Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To make null; invalidate.
  • transitive v. To counteract the force or effectiveness of.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. to make legally invalid.
  • v. to prevent from happening

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To make void; to render invalid; to deprive of legal force or efficacy.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To annul; make void; render invalid; deprive of force or efficacy.
  • Synonyms Annul, Annihilate, etc. See neutralize.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. show to be invalid
  • v. declare invalid
  • v. make ineffective by counterbalancing the effect of

Etymologies

Latin nūllificāre, to despise : nūllus, none; see ne in Indo-European roots + -ficāre, -fy.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
null +‎ -ify. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Curb asks a judge to force McGraw to turn in new material for a fifth album, bar him from signing with another label and nullify a 2001 agreement that eliminated a sixth record from McGraw's contract.

    The Seattle Times

  • At the tea parties, in the attempts by states including Virginia to "nullify" health care, and in parts of the originalism jurisprudence of conservatives on the Roberts Court, there is strong sense of nostalgia for the unamended Constitution and the ideas of our founding, even when those ideas have been repudiated by subsequent constitutional history and overruled or limited by constitutional Amendments.

    Doug Kendall: Thurgood Marshall, Elena Kagan, and Our Constitution Today

  • But while such efforts serve as healthy political protest, federal laws that are constitutional are supreme under the 10th Amendment, and states can't "nullify" a Congressional action.

    ObamaCare and the Constitution

  • The Repeal Amendment should not be confused with the power to "nullify" unconstitutional laws possessed by federal courts.

    The Case for a 'Repeal Amendment'

  • Yet the distinction between this position, and the belief that states can "nullify" federal laws or even secede, seems unclear to many of the resolutions 'backers, as Perry's comments about secession demonstrated.

    Matt Sledge: Palin and Perry Skirt Secession

  • Edward Lazarus, a Los Angeles lawyer and former federal prosecutor, has drawn a comparison between the state sovereignty resolutions and the Nullification Crisis of 1832-33, when South Carolina claimed the right to "nullify" unconstitutional federal law.

    Matt Sledge: Palin and Perry Skirt Secession

  • Most people consider it as much an anachronism as the Third Amendment (which deals with "quartering troops"), but with the conservative bent of the current Supreme Court, who knows how they would rule on a state which decided to "nullify" a federal healthcare system?

    Chris Weigant: Emerging GOP Theme: Nullification

  • There is, however, no alternative psg on the topic of homosexuality that would serve to "nullify", as you put it, the condemnation of homosexuality in 1 Cor 6, Romans 1, etc.

    Quote of the Day (Eric Reitan)

  • We must not allow the uncontested primaries in Florida and Michigan to "nullify" the will of the large mass of voters in all of the hotly-contested primaries and caucuses around the country where the candidates did campaign and the voters had the chance to meet the candidates, ask questions, hear their message and make an informed decision on who would be the best nominee for the Democratic Party.

    Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.: Primary Concern: Florida and Michigan

  • Six years later, NASA hopes to launch the Terrestrial Planet Finder, which will have instruments, still being developed, that can electronically "nullify" the light coming from a star, making it possible for the first time to directly view the reflected light of an orbiting planet.

    Dawn Of A New Solar System

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