The Attorney General Agrees for Us to Proceed with the Lawsuit!
As recent events have dramatically demonstrated, enforcement of the law is essential to our safety. It is essential to our sense of order and society. It is critical to the preservation of Liberty.
Thanks to the support of SJR467, the Refugee Resettlement Resolution, we are now free to enforce your rights against unconstitutional refugee resettlement.
My petition to the Attorney General gained over 17,000 signatures from Tennesseans who want action. Although he personally declines to assume responsibility for enforcing our rights in a court of law, he has now delegated his authority to us to do so instead.
“We the people” will hold Washington, D.C. accountable.
We will hire outside counsel to sue for a declaration of our rights as a sovereign state; to uphold the constitutional principles by which we foster freedom.
Serious questions remain whether the federal government is complying with the Refugee Act of 1980; whether the “Syrian surge” threatens our sovereignty; whether increased outbreaks of tuberculosis and measles are because of poor refugee vetting; whether federal cost-shifting violates the Tenth Amendment and the sovereignty of the states which have withdrawn from the refugee resettlement program; and whether your peace, safety and happiness is truly in jeopardy.
The Attorney General acknowledges the General Assembly’s serious concerns about the potential impact of the Refugee Resettlement Program on this State. He respects the fact that, as the legislative body of this State, we have taken extraordinary measures to voice those concerns, and he supports our desire to resolve those concerns with independent counsel through the adjudicative process.
Several outside lawyers and firms have offered to take our case at no charge to the taxpayers. We are interviewing them and will evaluate how best to proceed, and with whom, as our counsel.
I remain committed to keeping Tennessee safe. Thank you for your support!
Tennessee Stands with Texas
Our thoughts and prayers are with the police officers, their loved ones, the people of Dallas and citizens of this great nation everywhere whose freedom depends upon the Rule of Law and the enforcement of it; not only recognition of and adherence to the law, but support for those who enforce it in the ongoing struggle to keep us safe.
“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
King James, John 15.13
Happy Independence Day!
“These are troubled times in which we live. Now, more than ever, we must re-dedicate ourselves to the cause of freedom and the knowledge required to appreciate and sustain it. With your encouragement and support, we will. Happy 240th, America! Here’s to Old Glory’s 240th next year!”
Senator Norris’ column appeared in the Tennessean this week. Click here for the full editorial.
Department of Veterans Services acquires land for West Tennessee Veterans Home
Major new laws to address drunk driving in Tennessee to become effective on Friday, July 1st
Legislation sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris (R-Collierville) to be enacted on Friday also addresses the issue of multiple offenders. Upon arrest for a DUI, vehicular assault, vehicular homicide or aggravated vehicular homicide, fingerprints must be taken of the offender and submitted to the TBI within five days. If the offender is convicted of the offense, the fingerprints must be submitted to the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) within seven days.
The measure stems from a tragic crash in Mississippi involving the deaths of two Shelby County students by a driver who carried five convictions of first offense DUI and was out on bond for his sixth DUI. Records reveal three counties and one municipality in Mississippi failed to inform the Mississippi Department of Public Safety about the convictions so it could be logged into the NCIC database, which is accessible by law enforcement officers in their squad cars to check the criminal backgrounds of arrestees.
“This tragedy brought to our attention, as well as Mississippi’s, the need to have the appropriate records logged in and available so that multiple DUI offenders do not fall through the cracks and are accountable to the fullest extent of the law,” said Leader Norris. “These drivers pose a serious threat to public safety.”
A separate measure sponsored by Norris that becomes effective on Friday requires a criminal history background search upon arrest to determine prior arrests for DUI vehicular assault, vehicular homicide and aggravated vehicular homicide.
Statement from Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris regarding Supreme Court ruling blocking President’s Obama’s controversial executive actions on immigration
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris (R-Collierville) made the following statement in regards to the decision handed down today by the U.S. Supreme Court on immigration in the case United States v. Texas. The high court affirmed a lower court decision which resulted in a preliminary injunction against executive action taken by President Obama that would have provided illegal immigrants legal status and protection, effectively killing the plan for the duration of Obama’s presidency.
Sen. Norris said, “The Supreme Court struck a blow for liberty today and against regulation without representation,” regarding the decision. “It matters who governs and it matters when the power of those who govern is unconstitutionally usurped.”
“This should be a reminder of the importance of checks and balances and the separation of powers which must be observed and preserved,” he added.
“As this Administration and its unelected regulators have become increasingly disconnected from the reality of American life and law, it is up to those elected by the people to ensure the federal government stays in check. That’s why the General Assembly passed SJR 2 calling for an amendment to the Constitution for Regulation Freedom and more recently passed SJR 467 calling on the Tennessee Attorney General to sue the federal government over its refugee resettlement program,” he concluded.
