If it is alleged that some action or policy of the US federal government is acting in violation of federal law or the US constitution, it is common that someone will file a lawsuit in federal court requesting that the court issue an injunction against the federal government. For example, in the Trump travel ban case, injunctions were issued (though eventually overturned by the Supreme Court) to prevent the government from enforcing the travel ban.

However, state courts are also allowed to issue rulings based on federal law, and some people believe that the reason why the constitution allows jurisdiction stripping is that the state courts would still be available to grant relief based on federal law and the federal constitution. I wonder whether that is true in the case of injunctions against the federal government as well. If Congress were to eliminate the ability of federal courts to hear certain types of cases (in order to indirectly prevent them from issuing injunctions), would similar relief be available from state courts in such cases?

  1. According to the US constitution, do state courts have the authority to issue injunctions against the federal government or its agencies, on the basis that the federal government's actions violate federal law or the US constitution?
  2. If such authority does exist, can Congress remove it by statute?
  • This is what happened in the Nullification Crisis of 1832-1833. – user662852 Nov 23 at 3:26

Federal law is argued in federal court, so state court's would never hear a federal case. Also, most of the time, the federal government itself is immune from being sued, but you can sue officials.

If a federal agency violated the U.S. Constitution within a specific state, the state can sometimes take action.

This example is probably not as definitive as you were thinking, but a subpoena from a state court would compel the federal government to turn over records or whatever was being asked for. It's not an entire lawsuit telling the federal government what to do, but the state has the power to make it's own laws under the constitution and could therefore issue subpoenas and could direct one at the federal government.

There are a few other small examples of instances like that, but any injunction of a federal action based on federal law goes to federal court always.

Congress can change the laws if it wants to, but can not change the U.S. Constitution alone.

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    An exception - Federal Tort Claims Act (August 2, 1946, ch.646, Title IV, 60 Stat. 812, "28 U.S.C. Pt.VI Ch.171" and 28 U.S.C. § 1346) ("FTCA") is a 1946 federal statute that permits private parties to sue the United States in a federal court for most torts committed by persons acting on behalf of the United States. – George White Nov 22 at 23:28
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    Federal law is not always heard in federal court; state courts are normally able to hear questions of federal law. The case could be removed to federal court if the federal court also has jurisdiction, but it does not have to be. – cpast Nov 23 at 0:24
  • “Federal law is argued in federal court, so state court’s would never hear a federal case.” There is absolutely no overstating how blatantly wrong this statement is. Amusing and shocking at the same time. – A.fm. Nov 26 at 1:18

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