A state Senate bill proposed Monday would deny any state assistance to federal officers attempting to infringe upon Alaskans’ Second Amendment rights, unlawfully detain them or exercise a variety of federal powers signed into law since the 9/11 terror attacks.
Senate majority spokesperson Carolyn Kuckertz says Sen. John Coghill's (R-North Pole) Senate Bill 75 isn’t a companion bill to House Speaker Mike Chenault’s (R-Nikiski) House Bill 69. That measure, which passed the House last month, would make it a state felony for federal agents to enforce new gun laws attempting to restrict gun ownership in Alaska.
Under SB 75, no state agency would be able to use its resources to aid federal agents in enforcing any federal law that would “infringe on a person's right, under the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, to keep and bear arms.” The bill also denies assistance in cases which would violate a person’s right to or protections of due process under the state and federal constitutions, including the latter document’s Bill of Rights.
In addition, the bill lists several specific federal laws whose enforcement would also trigger its block on state aid to federal agents. They include:
- Congress’ Sept. 18, 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force, empowering the president to use “all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the (9/11) terrorist attacks;”
- Sections 1021 and 1022 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, covering the president’s authorization under the AUMF to detain members or supporters of “al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces;”
- Sections 1021 through 1028 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013, governing topics ranging from an “extension of authority to make rewards for combating Terrorism” to a “prohibition on the use of funds for the transfer or release of individuals detained at United States Naval Station, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba;” and
- Division B of the REAL ID Act of 2005, a sweeping law covering everything from the deportation of illegal aliens from the U.S. for terrorist activity to federal standards for state-issued identification cards.
In a Monday statement, Coghill linked the bill to the topic of federal overreach, taken up this session in bills from Gov. Sean Parnell and several other lawmakers.
“Recent actions by the federal government are threatening due process and the Second Amendment rights established by the U.S. Constitution,” Coghill said. “This legislation sends a strong message to Washington, D.C. that we are not going to stand for anyone trampling on the rights of Alaskans.”
The bill has been referred to the Senate Judiciary and State Affairs committees.
Contact Chris Klint