Publius Huldah: Balanced Budget Amendments (BBA) Gut Our Constitution And Don’t Reduce Spending


Q: Doesn't our Constitution already provide for controlling federal spending?

A: Yes. It lists the purposes for which Congress may spend money. Spending is limited by the "enumerated powers" listed in the Constitution:

  • If it's on the list of powers delegated to Congress or the President, Congress may lawfully appropriate funds for it. Read the Constitution and highlight the delegated powers – then you will know what Congress may lawfully spend money on.
  • If it's not listed, Congress may not lawfully spend money on it.

Q: What is the connection between the Oath of office (Art. VI, cl. 3) and federal spending?

A: All federal and State officials take an Oath to support the federal Constitution. The Constitution lists what Congress may lawfully spend money on. When people in Congress spend money on objects not listed in the Constitution; and when State officials accept federal funds for objects not listed (race to the top, common core, etc.) they violate their Oath to support the Constitution.

Q: Are the federal departments of Education, Agriculture, Labor, Energy, Housing & Urban Development, Health & Human Services, DHS, etc., etc., constitutional?

A: No!

  • Power over education, agriculture, labor relations, energy, etc., etc., was NOWHERE in the Constitution delegated to the federal government. Those powers were reserved by the States or the People.
  • DHS – a national police force under the President's control – is becoming our version of the East German STASI. Yet the States colluded with the feds in nationalizing law enforcement because they wanted the federal funds and military equipment.

Q: How did we get a national debt of over $17 trillion, plus trillions more in unfunded liabilities?

federal spending

A: Congress spent on objects for which it has no constitutional authority, such as teaching Chinese prostitutes how to drink responsibly, bailouts of private businesses, welfare handouts, farming programs, education schemes, and grants paid to States to bribe them into implementing unconstitutional federal programs. It was the unconstitutional spending which gave us this crushing debt.

Q: The 10th Amendment says all powers not delegated to the federal government by the Constitution are reserved to the States or to the People. What happened to these reserved powers?

A: The States sold them to the federal government. The States have become administrative subdivisions of the federal government, and their aim is to siphon as much money as possible from the federal government.

Q: What should we do about the unconstitutional spending?

A: We must eliminate pork. We must systematically dismantle unconstitutional federal departments & agencies. Except that the Department of Education should be shut down, and its bureaucrats sent home, by this Friday at 5:00 p.m. All these functions must be restored to The States or The People.

Why Balanced Budget Amendmentss Are Destructive

The Black section is the unconstitutional social program spending.

The Black section is the unconstitutional social program spending.

Q: Why won't a Balanced Budget Amendment fix our debt problem?

A: They don't address the cause of the problem: Congress spends where they have no constitutional authority to spend. The Balanced Budget Amendments don't eliminate the unconstitutional spending; and they place no limits on the amount of the unconstitutional spending.

Q: Is a Balanced Budget Amendment harmful?

A: Yes. All versions of the Balanced Budget Amendment legalize spending which is now illegal and unconstitutional as outside the scope of powers delegated to Congress or the President.

Q: Would a Balanced Budget Amendment fundamentally transform our Constitution?

A: Yes. All versions of the Balanced Budget Amendment amend out the enumerated powers limitations on the federal government and transform the federal government into one of general & unlimited powers where the feds may spend money on whatever they want as long as they don't exceed the spending limits "imposed" by the Balanced Budget Amendment.

Q: So a Balanced Budget Amendment changes the constitutional criterion for spending?

A: Yes! All versions of the Balanced Budget Amendment change the criterion from:

  • WHAT Congress spends money on (it must be an enumerated power), to
  • A LIMIT on total spending where Congress can spend money on whatever they want.

Q: How are spending limits in the various versions of the Balanced Budget Amendment set?

A:

  • by the amount they take from us in taxes, or
  • by a certain percentage of the GDP, or
  • by the additional amounts they borrow to finance their spending.

Q: Can these limits on spending be raised?

