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October 24, 2007 - by Donny Shaw

In each and every Congress since 1995, John Shadegg (R-AZ) — pictured at right — has introduced the Enumerated Powers Act. It’s never made it out of the House Judiciary Committee and its list of co-sponsors has slowly faded from it’s peak of 73 in the 105th (Ron Paul, consistently the most-viewed Rep. on OpenCongress, has been a co-sponsor every year since its introduction), but its directness and Shadegg’s persistence make it anomalous and worth noticing.

It’s intended to keep Congress within the literal intent of the framers of the Constitution. It reads:

>"Each Act of Congress shall contain a concise and definite statement of the constitutional authority relied upon for the enactment of each portion of that Act. The failure to comply with this section shall give rise to a point of order in either House of Congress. The availability of this point of order does not affect any other available relief."

Congress’s 18 enumerated powers are spelled out in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution and clarified by the 10th amendment, which reads, “the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved for the States respectively, or to the people.”

Anyone know of other bills that have been introduced to Congress year after year without making any progress towards becoming law? Let us know in the comments.

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