Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Argument: Nullification v. Federal Incrementalism

BTC -  Right now, several circumstances simultaneously exist over the legal approach to Real ID. In US States, both federal incrementalism and State nullification are at work.

According to earlier reports, Real ID is being slowly allowed by State wheels of concession to incorporate federal benchmark compliance. The DHS quietly defunded the federal program in March. The Center for Immigration Studies followed up this action by publishing a statement, citing 41 States are moving ahead with material compliance. On the same day, more headlines popped up about Maine seeking to repeal State requirements adherent to the Real ID Act.


Last month, Shelli Dawdy, a Nebraska Tea Party blogger blasted the State practice of nullification.  Her beef is not towards States for opting out of drivers license standards, but for muddling State and federal jurisdictional boundaries.
"Nullification rationalizes that individual states or, apparently, individuals may rightfully determine on their own that a law is unconstitutional."
"The implication I am making is clear – elected officials who pledged nullification as a solution to the REAL ID implementation problem were ultimately fooling themselves and others or they were knowingly doing so for political gain."
The messages here are indeed mixed. The divided nature of Republicans' approach to federal immigration enforcement has deliberately and strategically increased dust-ups and conflicts holding Real ID in place. Some Republican lawmakers associated with the Tea Party have been supportive of an aggressive increase in States ability to enforce their own immigration policies.  For example, Utah lawmaker, Rep. Sandstrom, rejected the implementation of Real ID license standards.  Shortly afterward he became the legal force sponsoring a bill akin to SB 1070, permitting State police to enforce federal immigration law.

States' invocation of the Tenth Amendment would kick immigration and border enforcement towards federal decision makers. Immigration and foreign affairs are not powers reserved to the States. It is unconstitutional for States to enforce federal borders.

Nullification supporters have argued federal legislation may not be required to do away the Real ID Act if States will simply continue efforts to reject the law.
"When the legislative branch passes a law which is in conflict with a federal law, that branch of government is acting to nullify the federal law. There are numerous examples of this form of nullification, including state medical marijuana laws, Real ID non-compliance measures and firearm freedom acts. Legislative measures of this sort are more effective when they are also supported by the actions of the executive branch and the decisions of the courts. As we see in California, where LAPD and LA County Sheriff department members joined federal officials on a recent raid of a medical marijuana dispensary, the other branches of state government do not always collaborate."
Those calling for the federal repeal of Real ID's identity, border and immigration tenets have found themselves indirectly supported by Tenth Amendment Center's policy, as State rejection strengthens the argument by numbers.   States efforts to constrict federal requirements on local identity articles have lead to the re-evaluation of the Real ID Act.  Nationalized identity has historically enabled government to flag residents for racial profiling and even genocide. Landmine elements of agitated nationalism and racism latently surround the Real ID Act.  This scoots US citizenship into convenient primordial target territory for political low lifes.


Periods of economic duress have been used by political factions to manipulate otherwise tolerant citizens into angry competition for survival with ethnic groups and immigrants.  WWII Germany is THE case study proved disastrous where economically repressed elements of society, combined with racism and nationalism, were used to incite civil upheaval and to instill barbaric leadership.

The US government continues to tempt fate as it provokes lines of racial profiling and public-private censure of personal information for universal leverage in today's economic climate.  America is being pushed closer to the brink of totalitarianism.

We all watched Glen Beck lose his mind reporting existing divisive policy to the conservative right. The truth is still out there, even if you are a card carrying CPAC member.

As some plead for Judge Napolitano's Freedom Watch to take Beck's time slot, others may slip notes under the doors of liberals and progressives, saying, "REAL ID IS RACIST! Pass it on."

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