A: Yes! In most versions of the Balanced Budget Amendment, Congress can vote to raise the spending limit (just as they vote every few months to raise the debt limit). In the version of the Balanced Budget Amendment by Nick Dranias and Compact for America, Congress and at least 26 States can vote at any time to raise the spending limit.

Not only do the Balanced Budget Amendment s fail to address the cause of the problem (Congress spends on unconstitutional objects); none of them limit the amount of Congress' spending because the spending limits can be raised whenever they want to raise them.

So! Just as Congress votes every few months to raise the debt ceiling; they can vote whenever they want to raise the spending limit.

Q: What about Mark Levin's amendment "to limit federal spending" (page 73 of his book)?

A: Levin's amendment makes lawful the spending which is now unconstitutional. And his amendment does nothing to control spending:

  • Levin substitutes a "budget" [which permits spending on whatever people in the federal government want] 1 for the enumerated powers listed in the Constitution; and,
  • While it pretends to limit spending to income, it actually permits Congress to suspend the spending limit and to continue to raise the national debt limit.

So! Like all other Balanced Budget Amendment s, Levin's legalizes the present unconstitutional spending and does nothing to curb spending. It legalizes the status quo. And it guts our Constitution by erasing the enumerated powers limitations on spending.

Q: What about Randy Barnett's version of a Balanced Budget Amendment? [See Barnett's 8th amendment here.]

A: Randy Barnett, law professor, redefines "unbalanced budget" to mean a budget where the national debt is greater than it was the previous year. [Yes, you read that right.]

Barnett's amendment doesn't address the unconstitutional spending which caused the massive debt.

And it delegates sweeping new powers to the President to stop funding anything he doesn't want funded. E.g., it permits him to ban appropriations authorized by the Constitution, such as all funding for our military (which is authorized by Art. I, Sec. 8, clauses 11-14).

Q: What is the real purpose of all versions of the Balanced Budget Amendment?

A: The sole purpose is to remove the enumerated powers limitations on the federal government and give it general & unlimited powers.

Folks! You must read the texts of the proposed Balanced Budget Amendment s and see what they actually say. Do not stop with the name and just read in your own understanding of what it means to "balance a budget."

For more information on various versions of the Balanced Budget Amendment see:

Balancing the Budget? Or Adding A National Sales Tax To The Income Tax?

Why the Balanced Budget Amendment is a Hoax – and a Deadly Trap

Why the Balanced Budget Amendment is the Worst Idea Ever

Endnotes:

1 The federal government didn't have a budget until the Budget Act of 1921, which purported to grant budget making power (taxes & appropriations) to the President.

The Budget Act is unconstitutional. Article I, Sec. 8, cl. 1, delegates to Congress Power to lay and collect Taxes; and Art. I, Sec. 9, next to last clause, delegates to Congress Power to make appropriations:

"No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time."

Before the Budget Act of 1921, Congress made appropriations for items listed in the Constitution as the need arose; determined the taxes, and kept records of both.

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About Publius Huldah
Lawyer, philosopher & logician. Strict constructionist of the U.S. Constitution. Passionate about The Federalist Papers (Alexander Hamilton, James Madison & John Jay), restoring constitutional government, The Bible, the writings of Ayn Rand, & the following:There is no such thing as Jew & Greek, slave & freeman, male & female, black person & white person; for we are all one person in Christ Jesus.She also writes legal and Constitutional commentary at her site: Publius-Huldah
  • http://www.examplesofglobalization.com/ Gary Anderson

    And don't forget the national freeway system. Without Eisenhour and the government, it would not have happened. Pragmatism hopefully rules this nation, although the neocons want war with Russia. Don't know how pragmatic that is.

  • http://www.examplesofglobalization.com/ Gary Anderson

    Restoring the Bible and Ayn Rand at the same time is a joke. Ayn Rand was an atheist. Also I believe in separation of church and state but have strong religious views, personally. Ayn Rand received social security in order to hold on to her fortune. While many of the departments that we have are likely not needed, helping the elderly and poor is not expressly forbidden by the constitution. In the real world, government can create jobs. Look at Hoover Dam. It would have not been created if we had held our finger in our hind quarters waiting for private enterprise to do it.

