On the Supremacy Clause of the US Constitution

This is a guest post by author Tim L. Smith

Tim L. Smith holds a Master Degree in Philosophy, specializing in Political Theory and Ethics. Tim is a former, full-time law enforcement officer with professional, direct experience in being bailiff, a patrol supervisor, defensive tactics instructor, field-training officer, etc. Tim is presently a reserve deputy Sheriff in NC and is the author of COPS vs. The Constitution; The Neo-Progressive Exploitation of Law Enforcement.

The court’s effort, ideally, is to determine if a statute is or is not withstanding to the actual Law. Secondary laws, or statutes, that are withstanding to a Constitution are generally always null and void. What does withstanding mean? Webster defines withstanding as “to stand up against: oppose with firm determination; especially: to resist successfully.” So, for example, if the actually Law reads, referring to the North Carolina State Constitution, Article One, Section 28, “There shall be no imprisonment for debt in this State, except in cases of fraud,” and one is imprisoned for debt, by state statute, which trumps? It should be the State’s Constitution. State statutory Laws, Federal statutory Laws, local ordinances, Constitutions, are not all equally law, even though political convention edicts it so. Statutes and ordinances only carry the force of law, which is very different from being Law itself. As it relates to federal statute and state statute, the United States Constitution’s Supremacy Clause, for example, in Article Six reads,“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, anything in the constitution or laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding.” (bold added)

What does “in pursuance thereof” mean? What does “notwithstanding” mean? Notwithstanding is the opposite of withstanding. These terms are best defined and understood in their actual context. That is to say, that it is by way of letter and spirit that the Constitution is soundly interpreted, as should be any “law.” Thus, to understand what the Supremacy Clause actually means is to not only look to the Constitution itself, but to look to the State Ratification Debates, which actually define such clauses. Alexander Hamilton, at New York’s convention, articulates,

“I maintain that the word supreme imports no more than this — that the Constitution, and laws made in pursuance thereof, cannot be controlled or defeated by any other law. The acts of the United States, therefore, will be absolutely obligatory as to all the proper objects and powers of the general government…but the laws of Congress are restricted to a certain sphere, and when they depart from this sphere, they are no longer supreme or binding” (bold added)

Hamilton also stated in Federalist Paper 33, “It will not, I presume, have escaped observation that it expressly confines this supremacy to laws made pursuant to the Constitution….” Is the enforcement of a corporation’s financial interest in an individual’s debt a lawful charge of the federal government? It can be, under law of contract. Is such a federal statute Supreme to a State’s Constitution if such authority for the statute is the result of complying with special interests? Is a statute deriving from special interest also pursuant thereof? What happens when a federal statute is enforced when the State Constitution is contrary? Moreover, what happens when a federal statute is enforced when the Federal Constitution is contrary? James Iredell, at the first North Carolina convention said, “When Congress passes a law consistent with the Constitution, it is to be binding on the people. If Congress, under pretense of executing one power, should, in fact, usurp another, they will violate the Constitution.” Would not “pretence,” generally, encompass special interests? Also, in Federalist paper 78, Alexander Hamilton tells us, “There is no position which depends on clearer principles than that every act of a delegated authority, contrary to the tenor of the commission under which it is exercised, is void. No legislative act, therefore, contrary to the Constitution, can be valid.” In addition, Thomas McKean, at the Pennsylvania convention said, “The meaning [of the Supremacy Clause] which appears to be plain and well expressed is simply this, that Congress have the power of making laws upon any subject over which the proposed plan gives them a jurisdiction, and that those laws, thus made in pursuance of the Constitution, shall be binding upon the states.” So even when Congress establishes jurisdiction over people or property, such federal statutes are still void if they are not made in pursuance thereof to the Constitution itself. This is not the same thing as the jurisdiction secured in Article 1, Section 8, Clause 17, as it relates to absolute authority over the District of Columbia and its enclaves, which are absent any State consent. Many people in government like to think it so, however.

