An Update on Missing Article V Applications –
by Stuart MacPhail, October 2019
The past few editions of this newsletter have highlighted various state-approved Article V convention applications that were never properly received by Congress. There has been progress.
Constitutional amendment expert Gregory Watson reports that Tennessee’s 2014 House Joint Resolution No. 548 (for a BBA-focused convention) was belatedly received by the US Senate, as reflected on page S5406 of the September 10, 2019 Senate portion of the Congressional Record. On September 11 Mississippi’s 2019 Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 596 (a CoSP [Convention of States Project] convention application) was formally received by both the US House and Senate. Then on September 19 Arkansas’ 2019 Senate Joint Resolution (another CoSP application) was officially filed with both houses of Congress.
Mr. Watson points out that the following BBA-focused Article V applications have yet to be fully and properly filed with Congress: Nebraska’s 2010 Legislative Resolution No. 538 has not been formally received by either the US House or Senate. Both Utah’s 2015 House Joint Resolution No. 7 and Wyoming’s 2017 House Enrolled Joint Resolution No. 2, while filed with the US House, have yet to be formally received by the US Senate.
Likewise, the following Article V applications related to the CoSP effort have yet to be fully/properly filed with Congress: Louisiana’s 2016 Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 52, while filed with the US House, has still not been formally received by the US Senate. Utah’s 2019 Senate Joint Resolution No. 9 has been filed with the US House, but still has not been formally received by the US Senate.
Gaining approval of Article V state applications is such a time-consuming process, it would be sad to see all that work go to waste by failure to properly and fully notify both houses of Congress of that state action.
When drafting Article V applications, the drafters need to carefully include directions as to who (what state official) is responsible for transmitting the approved version of the resolution to both houses of Congress.
In an effort to assist state legislatures and state officials who are tasked with notifying Congress of a jointly-approved Article V application, the State Legislators’ Article V Caucus has prepared a five-page guide entitled “The Proper Way to Transmit State-Approved Article V Applications to Congress”. It can be found HERE.