Last week, the New Hampshire House passed HCR 19, a Tea Party-backed resolution asserting the state’s authority to nullify federal laws it deems unconstitutional. Yesterday, the bill that 242 New Hampshire state reps supported was disavowed by Newt Gingrich and a Union Leader editorial.
“I think Andrew Jackson dealt with that” during the nullification crisis, he said, adding that Lincoln dealt with it in a more profound way a few decades later.
State politicians who think the federal government is acting unconstitutionally can sue the federal government or direct their delegation in Washington to oppose the unconstitutional actions, he said.
“It would strike me as very implausible that states could actually nullify,” he said.
[T]hey are wrong that the State of New Hampshire can simply declare those actions null and void. If states had that authority, the union would collapse, as every state nullified whatever federal laws it disliked. This question was settled in the 19th century. It should remain there.