General

No Enforcement of Federal Gun Laws in Texas? New State Law Proposed

Texas Law Shield mascot of a bear showing its arm

States have tried, unsuccessfully, to stop the federal government from enforcing its gun control laws within their borders. Recently, Kansas enacted the Second Amendment Protection Act that made it a felony for federal agents to enforce any gun laws within Kansas.  Unfortunately, that did not work and two Kansas residents were convicted of violating the National Firearms Act a few weeks ago. Texas is seeking to accomplish a federal enforcement ban, but is approaching it from a different angle—lack of cooperation. On November 14, 2016, the first day that legislators could pre-file bills for the upcoming legislative session that commences January 10, 2017, State Representative Matthew Krause, (R-Ft. Worth) pre-filed HB 110, which would prohibit Texas from using any government personnel or state resources to enforce federal gun control measures if they were more restrictive than state laws.  If successful, it would, in effect, nullify federal gun control laws.

KSG is as short as most submachine guns
Texas plans to simply not enforce certain federal laws.

Many within the State recognize that the federal government lacks funding and resources to enforce its laws without the participation of local and state law enforcement agencies. In a recent interview on “Fox and Friends,” Judge Andrew Napolitano explained that state authorities could legally choose not to enforce a federal gun law that goes against state law, but that the feds need the help of state and local authorities to enforce laws.

“Our home state of New Jersey could not, for example,” he stated, “use the police to frustrate federal law enforcement. What it could say to state and local police (is) ‘you will not cooperate.’ That will make federal enforcement of tighter federal gun laws nearly impossible.” Last legislative session, a similar bill was introduced but failed, and Krause stated then, “If the federal government has a more onerous or restrictive firearm regulation than the state does, then the state is not going to use any time, personnel, or energy to enforce those laws.” It reads, in part:

An agency of this state or a political subdivision of this state, and a law enforcement officer or other person employed by an agency of this state or a political subdivision of this state, may not contract with or in any other manner provide assistance to a federal agency or official with respect to the enforcement of a federal statute, order, rule, or regulation purporting to regulate a firearm, a firearm accessory, or firearm ammunition if the statute, order, rule, or regulation imposes a prohibition, restriction, or other regulation, such as a capacity or size limitation or a registration requirement, that does not exist under the laws of this state.

HB 110 should also withstand constitutional scrutiny. In the United States Supreme Court case Printz v. United States, 521 U.S. 898 (1997), the Court held the federal government could not compel the states to enact or administer a federal regulatory program. Even if there is no policy-making involved, Congress cannot take away a state’s sovereignty. Federalism mandates states remain independent from the federal government.

If, for example, the federal government wanted to enforce federal laws on a banned weapon, state and local law enforcement could not assist in serving warrants or participate in raids, nor share information with federal agencies.  Nor could the state or local governments house any federal prisoners or detainees, even temporarily.

This is a serious attempt by Texas to enforce States Rights under the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and to protect the rights of Texans under the Second Amendment.

We will continue to follow and report on the progress of this bill.

— by Michael Wisdom, Senior Contributing Editor, Texas & U.S. Law Shield Blog

The Mission of Cheaper Than Dirt!'s blog, The Shooter's Log, is to provide information—not opinions—to our customers and the shooting community. We want you, our readers, to be able to make informed decisions. The information provided here does not represent the views of Cheaper Than Dirt!

Comments (46)

  1. As I have commented a couple of other places regarding this subject in this thread of discussion, the idea that Texas will refuse to enforce any anti-Second Amendment Federal laws is not, in the least, comparable to refusal of the states to refuse to enforce US Immigration laws. The one reason that stands above all others is that refusal to enforce Federal laws that violate the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution, does indeed have legal standing, since the Second Amendment protects the rights of We The People to keep and bear arms. There is nothing in the Constitution that protects illegal immigrants, thus choosing ignore Federal immigration laws has no standing as compared to choosing to ignore unconstitutional Federal firearms laws. This will likely get very interesting…..

