AUSTIN, Texas -- Curbing overreach by the federal government is one of Gov. Greg Abbott's emergency items this session.
This week, Texas lawmakers are set to hear a Senate bill that aims to do just that. The governor is calling for a convention of states to amend the U.S. Constitution to do it.
"This is an opportunity to take a tool that the founders gave us to be able to let the states do frankly, what Washington refuses to do,” said Chip Roy, director for 10th Amendment Action.
Chip Roy with the Texas Public Policy Foundation said an Article 5 Convention of States would help reshape the balance between Washington and Texas.
"If you talk about term limits, that's something that polls at 80 percent popularity among the people, to say that we need to limit the terms of judges or Congress that refuse to do what the people want, or spending restraint when you have $20 trillion of debt," said Roy.
In the history of the Republic, the Constitution has never been amended in this way. That in itself has some groups concerned.
"The issues people are trying to pursue, I think are worthy of debate. Things like a balanced budget amendment or trying to get big money out of politics. But an Article V Convention is just the worst possible mechanism to do it," said Anthony Gutierrez, executive director of Common Cause Texas.
Gutierrez said it could lead to what he calls a "constitutional crisis."
"There just aren't enough rules for how this process would work and we'd just be begging for the process to go into crisis both in the courts and in the states," he said.
But even if state lawmakers send this legislation to Governor Abbott's desk. It takes 34 state legislatures to apply for a convention for it to happen.
"It's going to be a march over the next two, four, six years to get there," said Roy.
So those who support giving more power to the states know it won't happen overnight.