States action can take a step toward ending endless wars and reestablishing constitutional war powers.

James Madison wrote. “Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded,” and that “no nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.” Disregarding his warning, the U.S. government has adopted a policy of endless war.

But how can states impact foreign policy?

One way is by passing Defend the Guard legislation. This is a state bill that prohibits the deployment of a state’s National Guard units into foreign combat zones without a declaration of war, as required by the Constitution.

A Maryland activist recently hosted a roundtable discussion about the bill and strategy to get it introduced and passed.

Scott Spaulding organized the Zoom event. He isn’t some paid professional working for a political organization. He is a Marine veteran in Maryland who simply wants to get Defend the Guard on the legislative agenda in his state. He organized the discussion hoping to generate ideas on how to push this important legislation forward.

The panel included me, Dan McKnight from Bring Our Troops Home, Rep. Pat McGeehan who introduced the bill multiple times in the West Virginia House, several state representatives who have already committed to introducing the bill in 2021, and several grassroots activists from across the country.

The legislators talked about their reasons for introducing the bill. It was interesting hearing folks from across the political spectrum hit on the same theme – it’s time to end the endless wars, hold presidents in check, make Congress do its job, and restore constitutional war powers.