Federalism is such sweet sorrow

Gov. Moonbeam: Trump is ‘waging war’ on California by making it obey federal law

By —— Bio and Archives--March 8, 2018

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Gov. Moonbeam: Trump is 'waging war' on California by making it obey federal law
Rob told you yesterday that California’s own U.S. senator seems to think the state should be exempt from federal law. Now Gov. Jerry “Moonbeam” Brown has taken it a step further, asserting that if the federal government comes down on California for actively helping criminals escape justice, it amounts to war against the state.

California Governor Jerry Brown on Wednesday accused President Donald Trump’s administration of declaring war on the most populous U.S. state after the Justice Department sued to stop policies that protect illegal immigrants against deportation.

The Democratic governor made the charge shortly after Attorney General Jeff Sessions, in a speech in the state capital, intensified the Republican administration’s confrontation with California. Sessions accused California of obstructing federal immigration enforcement efforts and vowed to stop the state’s defiance.

Sessions addressed a law enforcement group in Sacramento a day after the Justice Department filed suit against California, Brown and the state’s Democratic attorney general over so-called sanctuary policies that shield illegal immigrants.

“California absolutely, it appears to me, is using every power it has - powers it doesn’t have - to frustrate federal law enforcement. So you can be sure I’m going to use every power I have to stop them,” Sessions, the top U.S law enforcement officer, said in his speech.

Brown called the attorney general’s trip to California a political stunt and his description of California’s laws a lie.

“Like so many in the Trump administration, this attorney general has no regard for the truth,” Brown told reporters, adding that the laws were crafted with input and support from California police chiefs. “This is basically going to war against the state of California.”


I’d say California started the war

I’d say California started the war. It’s made a series of legal and policy decisions designed expressly to nullify federal law within its boundaries.

And understand, we’re not talking here about a Tenth Amendment-type matter that one could argue the federal government has no business sticking its nose in. Immigration law has to be handled at the federal level. There’s simply no other way to do it. States can’t decide for themselves which citizens of other countries can be allowed to enter this country, and under what circumstances, so states are in no position to dictate to federal law enforcement what it can do to ensure compliance.

Yet that’s exactly what California has been trying to do on the matter of immigration. Apart from instructing local law enforcement not to cooperate with their federal counterparts, we saw this week that one Democrat mayor actually warned illegals about an impending ICE raid - helping to keep several dangerous criminals on the streets in the process.

This is a serious threat to our system of federalism. Matters are supposed to be left to the states if power to deal with them is not specifically enumerated in the Constitution, and while there clearly has been a fair amount of overreach at the federal level, we generally respect the idea that states will respect federal jurisdiction where it’s obvious, and the feds in return will leave the states alone to deal with priorities that fall under their purview.


Continued below...

If individual states can now decide that federal laws duly passed by Congress do not apply, and cannot be enforced, within their boundaries, then in what sense is such a state really still part of the union? If California is exempt from federal laws, then maybe we don’t need to seat its senators and representatives in Congress. Maybe we don’t need to count its electoral votes. Maybe we don’t need to give it any federal funding.

Being part of a nation means you respect the laws and institutions established by that nation. Intentionally obstructing enforcement of certain laws because you don’t like them. California in particular, and Democrats in general, seem to have decided that because they don’t like Donald Trump being president, they don’t have to respect the nation’s laws or its law enforcement institutions. Siding with criminals is preferable in their eyes to respecting the authority of a president they detest.

No nation can long survive if that is allowed to go on. Then again, California is such a mess that maybe we’d be better off just selling it to Mexico anyway.

Dan Calabrese -- Bio and Archives | Comments

Dan Calabrese’s column is distributed by HermanCain.com, which can be found at HermanCain.com

A new edition of Dan’s book “Powers and Principalities” is now available in hard copy and e-book editions. Follow all of Dan’s work, including his series of Christian spiritual warfare novels, by liking his page on Facebook.

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