  • Nick Dranias

    Get the Facts not the Disinformation about the Compact for America BBA
    Publius Huldah's incorrect pontifications about the Balanced Budget Amendment at the heart of the Compact for America are nothing but disinformation. The same disinformation has been spread far and wide in various iterations, so here is a comprehensive response to set the record straight.
    Claim #1: Section 1 of the BBA says that the government will not overspend unless it agrees to overspend and incur debt.

    FACT #1: This is not true. With only one exception, the CFA BBA requires total federal outlays never to exceed total receipts at any point in time. The required balance between outlays and receipts is thus based on the federal government’s actual cash flow, rather than depending on budgeting estimates that can be cooked. There is only one exception to the BBA’s strict requirement of total spending never exceeding total tax receipts. Section 2 allows for the issuance of a specific aggregate amount of full faith and credit federal debt to support outlays in excess of tax receipts in the form of an initial debt limit that can only be lifted with approval from a majority of state legislatures. The CFA BBA thus channels all financing of any gap in the balance between total outlays and total receipts to a specific amount of fully transparent borrowing.

    Claim #2: Section 2 seems to legitimize all past and present borrowing, and allow even more. It increases the debt ceiling. It also tells us that a path has been prepared to continue increasing the debt ceiling and allow for deficit spending;

    Fact #2: Far from deviating from the principles of a balanced budget, the BBA incorporates the discovery that there is no way to have a truly non-gameable definition of a “balanced budget,” which requires spending never to exceed taxation, without a “debt cushion” to handle volatility and mismatches from day to day between tax revenues and spending. A
    revolving line of credit, so to speak, is the price of a definition of a balanced budget that cannot be gamed—and also allows for a transition period away from the status quo of total dependency on limitless borrowing. Although the CFA BBA does not completely prohibit the use of debt by the federal government, it does restrict it with a hard constitutional debt limit. In so doing, it finally imposes the reality of scarce resources on the federal government.

    Claim #3: Section 3 is the follow-up to Section 2. It specifies that increases of the debt ceiling will be tied to a ‘single subject’ and that a simple majority of the states will have to approve it. (How many of our states are in debt now themselves? How many states have the guts to insist that the Federal Government abide by the Constitution and insist on upholding
    the 10th Amendment by refusing federal funds for education for example? What does this do to the separation of powers between the states and the federal government?) What will those single subjects be? How about: The war on Carbon Dioxide? Obamacare? Oil spills and other environmental disasters? More Wars?

    FACT #3: The limit to single subject is part and parcel of the BBA’s explicit prohibition on quid pro quo trades of state approval of any proposed debt limit increase in exchange for new federal appropriations. Any attempt to do so could render void any approved increase in the debt limit. This will be a powerful incentive for states not to abuse their restored role
    in national debt policy to demand still more debt spending—far more of an incentive to avoid bad behavior than the states had when they controlled the U.S. Senate under the Constitution’s original design.

    Claim #4: Section 4 gives general spending power to the president. It does so by giving him power over what will not be paid.

    FACT #4: This is not true. The amendment does not give the President impoundment powers. Under current case law, the President currently has the implied power to engage in impoundments so long as he does so in response to genuine funding issues, without political retaliation or the purpose or effect of overriding appropriations. That’s why the President
    has been making impoundment threats. What this process does is regulate that power by ensuring that the President must actually lay out the plan for impoundments long in advance of any crisis so that Congress can respond to specifics, not vague threats, and override those impoundments with simple majorities if they wish. This is more responsibility for the President, not more power. And it ensures that the buck stops at the President’s desk for
    enforcing the debt limit. Here’s how it would work: The BBA would require the President to start designating spending impoundments when spending exceeds 98% of the debt limit (section 4). Congress must then override those impoundments with a simple majority vote within 30 days with alternatives if they disagree.

