Sovereignty, Oklahoma and Real ID

State Sovereignty effort in Oklahoma and Mark Lerner( and the Constitutional Alliance) frontline anti-Real Id and biometric expert interviews with Mike Church, radio host of The Mike Church Show on from Sirus radio about the effort in Oklahoma. 

Thanks Mark!

Excellent post from TheRightSideofLife blog-Thank you!

Per the, The Washington Times is reporting today how States are using the Tenth Amendment as one way to deal with federal mandates (excerpted):

Worried the federal government is increasing its dominance over their affairs, several states are pursuing legislative action to assert their sovereignty under the 10th Amendment of the Constitution in hopes of warding off demands from Washington on how to spend money or enact policy. The growing concerns even have a handful of governors questioning whether to accept federal stimulus money that comes with strings attached.

The sentiments to declare themselves legally independent from Washington have swept across as many as a dozen states, renewing a debate over so-called unfunded mandates that last raged in the 1990s. The states question whether the U.S. government can force states to take actions without paying for them or impose conditions on states if they accept certain federal funding.

“We are telling the federal government that we are a sovereign state and want to be treated as such. We are not a branch of the federal government,” said Arizona state Rep. Judy Burges, who is leading an effort in her state to pass a resolution called “Sovereignty: the 10th Amendment.” Ms. Burges was inspired to action by a pair of Bush administration initiatives: The No Child Left Behind education law of 2002 and the Real ID Act, a 2005 law that established national standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards. …

Oklahoma state Sen. Randy Brogdon introduced a resolution that he said would enable his state to “reclaim its 10th Amendment right to reject any and all acts of Congress that go beyond its enumerated powers in violation of the 10th Amendment.”

Other states pursuing sovereignty resolutions are Hawaii, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire and Washington. Similar measures are likely to be introduced in more than a dozen other states, analysts said.

“The states are sending a message,” said Robert Alt, a legal scholar at the Heritage Foundation. …

Republican governors Mark Sanford of South Carolina, Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Rick Perry of Texas expressed reservations this week about accepting their states’ shares of the stimulus package because they are worried that the federal government will impose conditions on how it can be spent. …

Mr. Perry sent Mr. Obama a letter Wednesday certifying that Texas also would accept stimulus money.

“I remain opposed to using these funds to expand existing government programs, burdening the state with ongoing expenditures long after the funding has dried up,” Mr. Perry wrote, clearly expressing his opposition to unfunded mandates.

Mr. Obama has promised that his administration will use federal funds to support his administration’s initiatives.

“[Mr. Obama does] not support imposing unfunded mandates on states and localities. They strongly support providing necessary funding for programs such as No Child Left Behind,” his campaign literature said. …

Many of the sovereignty resolutions under consideration in the states will not have the force of law. Even if they did, said Mr. Alt, “through the supremacy clause in the U.S. Constitution, so long as a federal statute is constitutional, it would trump state law.”

Mr. Brogdon of Oklahoma did not take issue with that. “Federal law does not trump the Constitution,” he said.

He suggested that if he becomes governor, the federal courts likely will get a case involving the 10th Amendment and congressional powers.

Radio talk show host Mike Church of “The Mike Church Show” (Sirius Patriot 144/America Right XM 166) has also been taking up the mantle of States’ rights. He’s been talking with New Hampshire State Rep. Dan Itse, Oklahoma State Rep. Charles Key, Mark Lerner of StopREALID, former presidential candidate Ron Paul, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford and others.

