In law “nullification” is not repeal or rescission of statutes or executive or judicial actions. It is the result of a sustained, widespread refusal to cooperate with them, until those attempting to enforce the actions are confronted with the unpalatable choice of either backing down or resorting to murderous brutality.
To say federal laws are always supreme just because Congress passes them makes a mockery of the principles of federalism that have always guided the governance of this Union, whatever the flavor of federalism of the day. We need to build some structural checks and balances into the state / federal relationship to reinforce federalism. Jon's proposed amendment to the Texas and other state constitutions seems to me to be a very good idea, serving as a possible institutionalized relief for the pressure that builds up against instances federal over-reach.
1. Commission. Establish a "Federal Action Review Commission" ─ a special commission with grand jury powers to meet continuously with rotating membership drawn from a pool of legal historians and constitutional scholars, appointed by the Governor, Attorney General, or Legislative Council; empowered to review the constitutionality of congressional legislation, or federal regulations or decisions, and if it finds such legislation, regulations, or decisions to be unconstitutional, to issue an edict, with the force of law, requiring that no state or local officials, employees, or contractors cooperate in the enforcement of it, and urging state citizens to refuse to cooperate. This Commission would be established by an amendment to the Texas Constitution.
2. Structure and procedure. The Commission shall consist of 23 members, who shall serve for staggered terms of 4-8 months, drawn at random from a pool of at least 230 constitutional scholars and legal historians, who shall meet for at least one hour once a week, with a quorum of 16, and a vote of 12 required to issue an edict, based on a presumption of nonauthority of federal officials and agents and requiring strict proof of constitutionality from deductive logic and historical evidence. It shall be open to direct complaints of the unconstitutionality of federal actions from any citizen. It shall have the power to subpoena witnesses, and its deliberations shall be secret, except that it may disclose anything in its presentments. It may authorize criminal prosecution by issuing an indictment to any person, not necessarily a lawyer, upon a finding that the court cited has jurisdiction and that evidence of guilt is sufficient for trial.
3. Penalties. State and local officials, employees, and contractors shall be duly notified in writing of such edicts within ten days and shall have twenty days to comply or be subject to termination after one written warning and a second failure to refuse to cooperate with federal officials or agents.
4. Funding. Establish a state fund to pay for legal and financial support of state citizens and officials who refuse to cooperate with unconstitutional federal statutes, regulations, or decisions, with the intention to obtain judicial decisions that support the unconstitutionality of the federal actions.