Tag Archives: Constitution

Constitutionally, Trump’s Opinion on Afghanistan Shouldn’t Matter

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As a candidate, Pres. Trump called the war in Afghanistan “futile” and pledged to pull the U.S. out of the quagmire. But in a recent speech, the president announced a plan committed to extending and deepening U.S. military involvement in that country. Trump said he was now convinced “a hasty withdrawal would create a vacuum for […]

How the Federal Fight Against Sanctuary Cities Undermines the Constitution

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We all need to fight the temptation to abandon constitutional principles when they conflict with our policy preferences. I recently appeared on a radio show to talk about the Tenth Amendment and nullification. The conversation moved along marvelously as I explained Madison’s blueprint, and how state and local governments can thwart unwarrantable federal actions (and […]

Maine Governor Wants Feds to Bring the Hammer Down on His Own State

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Gov. Paul LePage is doing it wrong. Instead of protecting the people of Maine from overreaching and unconstitutional federal overreach, he’s begging the feds to trample on his state’s sovereignty. You see, the Republican governor doesn’t like marijuana. And he doesn’t like the fact that the people of his state voted to legalize weed. He wants […]

Thoughts from Maharrey Head #98: Fourth of July Fireworks and Nullification

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“10 Minutes Closer to Freedom” In this episode of Thoughts from Maharrey Head, I talk about how my Independence Day fireworks experience demonstrates the power of nullification. Despite all of the successes we’ve had at the Tenth Amendment Center over the last few years, whenever I talk about nullification, somebody wants to argue, “It will […]

James Madison and the Necessary and Proper Clause

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“Necessary and proper” ranks among the most abused clauses in the Constitution. It has been dubbed the “elastic clause” because of the perception that it allows the scope of federal power to expand. The federal government began abusing this clause within years of ratification. In 1800, James Madison countered these early abuses, forcefully arguing that […]

Constitution 101: The Supremacy Clause and the Bill of Rights

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Many Americans believe the Bill of Rights apply to state and local governments. Most who hold this position rely on the 14th Amendment and the “incorporation doctrine” to support their position. But some proponents of using federal power to restrict state and local actions through the Bill of Rights use tortured legal reasoning to argue […]

Thoughts from Maharrey Head #94: The Preamble to the Constitution

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“10 Minutes Closer to Freedom” In this episode of Thoughts from Maharrey Head, I talk about the preamble to the U.S. Constitution – what it tells us and what it doesn’t. If you’re an American, you’re probably familiar with the preamble to the Constitution. In fact, you may well have memorized it at some point […]

Subverting the Constitution: Madison on General Welfare and Common Defense

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The words “provide for the common defense and general welfare” rank among the most abused phrases in the Constitution. I often refer to this as the “anything and everything clause.” Partisans on both the political left and right use “general welfare and common defense” to justify all kinds of federal actions, from wars to social […]