Senate Leader Calls For Amendment To Limit Federal Spending

The Senate President Pro Tem David Long is seeking to cap federal spending through a U.S. constitutional amendment.

General Assembly

Photo: Dan Goldblatt/WFIU-WTIU News

David Long (left) says he will ask the legislature to consider the proposal next week.

The leader of the Indiana State Senate wants to limit federal spending through a U.S constitutional amendment.

Senate Majority Leader David Long wants to start that process on an amendment meant to impose limits on the Constitution’s Commerce Clause and federal taxing authority. He says limiting those two powers would help prevent the federal government from enacting measures like the Affordable Care Act, which he calls the poster child for federal overreaching.

“This is not some kind of conspiracy theorists all gathering together to drive the federal government out of our lives,” he says. “It is, I think, a thoughtful and constitutionally-based approach to how we can protect states’ rights.”

But Senate Minority Leader Tim Lanane says the proposal is a distraction.

“I think we ought to keep our nose to the grindstone on what people are wanting us to which is to work on ways to create jobs,” he says.

Long says he has spoken with lawmakers in other states, such as Tennessee and Texas, who say they would follow Indiana’s lead. Still, he admits the process could take years.

Brandon Smith, IPBS

Brandon Smith, IPBS has previously worked as a reporter and anchor for KBIA Radio in Columbia, MO, and at WSPY Radio in Plano, IL as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.

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