“But nullification isn’t listed in the Constitution!”
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“But nullification isn’t listed in the Constitution!”

Nullification isn’t specifically listed in the Constitution. But that doesn’t mean you can’t do it. Every once in awhile, someone tells us, “The Constitution doesn’t say anything about nullification. That means states simply can’t do it.” But they’ve got things totally backwards. It’s true that the federal government has limited powers and is only authorized […]

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The “Other” Preamble
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The “Other” Preamble

Did you know the Bill of Rights has its own preamble? You’re probably familiar with the preamble to the Constitution. Maybe you even memorized it in school. But most schools never teach that the Bill of Rights also has its own preamble. In a legal document, a preamble is like a statement of principles, but […]

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James Madison’s Constitution Two-Step
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James Madison’s Constitution Two-Step

How do you determine if something is constitutional? James Madison gave us a 2-step process. Writing in his famous Report of 1800, James Madison argued that the Alien and Sedition Acts clearly violated the Constitution. Why, because they failed a basic two-question test First, Madison said “whenever a question arises concerning the constitutionality of a […]

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Treating the Constitution Like Silly Putty
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Treating the Constitution Like Silly Putty

A lot of people treat the constitution like silly putty. If you’ve ever played with silly putty, you know you can stick it on newsprint and it will pick up a mirror image of the page. A lot of people think they can do the same thing with the constitution. They stick on to whatever […]

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Samuel Adams: “The Constitution is Fixed”
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Samuel Adams: “The Constitution is Fixed”

In all free states, the Constitution is fixed. A lot of people believe that the Constitution means what the supreme court tells us it means, until it changes its mind, of course. This is really the basis of what’s known as “living constitutionalism.” That is, the political climate determines what the constitution means, and that […]

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