From the June 2009 Idaho Observer:

Idahoans taking bold 10th Amendment step, urge others to follow

The legislatures of several states have recently passed memorials and resolutions that contain strong, state’s rights language warning the federal government not to tread on the 10th Amendment. But, until the states refuse to take federal money that comes with federal strings, their 10th Amendment resolutions are impotent rhetoric. A group in Idaho is pushing to add teeth to the state’s 10th Amendment resolution and encourages activists from other states to duplicate its efforts—and get a Montana-style (The IO, May, 2009). gun law passed removing federal jurisdiction from all guns, ammo and accessories produced, sold and kept in Idaho.


We the Undersigned People of the State of Idaho hereby request that the Idaho Legislature and Governor commence immediate

action to enforce the statements as set forth in House Joint

Memorial No. 4 concerning the Constitutional violations of the Tenth Amendment, said statements are as follows:

"NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by members of the First Regular Session of the Sixteenth Idaho Legislature, the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring therein, that the State of Idaho hereby claims sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the Federal government by the Constitution of the United States.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this serves as notice and demand to the federal government, as our agent to cease and desist, effective immediately mandates that are beyond the scope of these constitutionally delegated powers.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that all compulsory federal regulation that directs states to comply under criminal or civil penalties or sanctions, or requires state to pass legislation or lose federal funding, be prohibited."

It is recognized, that the greatest impediment to the above requested enforcement of said Tenth Amendment action is the alleged dependency of the State of Idaho on federal funding grants conditioned on restrictive mandates and spending guidelines. Therefore, we the people of the State of Idaho hereby request that the Idaho Legislature and Governor refuse any and all federal funding that imposes any mandates, restrictions, or spending guidelines that may hinder the complete freedom of action by the State of Idaho to exercise it’s lawful tenth Amendment rights.

And finally, we the people of the State of Idaho hereby request that the Idaho Legislature and Governor support and enforce a proposed bill now being drafted, known tentatively as the "Idaho Firearms Freedom Act" (short title).

Fellow Idaho Patriots:

Attached is an Idaho petition form for you to distribute far and wide for signatures, but first I would like to take this opportunity to expand on the purpose of this petition and what it really means to us Idaho Patriots.

In the 2009 first session, the Idaho legislature on it’s own and through the efforts of primary sponsor Dick Harwood and seven other co-sponsors, passed a "sovereignty declaration " titled House Joint Memorial No. 4. This "sovereignty declaration " basically told the Federal Government that they had usurped and violated the Tenth Amendment rights of the state of Idaho, and are now being served "notice and demand to cease and desist immediately" all Tenth amendment violations (this is cited more fully in the petition). It has been said by some that these "sovereignty declarations" by the various states have "no teeth" and will be largely ignored by the federal government (feds) but, in the case of Idaho and some other states, I totally disagree with that assessment for the following reasons:

1. These "sovereignty declarations " are indeed a "shot across the bow" in the sense that the states, not an individual, has served notice to the feds how dissatisfied they are with them, with the potential that more action may be forthcoming if their "sovereignty declarations" are ignored.

2. The fact is evident, that multiple states, with more "coming on board," are presenting a greater "threat" to the feds than just one lone state.

3. Our Idaho legislators have done a commendable job of "starting the ball rolling" with House Joint Memorial No. 4 but it is now our responsibility to help these legislators put force and action into the statements by our petition and ability to form a formidable coalition of political influence.

4. Thanks to Dick Harwood a bill similar to the "Montana Firearms Freedom Act" is now being drafted to be presented to the Idaho Legislation and Governor. This legislation does present a direct challenge to the feds. I would recommend that you "Google up" both "Montana Firearms Freedom Act" and House Joint Memorial No. 4, and become informed of the specifics. As you may have surmised, this firearms issue is not just for firearms itself, but is the opening issue ("shot") in the battle of state sovereignty. I would urge all of us to link up by email, phone, web sites, etc. to become a formidable coalition of political influence. As you can see, I feel this tenth Amendment issue can be a significant winnable battle for us in Idaho and then grow into a national coalition as we link up with the other states who are working towards the same goals.

I do commend you as you continue in your local education programs, rallies and meetings but would like to request that we all join together on this 10 Amendment effort.


Pete Ketcham