2 AL state senators push for Constitutional amendment on fed. ba - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

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2 AL state senators push for Constitutional amendment on fed. balanced budget

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Lawmakers detail legislation regarding a possible Constitutional Convention. Lawmakers detail legislation regarding a possible Constitutional Convention.
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

Two state senators from Alabama who believe the federal government's spending is out of control are pushing for legislation that would create guidelines for amending the U.S. Constitution through an amendment convention.

To date, every amendment to the U.S. Constitution has been proposed by Congress. But 20 states, including Alabama, have petitioned Congress to call a state-led convention on a balanced budget amendment to put controls on federal spending.

Republican senators Arthur Orr (Decatur) and Trip Pittman (Montrose) are sponsoring two bills to set parameters on delegates to an amendment convention in the event one is ever called to change the Constitution.

Pittman's bill, Senate Bill 199, "is designed to hold potential delegates accountable by requiring the Legislature to adopt instructions for delegates, in addition to providing that a vote by a delegate outside the scope of the Legislature's instructions is void," the senator's office said in a statement.

Orr's bill, Senate Bill 200, "establishes qualifications for delegates and gives the Legislature the authority to appoint and recall delegates," his office said.

The resolution would have to pass in 34 other states before a convention of the states would be approved. Right now support is at 20, but Orr and Pittman say they're working with lawmakers in other states.

Article V of the Constitution allows for an amendment convention to be convened if two-thirds of state legislatures, currently 34 states, approve an application for the convention to occur. Proposed amendments would then have to be ratified by three-fourths, or 38 states.

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