State legislators around the country have introduced more than 200 bills aiming to nullify regulations and laws coming out of Washington, D.C., as they look to rein in the federal government.
The legislative onslaught, which includes bills targeting federal restrictions on firearms, experimental treatments and hemp, reflects growing discord between the states and Washington, state officials say.
“You have a choice,” said Kentucky state Rep. Diane St. Onge (R). “To sit back and not do anything or say anything and let overregulation continue — or you have the alternative choice to speak up about it and say, ‘We know what you are doing or intend to do and we do not think that it is constitutional and we as a state are not going to stand for it.’ ”
Last month, St. Onge introduced H.B. 13 to nullify federal gun control laws within Kentucky state lines. Similar legislation has been introduced in seven other states.
“This law is saying the sheriff and those under him do not have to follow federal regulations,” she said.
Friction between the states and the federal government dates back to the nation’s earliest days. But there has been an explosion of bills in the last year, according to the Los Angeles-based Tenth Amendment Center, which advocates for the state use of nullification to tamp down on overzealous regulation.
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