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Bentivolio Announces First Bill Co-Sponsorship

The Republican congressman, who represents Novi and Northville, says the Enumerated Powers Act 'holds Congress accountable' for upholding the Constitution.

On Tuesday, Republican Congressman Kerry Bentivolio co-sponsored his first bill, the Enumerated Powers Act (H.R. 109).

Bentivolio represents Michigan's new 11th Congressional District, which includes Novi and Northville.

According to a press release, the bill requires Congress to specify the source of authority under the United States Constitution for the enactment of laws.

“I am proud that the first bill I am co-sponsoring holds Congress accountable for its highest duty of upholding the Constitution,” Bentivolio said. “I was sent to Congress to protect our rights, not take them away. If this bill is enacted, it will act as a safeguard against unconstitutional legislation.”

In 2011, the House adopted a new rule requiring that a Constitutional Authority Statement is attached to each bill or resolution in the House. The purpose was to provide the authority given to Congress to pass a law, the press release indicated.

In December 2012, the Republican Study Committee found that many members of Congress were providing incomplete statements or simply citing the preamble.

The Enumerated Powers Act, introduced by Rep. Phil Gingrey of Georgia, seeks to strengthen the Constitutional Authority Statement by requiring a concise and definite statement of authority, according to the release. Members of Congress will be able to hold their colleagues accountable for their oath to uphold the Constitution by calling for a “point of order” on inadequate or flawed statements.

The bill has been referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

Tamara January 18, 2013 at 04:01 AM
While I am glad this is being done, I have no idea why we need it. Can't these elected officials just do their job right to begin with? They are ALREADY supposed to follow the Constitution!
Herb Helzer January 23, 2013 at 09:59 PM
This would of course be a doomed-to-fail attempt to put into law the "rule" that House Republicans imposed at the beginning of 2011...only to find the vast majority of the subsequent bills and amendments simply referred to the Enumerated powers specified in Article I, Section 8 and called it good. The bill has exactly zero chance of becoming law, given that the U.S. Senate has no interest in being lectured to by the House (also, controlled by Democrats). If this is the sort of self-important puffery we can expect from Rep. Bentivolio, I weep for our District's reputation. But hey, Kerry's voted TWICE to snub the victims of Superstorm Sandy, so we have that going for us...oh, wait.

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