National Debt Relief Amendment now awaits final approval in Senate

BATON ROUGE, La. – Without a single opponent, Louisiana’s House of Representatives has endorsed the NationalDebtReliefAmendment and its call for a state-initiated amendment to the United States Constitution.

Shortly after 2pm, representatives voted 73 to 0 in favor of HCR 87, which now heads to the State Senate for final approval. The resolution is a direct call to Congress for a specified amendments convention and is not subject to gubernatorial approval.

Model legislation of the AmericanLegislativeExchangeCouncil and promoted by RestoringFreedom.Org, the proposed amendment reads:

“An increase in the federal debt requires approval from a majority of the legislatures of the separate States.”

Noble Ellington (R-Winnsboro) is ALEC’s chairman and sponsored Louisiana’s resolution. At this stage he does not see any opposition in the Senate, and passage there would make Louisiana just the second state to do so, after North Dakota.

The sponsor in North Dakota, State Senator Curtis Olafson (R-Edinburg), is also the initiative’s national spokesman and earlier testified before Louisiana’s Committee on House and Governmental Affairs. He is delighted with the outcome, as an acknowledgement that the federal debt is a serious problem in need of address. He also says it will have a big impact as he moves forward with his efforts to have other states adopt it.

James Booth, president of RestoringFreedom.Org, says the unopposed passage confirms that federal debt is not a partisan issue.

“It is an American issue, and Americans are united in their determination to solve the challenges facing America… Representative Ellington has shown tremendous leadership and a commitment to decisive action on behalf of all Americans by sponsoring the NDRA…”

He echoes Olafson sentiment too, that this builds momentum, and he notes Michigan and Pennsylvania as next in line to pass it.

ALEC’s national convention is set to be in New Orleans this August, and RestoringFreedom.Org will have a booth at the trade show to further educate legislators on the issue. ALEC is the nation’s largest nonpartisan, individual membership association of state legislators with nearly 2,000 members, one third of the total.

Click here for a Pelican Post poll where you can voice your support or opposition to the National Debt Relief Amendment initiative.

Fergus Hodgson is the capitol bureau reporter with the Pelican Institute for Public Policy and editor of The Pelican Post. He can be contacted at, and one can follow him on twitter.