    This allows for the planned delay of spending to enforce the debt limit at least 6 months before the debt limit is reached (at current spending and borrowing “burn” rates). If the President does not designate impoundments, and if majorities of Congress and the State legislatures do not approve an increase in the federal debt limit or new revenues, spending will be limited to taxes when the debt limit kicks in (section 1), requiring an across-the-board
    sequester for which the President could be impeached (section 4). We think the threat of impeachment would be a powerful incentive for the President to enforce the impoundment process because of what would happen under the Amendment if he did not. If the President did not impound spending in excess of the debt limit when he was required to do so, and if Congress did not repeal the underlying appropriations, that would mean that when the available credit was exhausted, all spending would be limited to incoming tax receipts. Because we are borrowing nearly 45 cents on every dollar spent, that would mean that
    the President’s failure to utilize the transparent, orderly impoundment process would result in massive sequester or chaotic on-the-fly impoundments because of the lack of adequate money to pay appropriations. We think that such irresponsibility by the President would be punished by Congress through the impeachment process because otherwise the blame would fall on Congress for excessively appropriating in the first place. Thus, to ensure the buck remained with the President, Congress would have a powerful political incentive to
    impeach the President. Notice that the President’s failure to enforce his impeachment obligation would be known by all several months before the debt limit was hit. This would give Congress plenty of time to initiate impeachment proceedings, if they so wished, before the debt limit was reached. The charges, of course, could be withdrawn if the tough choices on fixing the deficit were made, and while the threat of impeachment existed, it would provide a clarifying framework for the President in any budget negotiations.

    Claim #5: Section 5 will destroy the middle class in America through higher taxes in two ways: raising income tax rates with a 2/3 vote OR with a simple majority vote Eliminating Tax Exemptions, Deductions, And Credits! If Congress is too “chicken” to do that, it can replace the income tax with a national sales tax, using a simple majority vote.

    FACT #5: This is not true. The middle class is FAR safer from excessive taxation under the BBA than without. Under the BBA, any deficit could be closed with new or increased taxes, but not without supermajority (2/3rds) approval of the whole number of each House of Congress, unless the new revenues were to be generated from: (a) completely replacing all income taxes with an end-user (non-VAT) sales tax; (b) the closure of tax credits, deductions and exemptions; or (c) an increase in tariffs and fees (section 5). While new revenues though these exceptions would certainly be possible with simple majority approval of each House of Congress (the same hurdle required right now), the debate would be driven through narrow channels where special interest push-back would tend to be most intense, and where the outcome of any successful drive for new revenues would tend to result in a flatter income tax, or a fairer, more voluntary, more consumption-based tax system. In other words, the BBA would powerfully incentivize spending reductions or better tax policy as the primary means of closing a deficit.

    Claim #6: Section 6 gives a very narrow definition of debt. How about other kinds of financing? Can the government do sale/leasebacks of government buildings or national parks and not call it debt?

    FACT #6: This claim fails to understand that the very narrow definition of debt is by design—to ensure that borrowing is only through transparent, ordinary bonding rather than any exotic devices. In fact, to prevent gamesmanship using leases and other tricks, the BBA stops the federal government from spending money that arises from such tricks by narrowly defining total receipts (to which spending is limited) to exclude proceeds from the incurrence of debt and all types of liability. This means that federal spending cannot be funded by floating short-term obligations (like the IOUs and warrants recently used by California or Illinois), delaying payment of amounts due (called “rollovers”), or by merely printing or minting money (like the proposed $1 trillion coin). Nor can federal spending be supported by raiding trust funds, such as the Social Security trust fund. This is because these tactics all involve efforts to support outlays with proceeds from the incurrence of debt or liabilities and, therefore, they would be excluded from the BBA’s definition of “total receipts” to which total federal outlays would be restricted.

    The bottom line is that the Compact for America is a powerful and safe vehicle for a Balanced Budget Amendment. It deserves your support.

