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California NDAA Nullification Bill Passes Assembly Committee Unanimously

Report by Michael Boldin of the Tenth Amendment Center

Today, the California Public Safety Committee voted unanimously in favor of Assembly Bill 351 (SB351), the California Liberty Preservation Act.

Introduced by Republican Assemblymember Tim Donnelly, AB351 is a strong stand against “indefinite detention” as supposedly authorized by the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) of 2012.  It declares such federal power to be unconstitutional and also requires the entire state to refuse to enforce or assist its implementation.  A broad coalition officially supported the legislation and moved the normally partisan, and strongly democratic committee to support the republican-introduced legislation. AB351 was supported by the ACLU, Tenth Amendment Center, San Francisco 99% coalition, San Francisco Board of Supervisors, the Libertarian Party of California – and many others.

AB351 establishes the proper constitutional role by first citing the 10th Amendment as limiting the power of the federal government as to that which has been delegated to it and nothing more.

The Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution authorizes the United States federal government to exercise only those powers specifically delegated to it in the United States Constitution.

It then declares the indefinite detention powers under NDAA to be unconstitutional:

Sections 1021 and 1022 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (NDAA) codifies indefinite military detention without charge or trial of civilians captured far from any battlefield, violating the United States Constitution and corroding our nation’s commitment to the rule of law

Most importantly, the bill requires the entire state apparatus, including all local governments, to refuse to implement the federal act, or any other federal act (such as AUMF) that might be cited to give the same power to the federal government:

It is the policy of this state to refuse to provide material support for or to participate in any way with the implementation within this state of any federal law that purports to authorize indefinite detention of a person within California.

This would make a HUGE dent in any effort to further restrict due process – and would be a big step forward for California.  It would also create shockwaves around the rest of the country. As Judge Andrew Napolitano has said recently, such widespread noncompliance can make a federal law “nearly impossible to enforce” (video here).   And in those limited situations where enforcement does occur, Rosa Parks has taught us all the power of “NO!”  Passage of AB351 would mark the beginning of the end of NDAA indefinite detention in California.

According to committee chair Tom Ammiano, Donnelly spoke “eloquently” in favor of the bill.  Donnelly not only reiterated that the Constitution delegates only limited powers to the federal government, but emphasized that violations of the constitution should be met with a firm NO from the state.

“AB351…says the federal government only has the powers enumerated in the Constitution…and does not have the authority here to detain people here without due process.”

“It is important that we in California say NO to human rights abuses that are endangered by the NDAA…instead of quietly complying with unjust and unconstitutional laws”

David Warren, Taxpayers for Improving Public Safety, was a witness in favor and reminded the committee of the indefinite detention of Japanese, Italians, Germans and other people during World War II,  “The writ of habeas corpus is the most important right that a citizen has. Unfortunately our history is replete with abuses of that right going back to World War II.”

Art Persyko of the San Francisco 99% Coalition testified in favor as did Nancy Larned, a grassroots member of the Tenth Amendment Center.

“I’m here as a grandmother. I grew up with constitutional rights and due process – my children the same. My grandchildren, not so much. It’s just not right for one person or a small group to decide on those rights.”

Ammiano closed the discussion with kudos and support for the legislation, and the committee proceeded to vote unanimously in favor:

Mr Donnelly, you’ve been very eloquent in your presentation, and have found a zone that we’re all in. I compliment you for that. We got a lot of support for this bill, particularly from local people in my district (San Francisco).

The bill now moves forward to the full California Assembly for debate and vote.
The rest of the article can be read here .

About Post Author

Jill Pyeatt

Jill Pyeatt is a small-business owner and jewelry designer from Southern California. She currently serves on the Judicial Committee of the Libertarian Party of CA. She can be found on Facebook and Twitter.


  1. paulie paulie June 26, 2013

    Cool beans 🙂

  2. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt Post author | June 25, 2013

    The vote from the Senate’s Safety committee was good news, also! Next, it goes to the Senate Appropriations committee, then the
    Senate floor.

  3. paulie paulie June 25, 2013

    Thanks for the updates.

  4. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt Post author | June 25, 2013

    There’s another vote on this bill today (AB 351), I believe from the Senate’s Safety Committee.

  5. paulie paulie June 25, 2013

    The way to “remove” illegal immigrants is by making them legal. Laws against immigration are part of the “illegal laws made or passed by the president, congress, states, and cities”.

  6. Derrick Derrick June 25, 2013

    Our rights were founded by the barrel of a gun and we must restore our right again in the same way. Help us remove all illegal immigrants, corrupt politicians, and abolish all illegal laws made or passed by the president, congress, states, and cities. Join us and stop the infringement of our rights @

  7. Rod Stern Rod Stern April 24, 2013

    Thanks for the update.

  8. Rod Stern Rod Stern April 18, 2013

    And on a somewhat related note, CISPA has reared its ugly head yet again.

  9. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt Post author | April 13, 2013

    Apparently the Republican Assemblyman who wrote the bill contacted the CA LP office for support. He spoke at a rally before the convention, and learned how excited many of us were about helping to get it passed. When it passed, he said something about the bill having “tripartisan” support. THAT is cool! I like the word “tripartisan”!

  10. dave terry dave terry April 13, 2013

    JP (1)
    “This seems like such a small victory, but we’re such a screwy state here in California that I thought this is worth sharing”

    Considering that the California Assembly is very dominated with Democrats and this legislation will, in effect, be a swift kick to the groin of Obamaism, I consider it potentially a HUGE victory!

  11. Fred Mangels Fred Mangels April 13, 2013

    Good to see so many unite under the banner of liberty for a change.

  12. Jill Pyeatt Jill Pyeatt Post author | April 9, 2013

    This seems like such a small victory, but we’re such a screwy state here in California that I thought this is worth sharing. I knew about this bill from a friend at the Tenth Amendment Center when he asked my help administering the Nullify NDAA CA FB page while he was out of town. I was working on spreading the word, and I know my friend Glynda in San Bernardino was, also (she was just elected CA’s Soutern Vice Chair).

    Then I found out that Tim Donnelly had contacted the LP, and our state party was supporting the bill (here’s where that lack of communication thing comes in, Mr. Takenaga). Anyway, the bill has quite a way to go before it becomes law in CA, but EVERY SINGLE STATE needs to do this!!! If your state isn’t working on a bill like this, then contact your legislators and get one started. This is for real, folks!! Our freedom and the freedom of the people you love in this country is at stake!!!

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