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NC Senate District 18 has three Republican candidates in the primary election. There’s one clear choice – Glen Bradley. Bradley is the only candidate with any experience in public office. In fact Bradley won his seat in House District 49 even though he was outspent by his Democratic opponent by a margin of 7 to 1.
As a freshman legislator Bradley wrote HB 587 – the NC Job Growth through Regulatory Reform bill. Rep. Bradley understands the negative effect that state regulations have on job growth. “Under intense pressure from tens of thousands of concerned North Carolina citizens, the majority of the text of HB 587 was put into Senate Bill 781 Regulatory Reform and became the crown jewel jobs piece of the Joint Committee's Regulatory Reform bill, which [was] passed overriding the Governor's veto.”
Far too many politicians proclaim their support for the Constitution but their “support” translates into a campaign slogan devoid of substance. Not so with Bradley. As a member of the NC House he took his oaths to uphold the US Constitution and NC Constitution seriously. Bradley’s commitment to the letter and spirit of the US Constitution placed him at odds with his own party’s leadership.
The 10th Amendment of the US Constitution reads,
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
The states had not agreed to a system in which they would submit without protest to whatever the federal government should do. To the contrary, the states established a federal government with limited powers, and reserved for themselves all powers they did not delegate to that government. Any measures the federal government should take beyond the powers delegated to it are absolutely void. The federal government, which the states themselves created, cannot hold a monopoly on constitutional interpretation and cannot decide for itself what the extent of its own powers are. That would mean the people were governed by the mere discretion of their rulers rather than by the Constitution. (Thomas E. Woods, Jr. Nullification – How to Resist Federal Tyranny in the 21st Century Washington DC: Regnery Publishing Inc. 2010. 47-48).
The 10th amendment is dynamic and relevant – it’s also historically grounded in the KY and VA Resolutions of 1798. Unfortunately one of the candidates running against Rep. Bradley commented, “I think when you talk to Glen you’ll find ... He’s going to talk about the constitution and things like that, which is fine … we just have different priorities. The things I see him advocating for have to do a lot with people’s personal liberties” … voters “aren’t sending me down to the General Assembly to nullify all of the federal laws we don’t like. Nullification is a strategy that usually doesn’t get you any closer to your goal,” he added. “It’s a waste of time [bold italics added].”
Such an attitude of disrespect for the Constitution in general and the 10th Amendment in particular is far too common among the GOP in the NC legislature. It’s tragic when a candidate believes that nullification involves “federal laws we don’t like.” Article I Section 8 of the US Constitution specifies the powers delegated to Congress. Any laws that are not in harmony with these delegated powers are unconstitutional and subject to nullification by the states.
In NC the legislature had an anemic response to Obamacare- they drafted a resolution requesting the state’s Attorney General to sue the federal government. This was vetoed by the Governor. However if it passed all that would have been accomplished would have been a lawsuit – there was no guarantee that national health care would have been stopped in NC. The NC legislature could have invoked the 10th amendment and declared that there is no Constitutional authority for every citizen to obtain health care. The NC state assembly has this power which the leadership refuses to use.
President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2011 into law on December 31, 2011. Two sections of the NDAA subjects US citizens to indefinite detention without due process, i.e., without a trial. The federal government now claims it has the authority to kidnap any US citizen it merely suspects of terrorism. This is tyranny which the states can and should nullify.
Virginia became the first state to nullify these provisions of the NDAA on April 18, 2012: On Wednesday, the Virginia legislature overwhelmingly passed a law that forbids state agencies from cooperating with any federal attempt to exercise the indefinite detention without due process provisions written into sections 1021 and 1022 of the National Defense Authorization Act. HB1160 “Prevents any agency, political subdivision, employee, or member of the military of Virginia from assisting an agency of the armed forces of the United States in the conduct of the investigation, prosecution, or detention of a United States citizen in violation of the United States Constitution, Constitution of Virginia, or any Virginia law or regulation.”
Rep. Bradley has gone on the record to voice his opposition to those provisions of the NDAA which involve indefinite detention of US citizens without due process. Bradley also publicly stated his intention to introduce a resolution against these provisions of the NDAA in the coming short session. The voters in the 18th Senate District need to understand what’s at stake and elect Glen Bradley.