Nullification 101

Ever since November 7, 2012, the topic of Nullification has been in the news more than ever. Just imgres-1what is Nullification?

Doctrine upholding the right of a U.S. state to declare null and void an act of the federal government.

Nullification came to light in Thomas Jefferson’s writing of the Kentucky Resolutions in 1798. Jefferson expressed the idea, “nullification…is the rightful remedy” when the federal government reaches beyond its constitutional powers. Fellow statesman James Madison writing in the Virginia Resolutions of 1798, said the states were “duty bound to resist” when the federal government violated the Constitution.

Jefferson was thinking far beyond his years. He had a long view prospective that should the Federal Government be allowed to determine the full extent of its powers, the states and we as citizens of those states have no right to be surprised when the Federal Government keeps discovering new powers.

As recently as 2005, approximately 24 states nullified the Real ID Act of 2005. Now in 2013, states are once again taking action against the federal government and its over reaching powers. States are currently taking Nullification action on The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). States are also taking action against the recent push by the Obama Administration to negate the Second Amendment.

There are 16 States which have introduced both, The 2nd Amendment Preservation Act and The Firearms Freedom Act. Wyoming has passed the legislation in one of their state houses. The 2nd Amendment Preservation Act is:

a state-level bill that renders all federal gun laws, regulations, rules, acts, orders, etc – null and void within the borders of the state.

The Firearms Freedom Act:

declares that any firearms made and retained in-state are beyond the authority of Congress under its constitutional power to regulate commerce among the states. The FFA is primarily a Tenth Amendment challenge to the powers of Congress under the commerce clause, with firearms as the object.


Nullification isn’t simply some big fancy Washington Legislative word. Its a critical tool for us as brave and free American citizens.