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How to Stop the Buckaroo Banzai “Amending the Constitution Short-Form”

 The U.S. Constitution is clear that the Federal Government power is to be limited to certain specific enumerated powers. The idea that the general welfare or commerce clause would be used to allow Congress to engage in more than these enumerated powers was considered laughable (see Federalist 41) and yet Congress has taken upon itself to create new authority for itself by simple majority vote. Thus, the Congress amends the constitution every time it passes a law not in the enumerated powers.

This reminds me of the movie Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai. In the movie, the fictitious U.S. President is urged to attack the Soviet Union and is presented with a “declaration of War: Short Form” Since Congress is acting to amend the Constitution with every vote (the short form), the states should respond as if they had legitimately requested an amendment to the Constitution. It takes 2/3 of the state legislatures to ratify a change to the constitution so 34 state legislatures must agree. If 17 state legislatures oppose, the Constitutional amendment fails.

The 17 State Solution

Therefore, anytime Congress oversteps its enumerated powers, 17 state legislatures should vote on a resolution stating: “Congress with Bill _________ is attempting to use powers not granted to it by the U.S. Constitution. As the duly elected representatives of the state of _________, we reject the proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution.”

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