North Carolina may join a national conservative movement seeking to change the U.S. Constitution.
The state Senate on Wednesday passed a resolution calling for a convention of the states to propose constitutional amendments.
There hasn’t been a constitutional convention since the first one in 1787. If two-thirds of the states call for a convention, Congress has to call the meeting. Proposed amendments would have to be ratified by 38 states before they become part of the Constitution.
Attempts to get 34 states to apply for a convention have been active for years. Supporters say they want more limits on the federal government.
The resolution passed 29-20 and goes to the House for consideration.
Sen. Norm Sanderson, an Arapahoe Republican, said the federal government is out of control, and it’s up to the states to contain it.
He said 10 states have passed resolutions calling for a convention.
Sanderson said he participated in a mock convention that came up with amendments for a balanced budget, for term limits for Congress and judges, and for states to be able to reverse a U.S. Supreme Court decision if 75 percent decide to overturn it.
“Do we as the state legislature feel like its the duty of the state to stand as the last line of defense from an overreaching federal government?” Sanderson asked.
Sen. Floyd McKissick, a Durham Democrat, cautioned against applying for a convention that could put people’s rights in jeopardy.
“I’m concerned where we start holding a constitutional convention when everything is up for grabs,” he said. “This has fundamental and far-reaching implications that we should not take lightly.”