  2. Funny how people who voted for trump are calling other people uneducated, since everything that came out of trumps mouth was a lie, or like trump said if he would have lost he would not except Hillary Clinton’s win now who is being a sore loser.. so DAN I guess facts do not matter to you.. guess not an if your to blind to see that this illegitimate president has no plan or clue.. here is another fact for you dAN did you know that American banks will not lend trump any money he has to go to foreign lenders cuz if his bankruptcies. An horrible credit,also his talk about bringing jobs back he plans to hire foreign workers, just like he used Chinese steel on all his buildings when we have steel companies here.. but than again DAN facts do not matter to you I can keep going but when facts do not matter why should I waste my time with you DAN or the rest is you trump voters..

    1. @Nero – Maybe you should first take time to comprehend the basic use of the English language to learn the difference between words like ‘except’ and ‘accept’; ‘an’ vs ‘and’; ‘to’ vs ‘too’; or the basic knowledge of when to use CaPiTaL LeTtErS.

      As for the company who constructed Trump’s buildings, they used the products that were economically advantageous. And thanks to the USW, union costs have driven US companies out of business. Having grown up during the ‘rustbelt depression’, I witnessed union workers abuse the system because of unrealistic contracts…$18/hour to push a broom in the mid-80s, simply because of seniority. Or calling out sick when you weren’t (to allow your buddy to ‘double out’ and earn overtime to cover your shift…only to reverse roles the following week).

      Based on the ignorance of your post, I doubt you’ll even understand what mistakes you made in your post…which is ironic since you are posting to defend those that Trump supporters called uneducated…and all you’ve done is reinforce just how uneducated the anti-Trump crowd really is.

    2. Well Nero, facts do matter to me. Your nearly unreadable rant didn’t contain any facts, just liberal talking points that have been proven false and/or lame. By doing so, you have proved my point about clueless crybaby liberal losers. Grow up and get a clue, Nero.

    3. @ NERO
      Every time I see one of your postings, you remind me of the old saying”

      “That it is better to be thought a fool than open your mouth and leave no room for doubt”

  3. This all sounds good, and I have long been a proponent of states rights. The precedent for trampling them though was quite clear, and went almost uncontested even by Texas. When the Obama administration made marriage a federal topic and mandated all states conduct gay marriages, his closet Muslim behind didn’t care about individual rights or freedoms. He was testing the waters and showing his liberal followers how to trample states rights. So I hope texas can regain our 10th amendment rights, and believe with a new administration it is possible, but it won’t happen until then.

  4. It really doesn’t matter anymore were all screwed anyways now that some retard is in office “TRUMP” soon we will be in another major war cuz of some thin skinned narcissist who has midget syndrome!!! Time to stock on Chemical suits food water and ammunition because this clown is going to bring on a nuclear winter and good luck to ever is left we got have mercy on our souls

    1. Blah blah blah…typical liberal response to not getting their way. Grow up and get a clue.You and the liberal media are acting like spoiled children that didn’t get what they wanted for Christmas.

    2. Dan, HALLELUJAH! Imagine, calling Trump a liar, when everything that came out of Hillary’s mouth was a lie. And just who is a ‘sore looser?’ How many attempts have the Lying Left tried prove Trump’s win was illegitimate? 3,4, 5, and each time slapped down. Perhaps, or perhaps not, only time will tell what kind of president Trump will be, but he sure can’t be as bad as Moslembama, or as bad as Lyinghillary would have been, especially where Gun Rights are concerned and perhaps States Rights, too.

    3. Stop being so pessimistic about Trump it’s the first time in my more that 60 years thgat I have seen a President that is so pro American and American Citizens.

  5. It is amazing that the Fed bans states for enforcing those living here illegally and draining substantial monetary resources while doing so; uses financial punishment for not adopting Federal mandates (for example: enact a 0.08 BAC limit or lose your considerable Federal Highway funds). It will be interesting to see how this plays out. I don’t fully understand what Federal laws there are that are more restrictive than state laws in Texas, so I don’t know the potential impact this might have. Can anyone enlighten the ignorant folks like me?

    1. Look at much of your NFA stuff and many other congressional knee jerks. Like the Clinton bill that is no expired but once was law. Those are all more restrictive for no reason than some uneducated fools fears of what he didn’t Know about

  6. Please give the Title and appropriate sections in the U.S. Code.

    Also, ANY bill that is passed by Congress and signed into law by the President CAN be repealed, modified, etc. the same way.

    The prohibition of Bills of Attainder and Ex Post Facto laws does NOT apply in this case.

