Convention Of The States Resolution Crushed In Wyoming House
A resolution calling for a National Convention of the States under Article V of the U.S. Constitution was overwhelmingly defeated in the Wyoming House of Representatives on Wednesday morning.
You can read House Joint Resolution 2 here. The proposal would have needed a 2/3 majority vote for introduction, or 40 members of the 60 member house.
But it was defeated by a margin of 37-21 with two members absent. 34 states would have to call for an Article 5 convention. So far 17 states have done so, with Nebraska being the most recent, having done so on Jan. 28.
Supporters of a Convention of the States say such an event is needed to restore state's rights, reign in wildly wasteful federal spending, and impose term limits on members of congress.
But opponents often worry that such as convention could result in a "runaway convention" that might deviate far from the supposed goals of such a convention. There are also questions about the effectiveness of such a convention and concerns that the process outlined under the constitution is vague and open to interpretation.
In the floor debate on the proposal on Wednesday, Rep. Dan Laursen [R-Park County] told lawmakers ''Congress has usurped the powers that rightfully belong to us, the elected lawmakers of Wyoming. The activities of Washington D.C. would have been unthinkable to our founding fathers."
He went on to say that overbearing federal law and executive orders intrude on such everyday aspects of life as what kind of light bulbs people can use, how they use their land, school curriculum, school lunches, employer mandates, and others. ''Meanwhile, we live under the shadow of a crushing national debt, over $30 trillion, that threatens to enslave our grandchildren and our children."
But Rep. Clarence Styvar [R-Laramie County], speaking against the resolution, said the Constitution only has one sentence mentioning the Convention of the States. ''There are no rules to regulate how this is going to run. Who are going to be the three delegates from our state? How are they picked? Who are they going to be? These questions need to be answered before we move forward with a Convention of the States."
Here is a breakdown of how the House members voted:
Ayes: ANDREW, BARLOW, BURKHART, EKLUND, HALLINAN, HEINER, KINNER, KNAPP, LARSEN, L, LAURSEN, D, OLSEN, OTTMAN, RODRIG-WILLIAMS, ROMERO-MARTINEZ, ROSCOE, SIMPSON, SOMMERS, SWEENEY, WILLIAMS, YIN, ZWONITZER
Nays: BAKER, BANKS, BEAR, BLACKBURN, CLAUSEN, CONNOLLY, CRAGO, DUNCAN, EYRE, FLITNER, FORTNER, GRAY, GREEAR, HAROLDSON, HARSHMAN, HENDERSON, JENNINGS, LEBEAU, MACGUIRE, NEIMAN, NEWSOME, NICHOLAS, OAKLEY, OBERMUELLER, O'HEARN, PAXTON, PROVENZA, SCHWARTZ, SHERWOOD, STITH, STYVAR, WALTERS, WASHUT, WESTERN, WHARFF, WILSON, WINTER
Excused: BROWN, BURT
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