  • Nick Dranias

    All of the Founders represented that the Article V convention could be limited to whatever the States desired. This makes perfect sense if you take the Tenth Amendment seriously. The States retain all of the traditional powers they had prior to the Constitution unless those powers were delegated away or they were prohibited from exercising them. The States organized and targeted conventions to specific and limited topics repeatedly prior to the Constitution. The fact that Article V does not address, much less disable, the States’ power to organize and target a convention for proposing amendments means, under the Tenth Amendment, that the States retain full traditional power to limit the convention as they see fit.

    Here’s what the Chairman of the Philadelphia Convention and first President of the United States of America, George Washington, said about Article V: “It should be remembered that a constitutional door is open for such amendments as shall be thought necessary by nine States.”

    George Washington did not tell a lie.

    In Federalist No. 43, James Madison emphasized that Article V ”equally enables the general and the State governments to originate the amendment of errors, as they may be pointed out by the experience on one side, or on the other.”

    James Madison did not tell a lie.

    On June 6, 1788, Patrick Henry raged against ratification at the Virginia convention, spending a huge chunk of his argument asserting that the state origination of amendments under Article V was completely unworkable and unwieldy. In response, leading Federalist and advocate of ratification, George Nicholas, observed that state legislatures may apply for an Article V convention confined to a “few points;” and that “it is natural to conclude that those States who will apply for calling the Convention, will concur in the ratification of the proposed amendments.”

    Later, this public understanding of Article V was further confirmed by the last of the Federalist Papers, Federalist No. 85, in which Alexander Hamilton concluded, “We may safely rely on the disposition of the State legislatures to erect barriers against the encroachments of the national authority” by using their amendment power under Article V.

    That was not just pillow talk.

    On February 7, 1799, James Madison’s Report on the Virginia Resolutions observed that the states could organize an Article V convention for the “object” of declaring the Alien and Sedition Acts unconstitutional. Specifically, after highlighting that “Legislatures of the States have a right also to originate amendments to the Constitution, by a concurrence of two-thirds of the whole number, in applications to Congress for the purpose,” Madison wrote both that the states could …ask their senators to propose an “explanatory amendment” clarifying that the Alien and Sedition Acts were unconstitutional, and also that two-thirds of the Legislatures of the states “might, by an application to Congress, have obtained a Convention for the same object.”

    James Madison was not smoking something.

    There is simply no reasonable dispute over the fact that the Founders believed and, more importantly, promised posterity that Article V could be laser-targeted by the States to the constitutional amendments they desired.

  • Steven

    Regardless of the defects listed in the article, a balanced budget amendment CAN'T address the issue of spending vs revenue. If an amendment were made that did NOTHING but require spending be limited to revenue, in practice, it would be used to argue that tax increases were REQUIRED by the Constitution.

  • washbear

    I love this question-answer format. It gets right to the point. Great educational aid. Thanks, Publius!

  • PT

    U.S. Constitution Article 1 Section 8 First sentence.... Congress shall have the power to... provide for the general welfare of the United States. That one clause, to provide for the general welfare, is the constitutional authority to create a Department of Education, Agriculture etc. The third branch of government, the judicial branch, has supported that interpretation of the constitution. So your argument falls apart on constitutional grounds. Now if we amend the constitution and delete the "general welfare clause" then maybe we could make some headway in eliminating components of big government.

    • Guest

      You are using today's meaning for general welfare instead of what it meant in the late 1700's. Just like the meaning of gay has changed in my lifetime.

    • Patriotsam

      Publius Huldah explains the General Welfare statement you are talking about in point 8 of the following paper.

      8. “Well”, you ask, “what about ‘the general welfare clause’?
      Doesn’t that give Congress power to pass any law on any subject as long
      as it is for the ‘general Welfare of the United States’ “? NO, IT DOES NOT!

      First, you must learn what “welfare” meant when the
      Constitution was ratified: “Welfare” as used in the Preamble & in
      Art. 1, §8, cl. 1, U.S. Constitution, meant

      “Exemption from any unusual evil or calamity; the
      enjoyment of peace and prosperity, or the ordinary blessings of society
      and civil government” (Webster’s, 1828).

