Virginia’s House of Delegates kicked off a nationwide effort to pass a 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would restore federalism by permitting the repeal of any federal law or regulation by vote of two-thirds of state legislatures. 


House Joint Resolution 542, which was introduced by Del. James LeMunyon, R-Fairfax, and co-patroned by 51 other delegates, passed the House on a 59-34 vote Tuesday.


"Like many, I believe the Repeal Amendment will help restore the proper balance of power between the states and the federal government as contemplated by our founding fathers," House Speaker William Howell, R-Stafford, said.  


"With no constitutional requirement for a balanced federal budget, overwhelming levels of national debt, unbridled federal mandates and unconscionable deficit spending by Washington that has mortgaged the futures of current and unborn generations, it is the duty of leaders and concerned citizens to use every tool available to help restore the health and integrity of our republic."


Amending the Constitution is a cumbersome process, but other states are also contemplating similar efforts to block the increasing number of unfunded mandates imposed on them by the federal government.