The problem is the partisan divide that appears to be widening. Individual issues are secondary.
Every peaceful solution to solving the problem points us directly to Article V. Passing an amendment initiated by Congress is not a reasonable option in today’s contentious environment. By default, the process must go through state legislators.
This has never been done. It’s a complex process. Lack of complete understanding by the legislators is challenge. Each of the over 7,000 legislators must have a good grasp of the challenge. And each legislator must understand how and why their actions will reduce the partisan divide.
A balanced budget amendment may improve our financial long-term security but may not be a major factor in improving our current political climate. Think about it. Of all the contentious comments and conversations in the most recent election cycle, what percentage involved balancing the budget?
It is not fair to expect each state legislator to independently do a full investigation of the problem. There is no history lesson to follow and their primary concern is issues that affect the state, not the federal government. The state legislator may be viewed as the average college student or the average businessman. They need a clear set of guidelines and an opportunity to make an informed decision in a reasonable time frame so that they can move on to other issues.
The quickest and easiest solution may be a bundle of constitutional amendments that is most likely to reduce the partisan divide. What are the root problems of the arguments that we have been having and how can we make changes to put out those fires?
The lawmaker’s creed was indirectly derived from the Declaration of Independence. I can be used as a guideline for all lawmakers. ‘Maximize the efficiency of the economic engine that drives our economy while simultaneously maximizing the satisfaction of the constituents’. As we examine the myriad of possible amendments we find that most would not have direct economic effect. We are fighting over our divergent passions and political power plays. Absent and economic impact we should make laws that increase our level of overall satisfaction. Certainly, someone’s ox may be gored but overall satisfaction should be the goal.
State legislators need a set of parameters and a suggested group of amendments. This will make their task easier and efficient. Give them a goal and a path to get there. We have a path.
An outline of proposed constitutional amendments provided by a gathering of minds may provide grease to that path. It’s time to get started.