  7. If this works, I hope a lot of other states follow suit. That could set the anti-gun/anti-2nd amendment crowd squarely on their ear!

  8. And if a Texan tried to “defend” himself from “illegal assault” from federal agents, would he be within Texas State Law?

    I hope so.

  9. Why has NOBODY used the Dick Act of 1902?

    THE BILL was passed back in 1902 and grants full rights to anyone who wants to own as

    many guns as they can afford. Any movement to limit guns or magazines will be in direct violation of this law. Pass it around.

    The Dick Act of 1902! (By Charles William Frederick Dick)

    Are you aware of this law?

    DICK ACT of 1902 – CAN’T BE REPEALED (GUN CONTROL FORB

    IDDEN) – Protection Against Tyrannical Government .

    It would appear that the administration is counting on the fact that the American Citizens don’t know this, their rights and the constitution. Don’t prove them right.

    The Dick Act of 1902 also known as the Efficiency of Militia Bill H.R. 11654,

    of June 28, 1902 invalidates all so-called gun-control laws.

    It also divides the militia into three distinct and separate entities.

    ** SPREAD THIS TO EVERYONE **

    The three classes H.R. 11654 provides for are the organized militia, henceforth known as the National Guard of the State, Territory and District of Columbia; the unorganized militia; and the regular army.

    The militia encompasses every able-bodied male between the ages of 18 and 45. All members of the unorganized militia have the absolute personal right and 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms of any type, and as many as they can afford to buy.

    The Dick Act of 1902 cannot be repealed; to do so would violate bills of attainder and ex post facto laws which would be yet another gross violation of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

    The President of the United States has zero authority without violating the Constitution to call the National Guard to serve outside of their State borders.

    The National Guard Militia can only be required by the National Government for limited purposes specified in the Constitution (to uphold the laws of the Union; to suppress insurrection and repel invasion). These are the only purposes for which the General Government can call upon the National Guard.

    Source…

    http://www.civilrightstaskforce.info/gun_control_forbidden.htm

    Get this message out to all your email contacts.

    It’s time to learn about your rights.

    (Thus making all California (Colorado & others) gun & magazine limiting laws illegal !!!)

    I’m not so sure the current administration KNOWS what the laws, Constitution, Bill of Rights, Declaration of Independence say.

    But it doesn’t matter to them anyway. He and his minions certainly don’t have any respect for them or us and will continue to

    do whatever they can get away with to further their cause of gaining complete control

    Charles William Frederick Dick (November 3, 1858 – March 13, 1945) was a Republican politician from Ohio. He served in theUnited States House of Representatives and U.S. Senate.
    I was curious as to who was the Dick in the .. DICK act of 1909 i found out little about him http://www.fourwinds10.net/siterun_data/government/us_constitution/gun_control/news.php?q=1237163642
    but i found out a little more about the Dick Act
    Attorney General Wickersham advised President Taft, “the Organized Militia (the National Guard) cannot be employed for offensive warfare outside the limits of the United States.”
    The Honorable William Gordon, in a speech to the House on Thursday, October 4, 1917, proved that the action of President Wilson in ordering the Organized Militia (the National Guard) to fight a war in Europe was so blatantly unconstitutional that he felt Wilson ought to have been impeached.
    During the war with England an attempt was made by Congress to pass a bill authorizing the president to draft 100,000 men between the ages of 18 and 45 to invade enemy territory, Canada. The bill was defeated in the House by Daniel Webster on the precise point that Congress had no such power over the militia as to authorize it to empower the President to draft them into the regular army and send them out of the country.
    The fact is that the President has no constitutional right, under any circumstances, to draft men from the militia to fight outside the borders of the USA, and not even beyond the borders of their respective states. Today, we have a constitutional LAW which still stands in waiting for the legislators to obey the Constitution which they swore an oath to uphold.
    Charles Hughes of the American Bar Association (ABA) made a speech which is contained in the Appendix to Congressional Record, House, September 10, 1917, pages 6836-6840 which states: “The militia, within the meaning of these provisions of the Constitution is distinct from the Army of the United States.” In these pages we also find a statement made by Daniel Webster, “that the great principle of the Constitution on that subject is that the militia is the militia of the States and of the General Government; and thus being the militia of the States, there is no part of the Constitution worded with greater care and with more scrupulous jealousy than that which grants and limits the power of Congress over it.”
    “This limitation upon the power to raise and support armies clearly establishes the intent and purpose of the framers of the Constitution to limit the power to raise and maintain a standing army to voluntary enlistment, because if the unlimited power to draft and conscript was intended to be conferred, it would have been a useless and puerile thing to limit the use of money for that purpose. Conscripted armies can be paid, but they are not required to be, and if it had been intended to confer the extraordinary power to draft the bodies of citizens and send them out of the country in direct conflict with the limitation upon the use of the militia imposed by the same section and article, certainly some restriction or limitation would have been imposed to restrain the unlimited use of such power.”
    The Honorable William Gordon
    Congressional Record, House, Page 640 – 1917