      Here is the link to the entire paper and it would explain a lot of truth about the Constitution to you.

      https://publiushuldah.wordpress.com/2009/09/08/congress-enumerated-powers/

  • John Patriot

    The president as well as most sitting and aspiring lawmakers on both sides, both federal and state have more faces than naccy rottencrotch peloci. They all have one thing in commom; "Tell them what they want to hear and only let them hear what they want it to be". Truth, the constitution, morality, Christianity, patriotism, liberty and justice all went to the wayside through 100 years of progressive communist indoctrination and criminal acts. So who should we trust to make any changes to the constitution? I wouldn't dare say! But of the two people for and against constitutional changes, Mark Levin and Publius Huldah, I trust the words of Publius.

  • PATRIOT.WW48

    P.S. 16th & 17th amendents suck.

  • PATRIOT.WW48

    "I cannot under take to lay my finger on that Article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents" - James Madison. "Our Constitution was made only for a Religious & Moral people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other" - John Adams. "I have come to the conclusion that 1 useless man is a disgrace, that 2 become a law firm, and that 3 or more become o Congress" - John Adams. Publius Huldah - what does that mean in American?? You sure do make a lot of sense. thought Mark was 100% right. even the Great One is somewhat flawed. I think the only way the Constitution gets put back to it's place of Honor, and unchanged is the TREE-of-LIBERTY must be refreshed......

  • http://yahoo.com/ DustyFae

    Told you the States have legal rights to turn the FEDS down but were lining their own pockets and we are paying for it.....Our States even get big kickback on putting as many people as they can on food stamps and welfare...so where do you think that kickback is going???

  • tdupuy

    I am a big supporter of Publius Huldah and her support for State Nullification of unconstitutional federal laws and actions.
    However, I also support a Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA) that limits spending to 18-19% of the GDP and specifies that taxes cannot be raised except temporarily in cases of national emergency with a 67% majority in both chambers of Congress. This is similar to the Republican Study Committee BBA proposal of a few years ago.
    I do not see how the absence of wording in a BBA regarding spending on items not specifically delegated in the Constitution in any way would allow Congress to spend on any items not delegated by the Constitution. If somehow it does, verbiage could be added to specifically deny such an interpretation. We've had those restrictions all along and they have been ignored by Congress. That's why state nullification is so important and would continue to be even with a BBA.
    In my view we need both. The wording of such a BBA amendment would have to be carefully worded and agreed upon by a majority of the States before calling for an Article V Amendment Convention. Delegates attending the convention would have to be given strictly limited authority by their respective States to address only a BBA initiative and then only one that guarantees spending could not be raised above the % specified and taxes could not be raised without strong restrictions.

  • The Blue Tail Gadfly

    Interesting, it appears to me that the Balanced Budget Amendment is the companion piece for the 16th Amendment:

    "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from
    whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States,
    and without regard to any census or enumeration."

    The 16th Amendment made it constitutional for the federal government to tax for any purpose they so desire, and the Balanced Budget Amendment will now allow them to legally spend it on whatever they may desire.

    Though the Constitution is not being enforced, it still declares this federal government LAWLESS! The true rule of law is still on our side, but not for much longer if the Constitution is allowed to be foolishly altered.

    It should be noted that Amendments are not the only way of changing the Constitution. Verbicide is one proven method along with deteriorating the moral fabric of a society.

    http://freedomoutpost.com/2013/02/generation-brainwashed-charity-is-not-redistribution-of-wealth/

    "The American Constitution is remarkable for its simplicity; but it can only suffice a people habitually correct in their actions, and would be utterly inadequate to the wants of a different nation. Change the domestic habits of the Americans, their religious devotion, and their high respect for morality, and it will not be necessary to change a single letter in the Constitution in order to vary the whole form of their government." ~Francis Grund

    • http://batman-news.com MCBLawrence

      Dear Gadfly, You are truly a refreshing breath of intellectual acumen, common sense and scholarly research. If everyone had your intelligence there would be no need for these arguments. Truth is I had a question about the research you did on another site that I hoped you could provide some statistics for. I looked on your disqcus and unfortunately could not peruse your last comments. I seem to have misplaced that article. Perhaps you can refresh my memory on the last few articles you commented on? It was an issue that you responded to with great authority and I wanted to know more about your research, and I remember my question pertained to statistics which I'm sure your familiar with but for brevity didn't include in your comment. I look forward to hearing from you.

