On Monday, April 18, the Oklahoma House of Representatives approved by a 57–33 vote Senate Joint Resolution 4 (SJR 4), a combined application for an Article V convention. The legislation was backed by the Balanced Budget Amendment Task Force (BBATF) and Convention of States.
The application includes a call for an Article V convention for the purpose of creating a balanced budget amendment, term limits on members of Congress, and reductions in federal regulations. SJR 4 contains language asking Congress to count separately the applications backed by the BBATF and Convention of States. The proposal now goes to the Oklahoma Senate for approval.
The Balanced Budget Amendment Task Force is an organization dedicated to pursuing a single-subject Article V Convention for a balanced budget requirement to the U.S. Constitution. Convention of States is a project of Citizens for Self-Governance, an organization promoting greater citizen involvement in government. The Heartland Institute does not endorse a particular effort for an Article V convention.
The following statements from constitutional reform experts at The Heartland Institute – a free-market think tank – may be used for attribution. For more comments, refer to the contact information below. To book a Heartland guest on your program, please contact Donald Kendal, new media specialist at The Heartland Institute, at [email protected] or 312/377-4000.
“The Oklahoma House of Representatives should be applauded for taking a major step toward demanding constitutional reform for the national government of the United States. Oklahomans, along with the vast majority of Americans, want Washington to get its fiscal act together when the national debt is running at $20 trillion and counting. The Oklahoma Senate has a great opportunity in front of them to continue a strong tradition of demanding reform at all levels of government.”
“The Oklahoma House of Representatives’ approval of Senate Joint Resolution 4 is another example of lawmakers in America’s heartland doing what lawmakers in Washington, DC have proven unable or unwilling to do. Convening a convention of the states through the process laid out in Article V of the U.S. Constitution would help retake the power grabbed by Washington, DC over the centuries and put it back in the hands of the people and the states. Lawmakers in other states should look to Oklahoma as a guide for real leadership on the burgeoning federal deficit and out-of-control spending and take heed of what Oklahomans have done on this important issue.”
“The Oklahoma House did a wonderful thing by combining the efforts of the Balanced Budget Amendment Task Force and Convention of States Project into one piece of legislation. This helped to pass the application for an Article V convention of the states and sets an example for how the different movements can work in the future.”
The Heartland Institute is a 32-year-old national nonprofit organization headquartered in Arlington Heights, Illinois. Its mission is to discover, develop, and promote free-market solutions to social and economic problems. For more information, visit our website or call 312/377-4000.