  10. Another good thing about Texas is the significant push-back against the ENTIRE intrusive federal government as it has come to be and which may continue to be dominated by Washington “Beltway Bandits” and “progressives” in “blue” coastal states. These political forces will be backed up by government “workers” unions’ obstruction of Constitutionalist change and of actual elimination of “waste, fraud, and abuse”.

    Though I voted for him, the election of Mr Trump may do no more than cause a hiccup in the march against the Constitution. I suspect that he will follow in his predecessor’s footsteps in ruling by decree, as surely as Octavian became Augustus Caesar and did not reinstate the Roman Republic upon ascending to the imperial throne. That’s the real issue for many of us Texans who believe in the United States Constitution, NOT the particular subject of any decree of a given Imperial President. Pray for the health of Associate Justice Clarence Thomas and for a younger, truly “original intent” US Supreme Court majority, but also check out the Texas Nationalist Movement.

    Beyond cutoffs of federal funds, a major problem for Texas may be the significant presence of federal ground troops and related economic impact in our midst at Ft Hood and on our left edge at Ft Bliss. That makes support of Oath Keepers’ efforts a key component of continued self-government in Texas, along with exercising our Second Amendment rights whenever personal finances allow. We Texans truly love the US military, but need to make every effort to ensure our troops understand that the Constitution AND their own oaths to defend it may some day have to supersede the pen and telephone of any particular federal employee, including the one in the White House. Our true hazard is of our own making – we have let the intellectually inferior products of most schools of education propagandize our young people for far too long. That, not blue helmets and black helicopters, is the real danger.

  11. That is the same logic that “sanctuary cities” use. Now the Feds will use Fed $$$ to threaten any Texas laws to use the same concept for 2 amendment purposes.

    1. Then the state (Texas) quits sending funds generated in the state (ie. taxes) to the federal government. I would hazard a guess that more is collected and sent to the federal government (Washington) than is sent back to the state from Washington.

    2. The ‘State of Texas’ was once; ‘The Republic of Texas’, before it joined the Union after The War Between the States. In private and not-so- private discussions, in Texas, it has been suggested that Texas withdraw and once more become ‘The Republic of Texas.’ When you see TV commercials about Texas saying: “It’s a whole other country,” remember, it once was and if ‘pushed’ by an overweening federal government, just may choose that option again.

  12. This only makes sense. If the fed government can sue Arizona, Texas, and other states for trying to enforce federal immigration laws because the feds refuse to do so, then it’s only right that the states refuse to enforce federal laws.

  13. All the Feds have to do is stop providing funding to a state to get the state to do what the Federal government wants a state to do. Remember the 55 mph National Speed Limit? The law denying legal adults the right to drink a beer until they are 21? The law that also denies those same adults from owning a PDW? ALL were put into effect by stopping federal funding to the states that refused to comply with Federal law. I’m hoping that the new administration will add “sanctuary” cities/states to the federal funding bans or better yet, do away with ALL such coercion.

    1. Right, Steve…..From age 10, back in 1950, I resided in the Detroit area until I went on active duty in the Army in 1963. I have been back for several visits, and following my Army career of 21 years, I settled in Central Texas. While the Detroit of my youth was a vibrant, cosmopolitan powerhouse of industry and cultural activities, it now is a wasteland. Welcome to Texas, you are definitely making a good move.

