a Senate proposal that passed the chamber on Wednesday would allow officers to be sued for enforcing federal gun restrictions that the state considers violations of the Second Amendment. They potentially could face criminal charges [Lindsay Whitehurst, “GOP State Lawmakers Seek to Nullify Federal Gun Limits,” AP via U.S. News & World Report, 2021.03.04].
One such secessionist bill, Senator Jessica Castleberry’s (R-35/Rapid City) Senate Bill 129, died in Senate State Affairs. Senator David Johnson (R-33/Rapid City) proposed a much broader nullification measure, Senate Bill 122, which would have usurped judicial authority and given the South Dakota Legislature power to declare any federal law unconstitutional. That radical proposal also perished on first committee contact in Senate State Affairs.
Rookie Representative Aaron Aylward (R-6/Harrisburg) tried nullifying federal authority over our National Guard with House Bill 1122, which didn’t get out of committee. But Rep. Aylward has gotten a little further with his other nullification bills (yes, plural… perhaps explaining why Aylward prefers a Gray suit over Union Blue). Rep. Aylward tucked nullification of gun restrictions into his House Bill 1194, which would have subjected a wide range of Presidential orders to nullification. HB 1194 survived the House but died in Senate Judiciary Thursday. Another quasi-treasonous act from Rep. Aylward, House Bill 1075, would nullify federal laws and executive orders authorizing extreme risk protection orders—“red flag” laws—that could keep mentally unstable people from accessing guns. Senate State Affairs killed HB 1075 Wednesday, but a repressive minority revived it Thursday in last week’s smoke-out orgasm.
We should be uneasy that so many South Dakota legislators want to break away from the Union. But for now we can take solace over the fact that, should any of these nullification acts pass, we can immediately overturn them in court. If HB 1075’s smokeout works and gives Governor Noem a chance to put her pen to her opposition to red flag laws, this attempt to nullify potential federal laws will not survive judicial scrutiny. See the South Dakota Constitution’s Bill of Rights, Article 6, Section 26, last sentence:
All political power is inherent in the people, and all free government is founded on their authority, and is instituted for their equal protection and benefit, and they have the right in lawful and constituted methods to alter or reform their forms of government in such manner as they may think proper. And the state of South Dakota is an inseparable part of the American Union and the Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the land [SD Const., Art. 6, Sec. 26].
That one sentence makes pretty clear that any bill seeking to separate South Dakota from the American Union by setting our laws above the legislative and executive actions of the Constitutional federal government are illegal.
I guess Aylward, Johnson, Castleberry and the other secessionists in the Capitol are free to have their fun. But put any of that traitorous garbage into law, and your “law” will end up in court, and you will lose.