Pursuance thereof consists of federal and state secondary laws that do not hinder or prevent the people from freely exercising their fundamental rights, which are the whole intent of the primary Laws, or Constitutions. Federal and state secondary laws that are not pursuant thereof specifically undermine or interfere with the people freely exercising their natural, or inalienable rights. Not pursuant thereof is when state or federal legislation prevents the exercise of inalienable rights absent a crime, a priori. Only crime committed and convicted by the individual is what justly suspends their inalienable rights. When the Legal System is withstanding or not pursuant thereof to the US Constitution, or a State Constitution, it is working against the Rule of Law. Legislative tyranny invades free people, through the uniform, when the enforcement of the legal system takes priority over the enforcement of the Rule of Law. The Legal System today solidifies the corporate takeover of life, whereby any and all activity, any and all property, any and all everything, which sadly includes the basic necessities to exist, like water and shelter, are subservient to monetary policy and regulations, by way of government enforcement.

Webster defines notwithstanding as “without being prevented by.” Black’s Law Dictionary, Eighth Edition, defines withstanding as “Despite; in spite of.” What is an example of a secondary law that is withstanding to primary law? Primary Law, for example, secures the right of the individual to be free of unreasonable search and seizure of both their person and property. The federal, secondary law called The Patriot Act, or a federal law banning an individual from smoking pot in their home, or state laws that permit civil asset forfeiture, or state laws that allow cops to search property without a warrant, or secondary laws that arbitrarily infringe on the right to carry a gun, or an ordinance that prevents local protests without permission, are all examples of laws that are withstanding to primary Law, rather than an enhancement. Federal and State laws, city and county ordinances, can easily be withstanding to the US Constitution, and in fact most probably are. The fact is, politicians sit around and get bored, so they dream up stuff to satisfy those who want to make society the way they want it to be, or they create some regulation to make society the way they themselves want it to be. This is near equal to cops getting bored and setting up a license checkpoint.

What is an example of a state law, or city ordinance that is notwithstanding to Federal Statute, or even to the US Constitution? Be advised that the US Constitution is not the same thing as Federal Law. Federal Law consists of secondary statutory laws or Acts made by Congress, which are restricted to a certain sphere, as Hamilton says. This “sphere” is Article One, Section Eight, of the US Constitution, known as the Delegated Powers. An example of a state law that is notwithstanding to a sound federal statute is a statute that regulates the privilege of driving. This is separate, however, from the regulation of the vehicle. However, the secondary law designed to regulate the privilege of driving can easily deviate into withstanding when the officer spends equal effort enforcing a statute that infringes upon the right of an individual simply exercising a fundamental right, absent any PC or reasonable suspicion. This dichotomy, or conflict between the Legal System and the Rule of Law is largely unseen by the public, and unseen by law enforcement itself.

Lawrence Davidson, a professor of history at West Chester University in Pennsylvania, recently stated that, “Americans are culturally conditioned to believe that their country is the foundation of freedom and truth and they have neither knowledge nor interest to fact-check what their leaders and media tell them.”4 The media is there to sell you something, to determine the issues that make it into the public forum, and to shape the perception of whatever it is the media decides to report. Moreover, the media divides people against each other, all while leading them psychologically into consent of whatever the underlying agenda might be. Recently in Time Magazine, Thom Swanker, a Pentagon correspondent with the New York Times, stated that, “The government really needs to get its message out to the American people, and it knows that the best way to do that is by using the American news media. The relationship between the government and the media is like a marriage; it is a dysfunctional marriage to be sure, but we stay together for the kids.”5 So are our “leaders” like our parents? The corporate media and political leaders with “good intentions” will tell you that such statutory laws are actual Law and are necessary for public safety. “Good intentions,” said Daniel Webster, “will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority. It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters.”6 What really matters to those who desire to govern authoritatively is mass ignorance and state dependency. Like Thomas Sowell noted, “we are in a post-thinking era.” Non-thinking is evidenced in forced fairness and forced political correctness, which again, socially engineers people into what to think, rather than how to think.4 http://consortiumnews.com/2014/05/09/how-the-us-propaganda-system-works/

5 http://time.com/2976711/obama-press-surveillance/

6 Daniel Webster, speech at Niblo’s Saloon, New York, March 15, 1837