WASHINGTON, Jan. 26 (UPI) -- A Republican congressman proposed a constitutional balanced-budget amendment that includes the hammer of presidential impeachment.
Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., offered the proposal this week, which calls for a balance budget within five years and the possibility of impeaching any president who fails to enforce the amendment.
Brooks told The Hill his Protecting America's Solvency Act contains the teeth needed to ensure the president and Congress take seriously the requirement that spending and revenues balance.
"I have learned from experience that unless there is penalty ... there is a significant risk that the executive, or for that matter the Senate or the House, won't do it," Brooks said.
Brooks said a balanced-budget law was not a particularly radical idea since many states operate under such restrictions.
He said the requirement could be suspended by Congress during wartime or if revenues fall short of projections in a particular year, but it would be incumbent on the White House to take steps to stay out of the red or put the chief executive's job at risk.