Daily Show on southern states thinking they can nullify federal laws they don’t like (video)

The Daily Show looks at southern states that are yet again talking about the nullification, the notion that they can refuse to comply with federal laws that they don’t like.


In addition to being unconstitutional, it’s also somewhat racist.

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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  • Leota2

    There would be poor white people enslaved in a couple of years. They wouldn’t know
    what hit them when all those corporations they claim shouldn’t have to pay more taxes started herding them like cows.

  • John Foster Way

    Exactly Arthur!

  • ArthurH

    Then its time to call Orkin.

  • 1jetpackangel

    I promise not all Kentuckians are like this. Very many, admittedly, yes. But not all. I really, really promise.

  • John Foster Way

    I think I know what’s happening!
    Americans are renovating old 17, 18, and 19 century homes and these men are crawling out of the woodwork!
    It’s the only thing that makes any sense!!
    Peace, John

  • and as I’ve previously noted, when the Compromise of 1850 allowed a federal Fugitive Slave Law, Northern states passed personal liberty laws, hampering federal enforcement, and showing the slave states that nullification can cut both ways!

  • fifth-grade history, the argument over slavery Even though I learned it from the Catholic slant, I still learned it.
    Elvis Presley had a great song called, “Kentucky Rain”, which Eddie Rabbitt wrote, in the fall of 1970. Check it out on You Tube.

  • Not to mention the New Deal and World War II led to massive government goodies to the South and the West. The Northeast has been subsidizing those deadbeats ever since, and the area of the deadbeats has been growing since 1930. I SAY CUT THEM OFF — especially Texas, Alabama, and Mississippi. While we’re at it, add West Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee.

  • PrahaPartizan

    Just like they loves them some “states’ rights,” except when it involves some benefit they feel they deserve. The whole purpose of the Dred Scott decision by Taney was to overturn the freedom laws which had been passed in the northern states and to force – not just allow but force, mind you – the northern states to assist in recovering escaped slaves. Self-interest is their only concern, despite their claims about national patriotism.

  • I think in the end the point is that the entire theory of nullification simply doesn’t work. All it does is waste huge amounts of tax payer money, and sow confusion when people don’t understand the law or what their rights are.

  • SkippyFlipjack

    It’s a struggle but I wouldn’t call it moot. The topic is southern states thinking they can just not obey Obamacare; the residents of California and other states think they can just nullify federal drug laws, and I support them. I think it boils down to, we support nullifying laws we don’t like. Right?

  • As long as there is a DEA, that is kinda moot.

  • Outspoken1

    Can we nullify the US Civil War and let the ‘South’ kive without the res tof the US help. Look at http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_reckoning/2012/10/25/blue_state_red_face_guess_who_benefits_more_from_your_taxes.html to see that the large Red area on the map is the south that receives more in tax benefits than they pay. Notice that Kentucky is 15th in non-tax payers in the US. I’m tired of supporting these deadbeats!! [sarcasm]

    Here is another interesting link – http://content.ksg.harvard.edu/blog/jeff_frankels_weblog/2012/10/04/sinners-red-states-blue-states/

  • Outspoken1


  • Or stalk an unarmed teenager and when he objects, murder him in cold blood, standing ground.

  • nicho

    How so?

  • emjayay


  • ArthurH

    It can be done! In Ohio a bank foreclosed on the wrong house and either sold, gave away or trashed all of the owner’s property inside. The most the owner got from the bank was that they won’t pay a dime in reimbursement until the owner produces a list of everything in the house and a sales receipt to prove when the items were purchased and for how much, knowing that that is impossible. Maybe the owner should due what a fellow in California did back in the 1990s. When Pacific Gas & Electric refused to refund an erroneous payment the fellow went to court and got a lien on PG&E’s headquarters building. The check was in the mail in minutes though PG&E still refused to pay interest.

  • ArthurH

    But you could meet that dog in the fourth book that everyone said resembled Reagan because when you shouted “Commies! Commies!…” it would run around in circles barking, growling and snapping as it tried to bite its own tail.

  • samizdat

    Except, if we could avoid Vogon poetry, that would be nice.

  • AggieCowboy

    60 days? More like 60 seconds. Or do you mean among those who voluntarily remain within the state after it seceded? I would be packed and heading out of Oklahoma before Fallin could finish her secession announcement.

  • Kentucky rain keeps pouring down, but not on Elvis (1970). Obviously these ignorant people never bother to learn their history. South Carolina pushed for nullifying the tariff around 1832 and the country in 1860. When the Compromise of 1850 allowed a Fugitive Slave Act, Northern stated nullified it with personal liberty laws. This is fifth-grade history, worthy of Jeff Foxworthy.

  • chrislib

    Then they’d argue a sovereign citizen can ignore laws and steal your car.

  • FuzzyRabbit

    Damen Thayer said that the president passes laws. Someone should tell him that congress passes laws, not the president.

    My god, these conservatives have no idea how the government works. No wonder nothing they say makes any sense.

  • SkippyFlipjack

    I don’t know, I sort of like California’s nullification of federal marijuana laws..

  • Bomer

    Kind of makes you wish you had Ford’s electric thumb from the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, huh?

  • You’ve just echoed my nightly prayer.

  • Bomer

    Oh, sweet mother of…
    Please, beam me up. I want off this rock.

  • Monoceros Forth

    I think the right-wing version of the Constitution runs something like, “Jesus[*] blah blah blah guns blah blah blah Tenth Amendment.”
    [*] Not explicitly mentioned in the original but really they meant to put Him in, they just forgot or something.

  • Phil

    If you’ve ever lived there, it’s not much of a stretch to hear them saying this.

    When I lived there, the factory I worked at was being permanently shut down. I was floored to hear the soon-to-be unemployed congratulating each other on keeping a union out of the plant and remarking how much more complicated it would have been with a union involved. I think it’s the heat and humidity.

  • lilyannerose

    I”m at the point where if the Red States want to run their very own country, let them. Frankly, I’m thinking that the then new and improved USA will start seeing refugees within 60-days!

  • Badgerite

    Have these people ever heard of the Supremacy Clause. I think it is located somewhere near the Second Amendment. Oh wait. That ‘s right. It’s part of the Constitution. Just like the Second Amendment. Imagine that. So here is the clause in the Constitution that says the states get to nullify other clauses that they do not like such as the Supremacy Clause.

  • cole3244

    no wonder the blue states are givers and red states are takers.

  • Hilarious segment. The nullification of nullification… holy crap… they’re in public office? oh geezz..

  • Jim Olson

    But, but, the Constitution is the Bedrock Of Our Nation!

  • Monoceros Forth

    I was wondering how long it would take for the doctrine of nullification to make its reappearance. The South has loved themselves some nullification for ages.

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