The Balanced Budget Amendment is not only foolish; it's a constitutional travesty.

The law, lawyers, and the court.
July 15 2011 5:22 PM

Off Balance

The Balanced Budget Amendment would make the Framers weep.

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We face a high duty when amending the Constitution: to match the Framers' maturity and foresight. By every measure that would have mattered to the Founders, Lee's proposed amendment easily flunks this test. Sen. Lee fancies himself a friend to the Constitution and an originalist. So why is he pushing for the ratification of an amendment that would take us back to the days before the Constitution was even ratified? The framers trusted in the wisdom of future legislators. The Balanced Budget Amendment represents a betrayal not only of our future but of our past as well.

Doug Kendall is president of the Constitutional Accountability Center, a think tank, law firm, and action center dedicated to the progressive promise of the Constitution's text and history.

Dahlia Lithwick writes about the courts and the law for Slate. Follow her on Twitter.