What Our Constitution Permits

Discussion in 'Politics' started by UncleJoe, Jan 11, 2011.

  1. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

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    Here is a short essay by Walter E. Williams. I don't know if this is his idea or something that was actually said in the House. I did a quick search but couldn't find anything to establish who made the statement.


    Here's the House of Representatives new rule: "A bill or joint resolution may not be introduced unless the sponsor has submitted for printing in the Congressional Record a statement citing as specifically as practicable the power or powers granted to Congress in the Constitution to enact the bill or joint resolution." Unless a congressional bill or resolution meets this requirement, it cannot be introduced.

    If the House of Representatives had the courage to follow through on this rule, their ability to spend and confer legislative favors would be virtually eliminated. Also, if the rule were to be applied to existing law, they'd wind up repealing at least two-thirds to three-quarters of congressional spending.

    You might think, for example, that there's constitutional authority for Congress to spend for highway construction and bridges. President James Madison on March 3, 1817 vetoed a public works bill saying: "Having considered the bill this day presented to me entitled 'An act to set apart and pledge certain funds for internal improvements,' and which sets apart and pledges funds 'for constructing roads and canals, and improving the navigation of water courses, in order to facilitate, promote, and give security to internal commerce among the several States, and to render more easy and less expensive the means and provisions for the common defense,' I am constrained by the insuperable difficulty I feel in reconciling the bill with the Constitution of the United States and to return it with that objection to the House of Representatives, in which it originated."

    The rest of the essay is here
     
  2. *Andi

    *Andi Supporting Member

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    interesting ... thanks for posting.