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Old January 26, 2013, 05:00 PM   #1
brokenhand
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County Sheriffs Can Block Federal Gun Control

Most people, including politicians fail to realize that the ultimate legal authorities in the land are the county sheriffs. This was established from the time of the Founding Fathers and upheld by the US Supreme Court in the 1997 case of Printz v. United States.

The case involved new federal regulations involved with the Brady Bill and gun control. FBI agents went around to the various county sheriffs and demanded that they follow the new federal guidelines. Then Graham County (AZ) Sheriff Richard Mack and several others saw the Brady Bill as being unconstitutional and refused to impose the new federal guidelines. Part of their defense was that the county sheriff was the supreme law enforcement officer over their county and that the federal government could not supersede their legal authority.

Referring once again to President Madison, Scalia wrote:

“In the compound republic of America, the power surrendered by the people is first divided between two distinct governments, and then the portion allotted to each subdivided among distinct and separate departments. Hence a double security arises to the rights of the people. The different governments will control each other, at the same time that each will be controlled by itself.” (P. 922).

In other words, the county sheriff is the highest governmental authority in his county and he does not have to bow to the tyranny of the federal government if he deems such actions to be unconstitutional or unlawful. In essence, the county sheriff has more legal authority within his county than the governor or the state or even the president of the United States.

Today, former Sheriff Richard Mack works with a number of county sheriffs throughout the county, helping them understand the extent of their authority and how they can legally defy the federal government. I would highly recommend that you contact your county sheriff and see if he/she is aware of their powers and duties. If not, get them in contact with Mack and urge your county sheriff to stand up against upcoming unconstitutional gun laws that the liberals are going to try to impose on us.
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Old January 26, 2013, 05:30 PM   #2
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If only Charlie Beck didn't run my county.
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Old January 26, 2013, 05:40 PM   #3
MC 1911
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Just read an article saying the AG in Delaware issued an order removing all arrest powers from the Sheriffs in 3 counties. The AG is Bidens son!! Will be interesting to see if it's true!!
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Old January 26, 2013, 05:41 PM   #4
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MC 1911, you don't have a link to that article, do ya?
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Old January 26, 2013, 05:43 PM   #5
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Didn't Beck recently change the impound policy for unlicensed drivers making it easier for them to get their cars back or something? He should be familiar with selective enforcement...

Unfortunately for most of the population the sheriff's dept. is not the only or primary LEA in town. The refusal by sheriffs to enforce federal law is mostly symbolic.
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Old January 26, 2013, 06:01 PM   #6
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Spats- 30 seconds of google-fu

http://americanfreepress.net/?p=3590
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Old January 26, 2013, 06:17 PM   #7
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DE Sheriffs

It seems its a little more complicated than the americanfreepress article would have people believe. It's questionable if the sheriffs in Delaware are law enforcement in the traditional sense.
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Old January 26, 2013, 06:24 PM   #8
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It depends on the verbage in the law as to whether a Sheriff can legally deny enforcing the law. With correct wording, it is actually a violation of the law for them to ignore or fail to enforce it.

Last edited by shootniron; January 30, 2013 at 12:05 AM.
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Old January 27, 2013, 07:49 AM   #9
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I believe

they can ignore it but can't block it
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Old January 27, 2013, 08:20 AM   #10
Spats McGee
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Thanks for the link, guys. Yeah, I guess I shoulda worked on my google-fu.
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Old January 27, 2013, 08:25 AM   #11
MC 1911
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Sorry,I should have added the link!
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Old January 30, 2013, 12:03 AM   #12
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Just like the immigration laws, they don't have to enforce, but that wont stop FBI or ATFE.
Unless they have state legislators backing them with criminal statutes for any federal officer enforcing the law, they won't be able to do much.
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Old January 30, 2013, 01:44 AM   #13
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The sheriff can't block federal gun control. The case you cite in no way supports this very broad proposition as you claim it does.

The holding of the case is congress has no authority to force the executive branch of state governments to enforce federal law. So they can't compel the sheriff to assist them but the feds can and will enforce federal law.

Quote:
We have always understood that even where Congress has the authority under the Constitution to pass laws requiring or prohibiting certain acts, it lacks the power directly to compel the States to require or prohibit those acts.

New York v. United States(quoted in Printz)
The court in Printz went on to say that requiring states to enforce federal law is not at all distinct from compelling a state to make policy.

As a community we really need to avoid crack pot theories with no basis in law.
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Old January 30, 2013, 01:43 PM   #14
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In most communities, the law is already stretched beyond it's means.

What if they had to arrest several million of us at the same time?
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Old January 30, 2013, 02:25 PM   #15
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My take on this and other court decisions is that, County Sheriffs have no power or obligation to enforce a federal statute. Federal laws are to be enforced by federal agents/prosecutors.

There are many federal laws which have state/local mirrors, these are the laws that county sheriffs are charged with enforcing.
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Old January 30, 2013, 04:51 PM   #16
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Nasty,

You are describing the effectiveness of civil disobedience. The inability to lock every violator up is what makes civil disobedience work.
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Old January 31, 2013, 07:51 AM   #17
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Quote:
What if they had to arrest several million of us at the same time?
They wont. Its one at a time.
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Old January 31, 2013, 08:28 AM   #18
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Quote:
Most people, including politicians fail to realize that the ultimate legal authorities in the land are the county sheriffs. This was established from the time of the Founding Fathers and upheld by the US Supreme Court in the 1997 case of Printz v. United States.
I am not sure what ultimate authority you are talking about. As noted, they can't block federal gun control. They don't have power over federal authorities. I think what you meant to say is that in some areas, they are the only representatives of the law of the land on a regular basis and those areas cover a lot of geograpical land, but ultimate legal authority? No.
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Old February 5, 2013, 10:37 PM   #19
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I'm amazed how many people misinterpret Printz. Nothing in Printz says what people say it says and then they offer quotes as evidence that clearly don't say what people are claiming the quote says.

In Printz, the Supreme Court said that the federal government cannot force states to do work without paying for that work. It also states that the Constitution reserves unenumerated powers to the states or the people (which is what the Constitution says). Nowhere does the Court suggest that unemerated powers are reserved to the county sheriff.

I wish it were so, folks. I really do. But it ain't.
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Old February 6, 2013, 11:52 AM   #20
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Remember that the Founding Fathers provided in the Constitution (Article VI, Clause 2, emphasis added):
Quote:
This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby; any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.
Printz v. U.S., 521 U.S. 898 (Supreme Court, 1997) ruled essentially only that a federal law could not direct state law enforcement officers to participate in the administration of a federal regulatory program.

But the federal government may still administer its regulatory programs in a State. And if something is illegal under federal law, it is still illegal even if it is not illegal under state law. So you will get arrested by the FBI, ATF, U. S. Marshall or DEA, instead of the local police or sheriff; you will be tried in federal court instead of state court; and you will go to a federal prison instead of a state prison.
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