Joe Wolverton, II | The New American | April 20 2012
After agreeing to changes suggested by Governor Bob McDonnell, both houses of the state legislature of Virginia passed HB 1160, the bill sponsored (and shepherded) by Delegate Bob Marshall (right) that prohibits state officers and agents from participating in the unconstitutional detention of citizens of the Old Dominion.
Neither the vote in the state House of Delegates nor the state Senate was even close: the House approved the measure 89-7 and the Senate followed suit later in the day voting 36-1 to make HB 1160 the law in Virginia.
In an interview with The New American, Delegate Marshall described the process that resulted in Virginia’s ultimate passage of a bill that reinforces the protections of the Constitution and basic civil liberties in Virginia.
“I worked with the governor’s staff to word his amendments in such a way that would be acceptable to the House and the Senate,” said Marshall.
“From the beginning, there was one goal: for Virginia to distance itself from ever participating in the illegal, unconstitutional detention of any citizen living in our state,” Marshall continued.
He expressed his gratitude to “the many liberty-minded citizens across Virginia” for their valiant effort to persuade their state representatives to add their voice to the chorus of lawmakers calling for the shoring up of the barricades placed by the Constitution around life, liberty, and property.
“This victory would not have been possible without strong grassroots support for my bill from Virginians of all political backgrounds and persuasions. I thank them for taking the time to write letters, send e-mails and make telephone calls to the governor and General Assembly members.
And I am proud of the Assembly’s response,” Marshall said.
The bill, as originally introduced by Delegate Marshall on January 16, prohibited “any agency, political subdivision, employee, or member of the military of Virginia from assisting an agency or the armed forces of the United States in the investigation, prosecution, or detainment of a United States citizen in violation of the Constitution of Virginia.”
HB 1160, the amended bill, would prevent the use of any state agency or member of the Virginia National Guard or Virginia Defense Force to participate in the unlawful detention of a citizen of Virginia by the U.S. government in violation of the state and federal constitution as set forth in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The Senate vote completed legislative action on the bill, which had already been approved by Virginia’s House of Delegates where it was introduced by Delegate Bob Marshall.
One of the most noxious elements of the NDAA is that it places the American military at the disposal of the President for the apprehension, arrest, and detention of those suspected of posing a danger to the homeland (whether inside or outside the borders of the United States and whether the suspect be a citizen or foreigner).