FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 2, 2009
Austin — Today, on Texas Independence Day, Sen. Robert Nichols (R-Jacksonville) filed a resolution calling for an end to federal mandates violating states' rights. The resolution, Senate Concurrent Resolution 35, is identical to House Concurrent Resolution 50 by Rep. Brandon Creighton (R-Conroe).
"The Tenth Amendment specifically limits the rights of the federal government in relation to states' rights," said Creighton. "This resolution declares that the State of Texas wants the federal government to stop acting outside its legal authority and return power to the states as our founding fathers intended."
HCR 50 and SCR 35 follow similar efforts in more than a dozen states around the country. Nichols explained why the resolution is so timely.
"The need to protect the rights of states is nothing new, but in light of the rules and regulations attached to the federal stimulus package, now is an especially important time to reaffirm the independence of state governments," said Nichols.
Creighton cited a number of recent issues affecting states.
"From restrictions on gun and ammunition sales, to freedom of choice issues, to the Real ID Act, the federal government is passing laws that limit a state's ability to govern itself," said Creighton. "Texas simply wants to send the message that we want to govern ourselves and decide for ourselves how our money is to be spent."
Nichols stressed constitutional background of states' rights.
"You don't have to be a constitutional scholar to understand the 10th Amendment," said Nichols. "It clearly explains that powers not granted to the federal government are reserved for the states and the people."
The resolution, which if approved expresses the sentiment of the Senate and directs the Texas Secretary of State to forward the resolution to the U.S. Speaker of the House, the President of the U.S. Senate, and all members of the Texas Congressional delegation.
Sen. Dan Patrick (R-Houston) is a joint author of SCR 35.