In the United States, there is a specific procedure for making changes to its founding legal document, the Constitution.
You will need
- An amendment
- Two-thirds approval in both the U.S. House and Senate
- 3/4 of all 50 states in agreement
Step 1 Get elected Get elected to Congress or to a state legislature. The U.S. Congress or the state legislatures must vote in order to propose a constitutional amendment.
Your best bet is Congress. Even though the state legislature option is articulated in Article V of the Constitution, it has never been used.
Step 2 Get through committee Get the amendment through committee, otherwise known as the behind-the-scenes legislative wrangling that occurs before an amendment is ever presented to the full Congress.
Step 3 Win a two-thirds majority Win a two-thirds majority in both the House and Senate in favor of your amendment.
Step 4 Send it to the Archivist From Congress, the amendment is sent to the National Archivist who, with help from the Federal Register, will print and send a copy of the legislation to all 50 governors. They, in turn, pass them on to the state legislatures for a vote.
Step 5 Win a three-quarters majority Win approval from three-quarters of the states, and you have successfully amended the U.S. Constitution.
Did You Know:
The 18th Amendment prohibited the sale or manufacture of alcohol. Fourteen years later, the 21st Amendment repealed the 18th.