Here are some pertinent excerpts from the transcript with Mr. Lerner:

So what we’re doing is we’re saying to the federal government, we’re not your surrogate.  The Constitution wasn’t designed so states and people served the federal government.  The federal government only exists because of the power the people and the states have provided it.  So the way the resolution is written is a joint resolution claiming sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over certain powers, serving notice to the federal government to cease and desist certain mandates providing that certain federal legislation be prohibited or repealed and directing distribution.  So in other words, federal government, take your nose out of our business. …

We have an organization called the Constitutional Alliance.  Now, this alliance is made up of state lawmakers throughout the country – Representative Key, Senator Brogden down here, who is introducing the same resolution as Representative Key in the state Senate.  And the Constitutional Alliance, our goal is to ensure that people’s Bill of Rights, Amendments I through X, are honored.  And what we have seen repeatedly is deception by the federal government in order to circumvent the first ten amendments of the Constitution.  So we started as a group called the Stop Real ID Act Coalition. …

And we have found this to be an extremely effective way of getting  things done because the reality is this.  Our group, the Constitutional Alliance, I’ve been in 25 states in the last 12 months.  We have model legislation that would prohibit – and it’s being introduced in Oklahoma this session, and in other states – prohibit collection of fingerprint data, facial recognition data, Social Security numbers.  In other words, what we’re saying to the federal government is, there’s a reason there’s a Fourth Amendment.  And the Fourth Amendment is clear.  If law enforcement or the federal government, if they want specific information pertaining to a specific group or individual, they must meet a burden of proof.  Okay?  Probable cause, in some instances not quite that high of a burden.  But they must go to the court ad get a court order.  It is contrary to the Fourth Amendment and that series of events leading up to a court order to simply say through a legislative process all people, removing the presumption of innocence, will provide fingerprints, biometric data, Social Security numbers, et cetera. …

And I also went to the ACLU, of course left of center, and said, guys, get over yourselves, let’s work together.  We have a common issue here, protecting people’s rights, religious freedom, et cetera, privacy, states rights.  Let’s worth together.  And we have had the support of both the ACLU and ACLJ.  About a month and a half ago we had a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington. …

ACLU, ACLJ were both seated on opposite sides of myself.  And this is the message we want Americans to understand.  Don’t fall into this trap of saying this politician is bad, this party is bad.  When you start splintering, what you’re really doing is making it easier for the other side to get their agenda moved forward.  We have so many groups in this country, love the squirrels, save the whales, hate the trees, you know, we’ve got 50 million special interest groups.  It makes this hard for us to stand together as a people, to stand up to tyranny by the federal government. …

If you’re a private citizen, and you want to know how you really can – how you are empowered, I would say email me at StopRealID, that’s one word,  If you are a state lawmaker, I would encourage the person to contact Representative Key in person.  And I’m more than happy to give out Representative Key’s phone number:  area code 405-557-7354.  That’s 405-557-7354.  Now, if you’re a group, like Take Back Arkansas, or Secure Arkansas, Take Back Kentucky, OK-SAFE, if you’re a state group, and in Texas they have some as well, contact me, Mark Lerner, at  And what I do is I get you together with other groups in other states.  I’m on the road 25 days a month; okay?  And we coordinate groups working together with state lawmakers.  And I may already have a relationship with state lawmakers in your state.  And because I have the support of both the ACLU and ACLJ, because they both understand the importance of protecting the Bill of Rights, I can maybe open up doors to state lawmakers in a person’s state that they may not be able to do themselves.  I work hand in hand with Representative Key; in Pennsylvania, for instance, Representative Sam Rohrer, a true patriot; and others all over the country.  So if you work with us, we don’t go in to take the lead.  We go in to assist.  And we have model legislation that nowhere in the country has already been filed.  It’s going to be coming up in committee in Oklahoma.  This legislation prohibits the collection of biometric samples and data, prohibits the collection of Social Security numbers, DNA, all these types of things.  Prohibits the use of RFID technology.  All these things is currently going to be addressed in committee over the next two to three weeks in Oklahoma.

While I appreciate that the mainstream media and radio talk show hosts are becoming more and more aware of issues like the Tenth Amendment, realize that this is going to be a lengthy process. I have been saying that consistence and persistence wins the political and cultural war, and that will always be true. Many of the bills and resolutions currently being considered may not make it out of their State’s respective Legislative branches, or they may not be signed by their respective Governors. Yet, the point is to continue pushing forward.

All politics and activism typically starts at the State (local) level and when the grassroots groundswell is deep and wide enough, good things start happening.

A current listing of State-based initiatives can be found here


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