Thursday, January 13, 2011

Mo' 10th Amendment in Montana

If it passes, it will be interesting.

A new legislative proposal [in Montana] would declare that the state's local county sheriffs are the pre-eminent law enforcement authority in their jurisdictions, and federal agents such as those working for the Internal Revenue Service, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and others, would be required to get permission from them before they could take any action.

What would Elliot Ness say?


Anonymous said...

He would say this law endangers my country, all because Montana wants to engage in a pissing match. If the case is federal, it's within their authority to take action. Out of professinal courtesy, I would imagine, the feds may let local authorities know what's going on, and ask for help if need be.

Sounds eerily similar in underminding federal authority when Maryland attempted to tax federal banks, which was eventually found unconstitutional
(McCullough v. Maryland).

Dad29 said...

Well, I'm a bit flummoxed by the proposal as well--especially the "Federal law" part.

OTOH, it is not apparent that the Sheriff can PREVENT enforcement of Federal law. The summary only requires notification-and-OK.

One could infer that the "OK" is granted ("shall") rather than not granted ("may".)

But we'll see, eh?

Terrence Berres said...

If I recall correctly (from books, not personally), the South Carolina legistature once passed a law something along these lines, which was then applied at Fort Sumter.