Feds: Kansas City here we come; Kansas: not in our back yard you don’t
I wish it related to something other than the right to bear arms, but I wholeheartedly support and applaud the stance being taken by Kansas. “The Obama Administration,” wrote Kris Kobach, Kansas Secretary of State, to US Attorney General Eric Holder, “has repeatedly violated the United States Constitution for the past four-and-a-half years. That abuse cannot continue. The State of Kansas is determined to restore the Constitution.”
On 4 April the Kansas legislature passed SB102: The Second Amendment Protection Act. The Second Amendment is a difficult one, with academic debate on whether it provides a right to bear arms, or restricts Congress from preventing citizens from carrying arms, or whether it relates to individuals or a collective militia. It is, however, generally considered the right to bear arms.
There is a current debate in the US on whether this right should be restricted. Obama wants it restricted. Kansas does not. Its new law states:
Any act, law, treaty, order, rule or regulation of the government of the United States which violates the second amendment to the constitution of the United States is null, void and unenforceable in the state of Kansas.
It goes further in authorizing Kansas law enforcement to arrest and prosecute any federal agents seeking to enforce unconstitutional laws within Kansas.
Attorney General Eric Holder is not amused. He wrote to Governor Brownback in no uncertain terms:
I am writing to inform you that federal law enforcement agencies… will continue to execute their duties to enforce all federal firearms laws and regulations. Moreover, the United States will take all appropriate action, including litigation if necessary, to prevent the State of Kansas from interfering with the activities of federal officials enforcing federal law.
He claims in the letter that SB102 “directly conflicts with federal law and is therefore unconstitutional.” That is, the Feds trump the States every time.
Not so, responds Kobach (a former professor of constitutional law); not every time:
It was drafted with the intent to assert Kansas’s authority as a co-equal sovereign under the United States Constitution to regulate a subject matter that is outside of Congress’s jurisdiction under the Interstate Commerce Clause of Article 1, Section 8.
That is, the Feds cannot interfere with commerce inside and confined to an individual State; and this law refers to “a firearm that is assembled in Kansas, that is stamped ‘Made in Kansas’, and that never leaves the State of Kansas.”
If you want to bear arms regardless of anything that Obama might say or do, get thee to Kansas and buy a Kansas gun. Not sure if you can buy a Russian or Israeli flat-pack and assemble it in Kansas, but it will be tested by someone sooner or later.
That more US States take a similarly pro-active stance to protect the US Constitution whenever the Obama (or any other) Administration arbitrarily acts against it; because once freedom and liberty has gone from the United States, there will be little to prevent other Western governments doing the same.