Definition of states' rights in English:

states' rights

plural noun

  • (in the US) the rights and powers held by individual states rather than by the federal government:

    ‘they took up arms to defend liberty and states' rights’
    • ‘The issue was states' rights versus a strong federal government.’
    • ‘All of a sudden, liberals have discovered federalism and states' rights.’
    • ‘No one expects Roberts' views on states' rights vs. federal powers to derail his candidacy.’
    • ‘For forty years the Republican Party has preached the gospel of federalism and states' rights.’
    • ‘Rohrabacher said the amendment was about states' rights and limiting the power of the federal government.’
    • ‘This reminds me of the issues surrounding the Civil War, like states' rights and the role of the federal government.’
    • ‘They argued that the bill would usurp states' rights and allow the central government to dictate the law enforcement policies of local authorities.’
    • ‘At the Supreme Court today, a case that gets to the heart of states' rights versus federal law.’
    • ‘Hatcher continues in this cutting style for the first half of his closing piece on federalism and states' rights.’
    • ‘If John Ashcroft were a true conservative, he'd respect states' rights and limited powers for the federal government.’
    • ‘On September 13, that court struck down a federal statute as an unconstitutional infringement of states' rights.’
    • ‘Yet the area of environmental protection is marked by intense battles over states' rights and fears of federal encroachment.’
    • ‘What an amazing theory: states' rights until big poppa federal government thinks the children have gotten out of hand.’
    • ‘No one who believes in states' rights believes in unlimited states' rights.’
    • ‘This can be explained by their strongly held belief in states' rights over federal might.’
    • ‘Proponents of states' rights and powers hold that the Constitution is a compact between the states and the federal government.’
    • ‘And we have the whole struggle now between the federal government and states' rights on issues of the environment and energy.’
    • ‘Jeffersonian democracy is based on limited government, states' rights, local control, volunteerism and privatization.’
    • ‘Two key areas of conservative jurisprudence hit speed bumps in major rulings - property rights and federalism, or states' rights.’
    • ‘The moderates (there are no liberals) upheld federal power over states' rights which is consistent with their position.’

Pronunciation:

states' rights

/steɪtsˈrʌɪts/