On January 8, 2016, Governor Greg Abbott of Texas joined other states for an Article V Convention of the States* “To Restore the Rule of Law.” Governor Abbott’s leadership and 100-page “Texas Plan” will be an asset to the Article V Convention of the States. The Texas plan provides nine proposed Amendments which follow:

  • Prohibit Congress from regulating activity that occurs wholly within one state.
  • Require Congress to balance its budget.
  • Prohibit administrative agencies from creating federal law.
  • Prohibit administrative agencies from pre-empting state law.
  • Allow a two-thirds majority of the states to override a U.S. Supreme Court decision.
  • Require a seven-justice super-majority vote for U.S. Supreme Court decisions that invalidate a democratically enacted law.
  • Restore the balance of power between the federal and state governments by limiting the former to the powers expressly delegated to it in the Constitution.
  • Give state officials the power to sue in federal court when federal officials overstep their bounds.
  • Allow a two-thirds majority of the states to override a federal law or regulation.

Governor Abbott wrote that these changes would force the federal government to “take the Constitution seriously again. The only true downside comes from doing nothing and allowing the federal government to continue ignoring the very document that created it.”

Three Additions Would Add Important Meaning to the Above Proposals

1. Repealing the Seventeenth Amendment that was adopted in 1913. This would return the election of the two U.S. Senators from each state to the states’ legislators directly accountable to local citizens. Instead of U.S. Senators spending a lot of time as aspirants for higher authority than being a Senator, they would be motivated to pay more attention to their home states’ concerns.

2. The purpose of the American Constitution is generalized by the Preamble. In 1787, the general welfare did not mean hierarchical authoritarianism or some form of socialism.

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare [general welfare means common needs that do NOT conflict with the development of the work ethic and personal self-reliance], and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

”The court has, on occasion, and many others insist that the Preamble contains actionable law. They were wrong. Let’s reduce the temptation with a clarifying Amendment.

3. Honesty, History, Prayer and Power—Add an Amendment to the First Amendment of the Federal Constitution a paragraph that empowers local communities nationwide to have a non-church denomination Prayer Room in their public schools that parallels the Prayer Room approved by the vote of both the House and Senate in Congress. The Capitol Prayer Room reflects the unity belief in Creation’s God and His Providence that has characterized American history.

~ D. Norris