By Sam Burnham
There has been a lot of anger directed at the President for his decision to remove the United States from the non-binding Paris Climate Accord that former President Barack Obama entered via executive action. The accord was not a treaty, as all treaties require a 2/3 vote in the Senate for ratification.
My purpose here is not to comment in regard to the Paris Accord. I'm not here to opine on the merits of the accord. But a very pleasing byproduct has arisen from the fallout of the exit. California, NewYork, and Washington, three of our most liberal-progressive states have expressed their intention to exert their 10th Amendment rights to take a different direction than the over centralized power in D.C. Such independent thinking by these three states seemed unthinkable just six months ago. Seeing states whose acquiescence to Federal rule bordered on sycophancy step out and do their own thing is very encouraging. This may prove to be one of the best developments of the year. I'm hoping it is a trend that will continue.
While the Constitution prohibits states from entering into treaties with foreign powers, there is nothing that would deny them the right to set the goals laid out in Paris and hold their states accountable to those standards. For far too long the Left has demanded that everything be compulsory, nationwide. This was not the intent of the Founders and goes against the very principles of America. In short, Federal mandates are un-American but Federalism is uniquely American.
So a toast: to these liberal states forming an agreement - a confederacy even - and stepping out on principle and putting their money where their mouths are! Cheers!
Historian, self-proclaimed gentleman, agrarian-at-heart, & curator extraordinaire