Wednesday, December 15, 2010

American Government 101

Jillian Bandes: "Nullification? We never covered that at Bob Jones University." Apparently the EPA is slow to approve new coal-mining permits in West Virginia, so...
For state representative Gary Howell, that’s unacceptable. “The EPA gets their authority from the Commerce Clause. Where no interstate commerce exists, their authority stops,” he said. That’s why he has introduced a bill that would exempt West Virginia coal from the EPA’s grip, allowing coal to be regulated only by a state agency.

The EPA can only regulate interstate commerce, Howell explains. If coal is produced in West Virginia and burned in West Virginia, it shouldn’t be under the EPA’s jurisdiction. This doesn’t mean that environmental standards won’t be adhered to. It simply means that state agencies can streamline and prioritize enforcement instead of it being handled by a centralized bureaucracy.
Wow, that sounds like a novel and well thought out argument. Is it by any stretch of the imagination constitutional?
“The answer is a firm maybe,” said Ilya Shapiro, a constitutional scholar at the Cato Institute. (snip) Nick Dranias, the director of the Center for Constitutional Government at the Goldwater Institute, was optimistic.
Well there you have it. Unbiased expert opinion. Fuck you, Congress! Blow it out your ass, Executive branch! West Virginny is king of West Virginny!

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