Draft Resolution Recommending Constitutional Amendment Restoring Election of U.S. Senators to the Legislatures of the Sovereign States


Originally, the U.S. Constitution provided for U.S. Senators to be selected by state legislatures however the 17th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution adopted in 1914 upended 124 years of precedent calling for direct election of U.S. Senators. This change heralded many unintended consequences including greater federal overreach and Senate campaigns that are so costly that U.S. Senators become unduly beholden to special interests. This model policy urges the U.S. Congress to propose a constitutional amendment to overturn the 17th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Draft Resolution Recommending Constitutional Amendment Restoring Election of U.S. Senators to the Legislatures of the Sovereign States

Model Policy

Whereas Article I, Section 3, Paragraph 1 of the Constitution provided for the Senators to be chosen by the Legislature of each State, and was effective for 124 years;

Whereas the 17th Amendment adopted in 1914 changed this method of choosing Senators to direct election by the people which disenfranchised the sovereign States;

Whereas the 17th Amendment has had many unintended consequences including runaway federal deficits, unfunded mandates, overreach by federal agencies and excessive and burdensome impositions by the federal government upon the States;

Be it resolved by the Legislature of the State of __________________ :

Section 1. The Legislature of the State of ________________ hereby recommends to Congress that an amendment to the Constitution be adopted that is substantially similar to the following:

Section 1. The seventeenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.

Section 2. Senators shall be elected exclusively by the State legislature, upon a majority vote of legislators present and voting in a joint session. If a vacancy shall exist for more than one hundred-eighty days, then the Governor shall appoint the Senator to serve the remainder of the vacant term. This procedure may not be modified by state initiative or referendum.

Section 3.  State legislatures may issue instructions to, or recall, their Senators at any time.

Section 4. Any Senators serving at the time this amendment becomes a valid part of the Constitution shall complete their current term of office.

Section 2. The Secretary of State is hereby directed to transmit copies of this resolution to the President and Secretary of the United States Senate, to the Speaker and Clerk of the United States House of Representatives, to the members of the Senate and House of Representatives from this State, and to the presiding officers of each of the legislative Chambers in the several States, all of the forgoing with cover letters requesting appropriate cooperation and action.


Adopted this day         of                     20