If you look at the Version History of HB 1164, you’ll notice it has been amended. In its original form; the state, its political subdivisions, and publicly funded organizations would have been prohibited from implementing unconstitutional presidential executive orders that restrict a person’s rights. Constitutionality would have been determined by North Dakota’s Attorney General. That determination has been amended to read a “court of competent jurisdiction”.
It could certainly be argued that this amendment weakens — perhaps even neuters — the nullification aspect of the bill. Nevertheless, it’s still worth supporting. Why? Because Legislative Management can still require the AG to review presidential orders for constitutionality and to seek relief from implementing them.
HB 1282 has also been amended, but largely remains intact. It would create a “Committee on Nullification of Federal Laws”. In the original version, the President of the Senate was part of the committee. That’s been changed to be the President Pro Tempore of the Senate.
In addition, this phrase was eliminated:
“Until the legislative assembly considers the recommendation by concurrent resolution, the federal law, regulation, or executive order in question is not recognized and may not be enforced in the state.”
In other words, it removed the nullification requirement on the front end. The good news is that it remains on the back end. Meaning, the legislature can still nullify federal action by a “simple majority” vote on a Concurrent Resolution.
It’s likely that changes like these are the only reason these bills became palatable enough that the House Judiciary Committee voted 9-4-1 Do Pass on each of them. It’ll be interesting to see if the House as a whole concurs.
As I’ve said before, nullification appears to be the only peaceful means of pushing back against the reality of leftist Democrats controlling Washington, DC. A vote on these bills is a gut check. We’re about to find out just how seriously members of the North Dakota House take their Oath of Office.
Will they stand or cower?
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- Distribution List Report (nd.gov)
- View Floor Calendar: LegSS: Legislative Branch
- North Dakota Legislature Needs to Pass Nullification Bills – The Minuteman Blog
- North Dakota Bill Versions: HB 1164 (nd.gov)
- North Dakota Bill Versions: HB 1282 (nd.gov)