BRAC-Style Commission Will Recommend Measures Sending Power Back to the States and the People
WASHINGTON, DC – Dr. Neal Dunn (FL-02) introduced the “10th Amendment Restoration Act of 2017,” legislation to give more power back to the states and reduce the size of the federal government. The bill establishes a Constitutional Government Review Commission to review federal laws, agencies and programs to determine what functions should be returned to the states, per the 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
The Tenth Amendment reads: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
“The Constitution guarantees our liberty, and its defense requires constant vigilance,” Dr. Dunn said. “In Federalist 45, Madison wrote that the federal government’s powers are ‘few and defined’ but the states’ are ‘numerous and indefinite.’ That principle was enshrined in the 10th Amendment. Yet over the generations, Congresses and Administrations have crossed that line so often that it has almost worn away. I came to Congress to make that line bright again.”
“I am proud to support Dr. Dunn’s 10th Amendment Restoration Act. For far too long our federal Government has been allowed to grow bigger that what our Founding Fathers intended. This bill will enable us to trim down the size of the federal government and place that power in the hands of the individual states where it belongs,” Rep. Ted Yoho said.
Modeled after the Base Realignment and Closure Commission process, the Constitutional Government Review Commission is charged with producing recommendations for returning to the states the powers that are definitively delegated to the states by the U.S. Constitution. The commission must also recommend ways to return to states and tribes the savings produced by shrinking the size and scope of the federal government. The bill provides for the Commission’s recommendations to be considered by the Congress under expedited floor procedures.
The Commission is composed of nine members serving five-year terms who are appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. Eligible candidates must be learned in the U.S. Constitution and the enumerated powers it specifically delegates to the federal government.
“Restoring power to the states and shrinking the size and scope of the federal government is key to remaining true to the vision laid out by our founders,” added Dr. Dunn.
The legislation builds on President Trump’s Executive Order on a Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing the Executive Branch, which directs the Office of Management and Budget to develop a plan that considers “whether some or all of the functions of an agency, a component, or a program are appropriate for the Federal Government or would be better left to State or local governments or to the private sector through free enterprise.”
“Big government doesn’t work,” Dr. Dunn said. “From government run health care to overreach in our local schools – hardworking Americans are struggling to keep up. It’s time to give power back to the states and this legislation does just that.”