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Constitutional Reform
April 21, 2017
Kansas Calls for Regulation Reform Amendment Convention
The Kansas Legislature officially approved a resolution calling for a national convention to draft and enact checks on federal agencies’ authority to create costly regulations without lawmakers’ approval.
Constitutional Reform
April 20, 2017
Scalia Probably Favored An Amendment Convention — But Does It Matter?
Was Scalia inconsistent? Did he change his mind after he became part of the government?
Constitutional Reform
April 19, 2017
Arizona Calls First National Convention of States in 150 Years
Reasserting states rights.
More News
Constitutional Reform
April 3, 2017
By Messing With The Election Results, The Left Is Risking Economic Collapse
The market has boomed thanks to confidence in a stable presidency. Illegitimate attempts to destabilize the office can lead to collapse.
Health Care
March 6, 2017
States Prepare Dry Run of Article V Convention
The planning convention in Nashville, Tennessee would pave the way for an amendments convention called under Article V of the U.S. Constitution.
Constitutional Reform
March 2, 2017
Utah Senate Rejects Lawmaker’s Call for Amendment Resolution
Lawmakers in the Utah Senate rejected a lawmaker’s resolution calling for a national convention to draft and enact a balanced budget amendment prohibiting the federal government from spending more money than is taken from taxpayers.

America is facing a constitutional crisis.

Limits on the size and power of the national government intended by the Founding Fathers and placed in the Constitution have been violated repeatedly and with devastating consequences. The national government has grown to the point that it is now a clear and present danger to American life, liberty, and happiness.

The national debt currently stands at nearly $19 trillion and will surpass $20 trillion in 2017. National entitlement programs are all on paths to bankruptcy, some as soon as this year. Many states and cities face their own impending financial cliffs. Government debt is a “ticking time bomb” that threatens to destroy people’s savings, the economy, and America’s leadership in the world. The regulatory state is similarly out of control.

The U.S. Supreme Court and Congress are unable or unwilling to protect the Constitution from these assaults.

The strategy of confronting Leviathan issue-by-issue or program-by-program has produced many successes, but it has failed spectacularly to rein in total national government spending, borrowing, and regulating. While we rightly celebrate victories at the state level or blocking one or two national programs and repealing one or two regulations, countless other programs expand and regulations get enacted. We win some battles but we are clearly losing the war.

The root of the problem lies in the Constitution itself, a magnificent document without any doubt, “the most wonderful work ever struck off at a given time by the brain and purpose of man,” as William Gladstone wrote in 1878. But it is a document not immune to the contrivances of generations of men and women set on finding ways to evade its restrictions on their power, prestige, and access to the wealth of others. As Thomas Jefferson warned, “the natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground.”

The system created by the Founders to rein in the national government is now broken. The national government has unlimited power to tax, regulate, and borrow. The courts have failed to interpret and enforce key provisions of the Constitution that limit the powers of Congress and the executive branch. State governments have become addicted to “revenue sharing,” losing their independence and hence their ability to check the growth of the national government.

Repealing past amendments and convincing future Supreme Court justices to defend the written Constitution may not be possible, but other constitutional reforms can help repair the damage they have done. Until the damage is fixed, conservatives and libertarians will continue to win battles and lose the bigger war for freedom.

Four Roads to Constitutional Reform

Group of people meeting in a convention
Article V of the Constitution provides a way to propose and enact amendments to the Constitution of the United States. An Article V convention can be convened if two-thirds of the states (34 state legislatures) apply for a convention and then Congress calls it.
Erasing a chalkboard
Passing amendments through Congress is the primary method of amending the Constitution. Numerous constitutional amendments are introduced each legislative session in Congress and across the nation, according to the Library of Congress.
Raised hand displaying No
Nullification ultimately depends on military power for its force. Like other revolutionary methods, it is effective only if federal authorities do not have the will or power to overcome state resistance.
Men shaking hands in agreement
Interstate compacts are agreements between two or more states on a particular policy issue. States have entered into compacts to settle a variety of public policy issues throughout our nation’s history.


Title: WOMEN IN POLITICS: The 2016 Election
Description: Join us for The Heartland Institute’s second Women in Politics Event just days before the election in our Andrew Breitbart Freedom Center. Confirmed speakers include: Illinois Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti, Illinois state Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno, Illinois State Rep. Patti Bellock, Wisconsin State Rep. Samantha Kerkman, Illinois State House Candidate Dawn Abernathy, and Kathleen Murphy of the Illinois Opportunity Project.


Constitutional Reform Experts Team

The Heartland Institute's experts on constitutional reform are available for legislative testimony, speaking engagements, and media interviews.

Heartland Staff Policy Experts