House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) recently told fellow Republicans that they should utilize Congress’ August recess to sell their constituents on a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.
The amendment would require the government to spend only as much money as it collects, and would need to be approved by two-thirds of both the House and Senate and ratified by three-quarters of the states. The New York Times reports that Republican leaders have been pointing to the fact that a similar measure passed through the House and fell just one vote short in the Senate in 1995.
“I think it is definitely achievable,” Representative Robert W. Goodlatte (R-Va.) told the newspaper. “I have been talking to dozens of Democrats in the House about this, and there is a tremendous amount of interest in the issue.”
The Times reports that under the recently approved debt ceiling deal, either debt reduction recommendations by the Congressional “super committee” will have to be implemented or the balanced budget amendment would need to pass Congress for the debt ceiling to be raised an additional $1.5 trillion.