  14. the atf can take their nfa list and shove it up their a–es, we are not bound to obey laws that conflict with or contradict our constitution, these laws are ILLEGAL, VOID, UNENFORCEABLE and are to be seen as NEVER EXISTED…MADISON vs. MARBURY…

  15. GO TEXAS!!!! I totally agree with them. It would be a nation wide law, if only, WE THE PEOPLE as a whole excercised our personal sovereignty and refused to acknowledge overbearing governmental control on this and other issues. They do, after all, work for us. A peaceful, quiet revolution could open the eyes of our justice system and the government as a whole. GO TEXAS!!! GO AMERICA!!!

  16. The problem with those is that it’s the same concept as Sanctuary Areas. We need to repeal the Federal Law or Executive Action. We can’t have it both ways, as the situation suits us.

  17. This is a good thing; I am for anyone and everyone, especially in an official capacity, foiling ATF and other alphabet agencies. However, it all needs to be sorted out formally and officially. At very least, suppressors and SBR’s need to come off the NFA registry; and the Hugh’s Amendment needs to be repealed regarding machine guns. Again, this is the bare minimum. The NFA being flushed down the toilette of history is what we should strive for.

  18. Although I agree in principle, I see a conflict here. P(E)OTUS Trump is threatening self-proclaimed sanctuary cities with the withholding of federal funds for virtually the same actions, local and state law enforcement not cooperating with federal agents in the enforcement of more restrictive federal laws.

    1. Please see my comment of 16 December at 1141 hrs. Withholding funds from sanctuary cities due to non-conformance with immigration law is not the same as states rejecting federal law that violates the Second Amendment. There is no Constitutional affirmation of the right to illegally enter the USA. There IS a Constitutional affirmation of the right of We The People to keep and bear arms. This could get pretty interesting, and it may go all the way to the Supreme Court…..hopefully after President Elect Trump has filled any existing vacancies with Constitutional constructionist justices.

  19. It will be fascinating to see the mental gymnastics liberals will use to condemn laws like this while at the same time supporting so-called “sanctuary city” policies with regard to illegal aliens.

  20. I suspect that there will likely be comments from the left-wing liberal zealots equating this act by Texas as being similar to the sanctuary cities’ refusal to enforce federal immigration law. Upon closer inspection, however, such a comparison is far fetched. That sanctuary cities choose to ignore federal immigration law at risk of losing federal funds is based upon simple left-wing objectives of courting illegal immigrants, and as such they should lose federal funding. The movement in Texas and other states to ignore federal firearms laws is not comparable to the ignoring of immigration laws, since most federal firearms laws fly in the face of the Constitution’s Second Amendment which affirms the right of We The People to keep and bear arms. There is no part of the Constitution that affirms the right of non-citizens to violate our borders or flaunt our laws by overstaying their visas, while the Second Amendment plainly does affirm our rights of ownership, carry, and use of firearms.

  21. I’m so proud that I’m a native Texican! Live elsewhere but still very proud.
    Someone, don’t remember who, at the very start of the American Revolution said: “If there is to revolution,let it begin with me.” Perhaps, Texas has fired the opening salvo in a revolution against overweening federal government.

  22. New Jersey ranks with the Top anti Gun States , hoping Fed. Govt. can repeal all of NJs Gun Laws. They are all designed for entrapment even transporting a firearm. Declares itself a “may issue State” for concealed carry but its only for Active and retired Law Enforcement and the politicians that are connected. All citizen applications for conceal carry are routinely DENIED .

    1. Growing up as a kid in NJ, I used to take my 22 bolt action single shot out into the woods to plink. I’d be in jail for life if I did this now. VT with 2A carry is the place that keeps me happy. Still go plinking, but with a 38 SPL on my hip. No permit, been doing it for years, no trouble.

  23. This is a mixed bag of a situation. Hooray for the 2nd Amendment!
    However, while we’re cheering for Texas wanting their citizens to be free of heavy-handed Federal gun control (ie ridiculous) laws, what’s to stop States from passing legislation to not support Federal enforcement of Federal laws in other areas? Anyone hear about States not wanting to honor Federal laws regarding immigration?
    This could set precidents of disregarding certain Federal laws, and I said, this is a mixed bag.

    1. Arizona, Texas, and a couple of other states got sued by the Obama Justice Dept. because they passed laws to enforce immigration laws because the feds would not.

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