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Bill could prevent executive orders from becoming law in Arizona

(AP and Facebook photos)

PHOENIX — The state Legislature could prevent President Barack Obama’s executive action on gun safety — along with all other executive orders — from becoming law in Arizona.

House Bill 2024 would prohibit Arizona from using state staff or financial resources to enforce, administer or cooperate with a president’s executive order not in pursuance with the Constitution and not approved by Congress.

The bill also applies to federal policies and Supreme Court opinions.

“If it doesn’t have legislative authority, it doesn’t carry any water,” state Rep. Mark Finchem, the bill’s main sponsor, said. “There’s a way for the federal government to function, and it has not been functioning that way.”

Finchem, a Republican, believes Arizona should not have to dedicate resources to an unconstitutional order not approved by Congress. He said the state Legislature would determine what is constitutional and what is not.

“If it’s going to cost Arizona resources, we get to make that call,” he said.

Finchem said the president has the ability to tell federal agents what they can do, but can’t tell the state what to do without legislative authority.

“If there’s an executive order that comes to Arizona and I have somebody that comes to me and says ‘You’ve got to do this,’ my first question is, ‘Where’s your legislative authority?’” Finchem said.

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