Congressional Statute — This option would involve Congress regulating itself by adopting budget reforms via a simple statute which does not have to be signed by the President. While passage can be quick, this is only a short-term fix. Any simple statute adopted by Congress in one session can be discarded in the next. This is like the fox guarding the hen house.
Amendment Proposed by Congress & Ratified by the States (Option 1) — This would require a two-thirds vote of both chambers of Congress — a bar that is so high it has never been reached despite over 50 years of attempts. Any amendment proposed using this method must then be ratified by three-quarters of the states (38/50).
Amendment Proposed and Ratified by the States — This would require the states to call a convention to propose a Balanced Budget Amendment for ratification. This requires applications or “convention calls” from two-thirds (34/50) of the state legislatures. Any amendment proposed by a convention must then be ratified by three-quarters of the states (38/50).
Amendment Proposed by Congress & Ratified by the States (Option 2) — This would require the states to strong-arm Congress into proposing a Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA) using the “threat” of a convention. This is achieved when the states reach 33 of the 34 states required to call a convention. This is what forced Congress to propose the 17th Amendment.
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Balanced Budget Now is a DBA of the Center for State-led National Debt Solutions (IRS ID: 20-3302521). Our mission is to educate state legislators, members of Congress and the general public regarding the dire state of our nation’s finances, and potential solutions which include a Balanced Budget Amendment proposed by Congress or the states via convention.