NOTE: Technically, at issue in the U.S. v. Texas case was (1) Whether a state that voluntarily provides a subsidy to all aliens with deferred action has Article III standing and a justiciable cause of action under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) to challenge the Secretary of Homeland Security’s guidance seeking to establish a process for considering deferred action for certain aliens because it will lead to more aliens having deferred action; (2) whether the guidance is arbitrary and capricious or otherwise not in accordance with law; (3) whether the guidance was subject to the APA’s notice-and-comment procedures; and (4) whether the guidance violates the Take Care Clause of the Constitution, Article II, section 3.
Norris News – June 14, 2016
Happy Flag Day!
This is Flag Day. It is the day set aside by Congress to salute Old Glory and honor her legacy.
Today, the Stars and Stripes are at half-staff. 239 years after the Second Continental Congress adopted the flag of the United States, we mourn the murders in Orlando by lowering this symbol of freedom, bravery and opportunity in recognition of the loss but with the resolve to defend our homeland and defeat radical Islamic terrorism.
Every day is Flag Day in Tennessee.
Fourteen years ago, I proudly co-sponsored Public Chapter 841 requiring that the Pledge of Allegiance be a part of the daily school schedule, requiring students to learn it and demonstrate their knowledge of it, allowing local school boards to determine the time of day for the Pledge, asking local organizations to provide flags for classrooms, making exemptions for those who object, allowing for disciplinary action to be taken for disruptions, and requiring the state board of education “to develop guidelines on constitutional rights and restrictions relating to the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance to the American flag in public schools.”
T.C.A. 49-6-1001 requires instruction of the “the uses, purposes and methods of displaying the American flag and other patriotic emblems” as well as the history of the Pledge of Allegiance and other patriotic symbols.
I am proud to salute the American Flag today and every day. As we approach our nation’s 240th Anniversary on July 4, let us recommit ourselves to courage and “to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
Norris News – June 1, 2016
June 1, 2016
Celebrate Statehood Day!
220 years ago today, on June 1, 1796, Tennessee was admitted as a state into the Union by an Act of Congress signed by President George Washington. See it here: http://tinyurl.com/tn-1796
Tennessee became the 16th state in the nation.
Thomas Jefferson referred to our Constitution as “the least imperfect and most republican of the state constitutions.”
Article I, Section 1, provides “that all power is inherent in the people, and all free governments are founded on their authority, and instituted for their peace, safety and happiness…”
From Mountain City to Memphis, “the people have the right of exercising sovereignty, and the right of soil, so far as is consistent with the Constitution of the United States, recognizing the Articles of Confederation [and ] the Bill of Rights.” Article I, Section 31.
Since that date in 1796, Tennessee’s history has been full of men and women standing with, and for, the rights of this state, her people and our sister states.
30,000 Tennesseans “volunteered” to help defend Texas during the Mexican-American War. On August 18, 1920, Tennessee became the thirty-sixth and final state to ratify the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which provided women the right to vote. History is replete with similar examples of Tennessee’s devotion to state sovereignty.
The fight to keep Tennessee safe continues.
This year, Rep. Terry Lynn Weaver and I sponsored SJR467 which calls upon the Tennessee Attorney General to enforce our rights as a sovereign state under the Refugee Act of 1980 and the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution; to insist that the federal government communicate with us before relocating certain refugees here, and to assure that no expenditure of taxpayers’ funds be coerced by the federal government without lawful appropriation by the Tennessee General Assembly.
With your help, the General Assembly adopted SJR 467 by overwhelming majorities in both the Senate and House.
Earlier this year, we also adopted SJR2, the Regulation Freedom Amendment, and combating federal regulation without representation.
Tennessee became the eighth state in the nation to call for a constitutional amendment requiring that major regulations be approved by a majority vote of Congress.
Just last week, Tennessee joined 10 other states to sue the federal government over President Obama’s transgender bathroom edict.
Nowhere, perhaps, is Obama’s regulatory infringement of our rights more egregious than in “environmental protection.” His Clean Power Plan (111(d)) and Waters of the State regulations are both embroiled in litigation, and the State of Tennessee has intervened in the water case joining states which assert the federal government has gone too far.
Next week, I will participate in two related events.
On Monday, the “CNG from Sea to Shining Sea Road Rally” will cross our state en route from California to Washington, DC to demonstrate that alternative technology applied to existing energy resources is abundant and affordable without resorting to regulatory entanglements that kill jobs and strangle our economy. We will be making stops in Memphis, Trenton and Dickson.
On Tuesday, I’ll testify in Washington before the Regulatory Oversight Subcommittee of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. The Clean Power Plan, President Obama’s War on Coal, and some 3,000 EPA regulations are costing Tennesseans thousands of jobs and keeping other businesses from expanding. I’ll be there to remind Congress that states like Tennessee matter. We are not incidental bystanders, and we will not stand for regulation without representation.
This is a day to celebrate our statehood and our sovereignty as a state. It is also a day to be mindful that our Constitution also provides “(t)hat government being instituted for the common benefit, the doctrine of nonresistance against arbitrary power and oppression is absurd, slavish, and destructive of the good and happiness of mankind.”