John C. Calhoun: His View of Government Resonates with the GOP


Born today?  John C. Calhoun.

Who thought states' rights a real boon.

His stubborn stance  on nullification

Resulted in slavery's annihilation.

"The theory of nullification is based on the concept that the States are the final decision-makers when it comes to the limits of the federal government. The theory indicated that the federal laws can be rejected by the States if they believe the laws are beyond the constitutional powers of the federal government. According to Calhoun, since the states essentially have sovereignty, they have the right to veto or reject acts of the federal government if the states believe the laws encroach their rights." []

Echoes of Calhoun:

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley

Governor Nikki Haley voiced support of a South Carolina bill that would nullify federal Common Core  State Standards.  "We don’t ever want to educate South Carolina children like they educate California children,” Haley said back on January 17  to a Republican women's club. “We want to educate South Carolina children on South Carolina standards, not anyone else’s standards.”


The following Republican governors have rejected Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Health Care Act: Rick Perry of Texas, Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, Sam Brownback of Kansas, Paul LePage of Maine, Dave Heineman of Nebraska, and of course, South Carolina's Nikki Haley.



Leave a comment
  • Apparently, the Supreme Court, starting with John Marshall, said no. Especially in Martin v. Hunter's Lessee, where the Supreme Court said that the Virginia courts had to honor the mandate of the Supreme Court.

    On the other hand, the Supreme Court decision that upheld the ACA also said in part IV that the states had the right to opt out, so those 7 governors did what they had the right to do. On the other hand, they are going to have to have the states cough up the additional Medicaid cost, unless their hospitals are going to tolerate giving even more free care.

  • Thanks for reading, Jack. It is true about part IV, but it is a good example of their exercising states' rights. And , as you say, their actions could come back and bite the back pocket.

  • In reply to Aquinas wired:

    10th and 11th Amendments are still in the Constitution.

  • Interestingly, the 11th Amendment itself was in response to another famous Supreme Court case, Chisholm v. Georgia.

Leave a comment