62 lawmakers: Second Amendment forbids federal gun regulations

As President Barack Obama makes a push for new federal gun regulations, a large group of South Dakota lawmakers are pushing back.

They’ve signed on to a “legislative finding” — a declaration of the Legislature’s opinion in the form of a law — that finds the “Founding Fathers freely and willingly abjured all legislative and executive authority to regulate gun ownership and usage… to individual citizens.”

Read the measure here.

The measure, Senate Bill 207, looks “askance at all federal legislation and executive orders that contrive to evade or elude the sacred, hallowed, and clear intent and purpose of the Second Amendment which specifically and definitively prohibits all infringement of this fundamental right by federal insinuation.”

Less theoretically, the measure instructs the attorney general to protect, “by litigation if necessary, the rights of South Dakota and its citizens against all dilution and diminution of Second Amendment rights.”

UPDATE: Another bill, brought by Rep. Stace Nelson, R-Fulton, takes up a similar subject but is much more explicit. Rather than simply stating the Legislature’s opinion, his House Bill 1222 declares federal firearm restrictions “unenforceable within the borders of South Dakota.”