    • The Blue Tail Gadfly

      Hi MCBLawrence,

      Thanks for the compliments, they are much appreciated. Though I feel I should say something stupid in order to correct that characterization of me. Maybe later...

      I looked at my recent history and didn't see anything that jumped out at me. Was it related to any of these subjects: Article V Convention, NDAA, religion, political parties/candidates, worldviews?

      Not that I consider myself an authority on those but that pretty much covers all I have been talking about for the last few weeks.

      ~BTG

    • http://batman-news.com MCBLawrence

      Hi! Boy, this is driving me nuts. I can't remember if it was concerning gay rights, child rearing by gay parents? (does that ring a bell?) or maybe it was something to do with creationism or some particular aspect of religion. I wish your disqcus was not locked. I could just review your last articles. Anyway, I'm getting ready to respond to some good scholarly comments by MRitter aobut the topic of Gay Marraige and the Supreme Court. Just a hint, I believe it can be argued by the correct interpretaion of the Constitution, Scripture and HIstoric Precendent that not only does the Federal Government not have the authority, but neither do the states have the right to legislate marraige on many levels. lts going to be a long drawn out essay with many references capped off by the Supreme Doctrinal Edict infused in the Constitution by the founders that the Majority will not be subject to the Tyranny of the Minority. The other response is to the myths of Global Warming and Carbon Dioxide. The latter I've been studying for over a decade, while I just had an epiphany over the correct Theological, Moral, Ethical and Legal solution to the problem of Gay Marraige. Although I might unite those who are moderate left and right center, I'm sure there will be some at the militant extrremes that prefer conflict and hate to resolution. Will keep on the lookout for your future writings.

  • Tommyzax

    You can say what you like, but Amendments are the only way to change the Constitution. We MUST repeal 16, 17, and 26.

    Use nullification for LAWS. Use impeachment for corruption.

    Yet, we argue, and you can't even get Obama to keep the wording of his OWN DAMN LAW.

    That is not a case for refraining from using Article V. It is the REASON.

    • Bob McCormick

      While you are correct that the only way we could ever hope to change the Constitution for the better would be through a COS, the question is, what is wrong with the Constitution that so desperately needs to be fixed? In calling for repeal of the 16th 17th and 26th amendments you only reinforce Publius Hulda's point. Someone must have thought these amendments were a good idea at the time, as they were ratified. They aren't working out so well for us now, are they.
      Publius does an excellent job in explaining the problems with the proposed BB amendments, why they are bad and how following the Constitution as written would address the issue, Now that you see what the BB amendment does it is easy to see how the socialists would support it, spin it and MSM would sell it. How many voters would, as Publius said, read the words "balanced budget" and decide they were for it, without giving further thought to the matter. I fear the answer is TOO MANY !
      I have made a similar argument against the ever popular term limits amendment. How does this fix the problem? Assuming reps would be allowed to move on to the Senate, once their four years is up, all you get is a politician keeping his head down for ten years before doing what ever he can get away with in his final six so that he can secure his position at some big money firm post politics. What needs to happen is to reduce the influence of the RNC and DNC in picking and choosing lousy candidates, clean up the election process and find a way to ensure that voters have a clue what they are doing. Now I don't have an answer as to how to accomplish any of this but I do know that you won't find the answer in a COS.
      Bottom line: In this political climate, with the current mindset of the voters and the corrupted media, mucking around in the Constitution is a spectacularly bad idea and it is largely unnecessary.