Massachusetts Burma Law

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The Massachusetts Burma Law was a law enacted in 1996 by the Massachusetts legislature limiting state entities from purchasing services from companies doing business with Myanmar (Burma). A "restricted trade" list was compiled by the Commonwealth, which included 34 members of the National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC). The NFTC filed suit against then-Massachusetts Secretary of Administration and Finance, Stephen Crosby, in Crosby v. National Foreign Trade Council, 530 U.S. 363 (2000), arguing that the Massachusetts law infringed upon the federal government's foreign affairs and foreign commerce powers, and that it was already pre-empted by federal law. Massachusetts was also charged with violating the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution. The NFTC won the case with U.S. Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter ruling that "the state Act is preempted, and its application unconstitutional, under the Supremacy Clause." The law was thus nullified.

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