For years, local governments have been able to forestall state efforts to protect liberty with misleading arguments about local control. Local control is used to justify the position that local government policies should never be limited or checked by the state government—despite the fact that local governments have been created by the state for the purpose of securing liberty.

Further, opponents of state-led reform argue that conservatives are being hypocritical when they preempt local control. Conservatives do not like federal overreach in state affairs, critics charge, so why are conservatives advocating for state meddling in the affairs of political subdivisions?

This argument misunderstands federalism. The federal government was created by the states, with certain enumerated powers delegated to it, for the purpose of better securing liberty for the people of the states. This is why the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution clearly articulates that those powers not granted to the federal government are reserved for the states and the people within those states. Where the federal government overreaches its delegated powers, the states and the people have an obligation to resist and protect their rights.