Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Bill of Federalism

Professor Randy Barnett, who writes at Volokh, has put together a proposal for a bill of Federalism, along the lines of the Bill of Rights, in that it contains, as it happens, 10 amendments to the U.S. constitution. It is now in final form, and you can read the text of it here, or, if you're like me and need some explanation of what's going on, you can see the same text here, but with a paragraph or two of explanation attached.

I don't entirely agree with a couple of the amendments, but what I see appears to be something I can live with. The parts about congressional term limits and budget balancing are strong selling points. For the rest, I would suggest reading the thing, and thinking like an incumbent nanny-stater, and see how you could get around any of it,because where there's a will, there will certainly be a way.

The next step is to begin bothering your state congress-critters about demanding a constitutional convention. This isn't as dangerous as it sounds, since the reaction of the Federal congress, when the vote gets to the mark, is to pass the initiative, and forget the convention.

One other thing that professor Barnett brought up is that even if a convention is held, and a ton of outlandish amendments are proposed, none of them go into effect until 3/4 of the states ratify them.

Give this a read, and consider writing your state reps.

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