HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 43
MEMORIALIZING THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES TO CALL A CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION FOR THE PURPOSE OF PROPOSING AN AMENDMENT TO THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES.
BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives and the Senate of the 128th General Assembly of the State of Delaware, with the approval of the Governor, that, pursuant to Article V of the Constitution of the United States, application is hereby made to the Congress of the United States to call a Convention for the sole and exclusive purpose of proposing to the several States a Constitutional Amendment in the following manner:
Capital punishment is not, in itself, cruel and unusual punishment. A penalty of death may be imposed by any of the several States as the penalty for a despicable crime if such crime is clearly set forth by statute and the manner in which the death penalty is imposed is not prohibited by the United States Constitution."
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this Memorial by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware constitutes a continuing application in accordance with Article V of the Constitution of the United States until at least two-thirds of the legislatures of the several States have made similar applications pursuant to Article V, but if Congress proposes an amendment to the Constitution identical with that contained in this Resolution before January 1, 1983, this application for such amendment shall no longer be continued.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that since the method of State application to the Congress for proposing amendments to the United States Constitution has never been completed to the point of calling a Convention, and since the calling of a convention in this manner is an exercise of the basic sovereign right of each State, carrying with it the power to interpret Article V as it applies to this process, the General Assembly of the State of Delaware interprets Article V to mean that if two-thirds of all States make application for a convention to propose for ratification an amendment substantially similar to that contained in this Memorial, and such applications contain a limitation that the proposed amendment be the only matter before the Convention, then such Convention shall have the power only to propose the specified amendment and would be limited to such proposal and would not have any power to vary the text thereof, nor would it have power to propose other amendments on the same or different positions.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that if the Article set forth in this Memorial, or one substantially similar to it, is adopted it shall be appended as a new section to Amendment VIII or Amendment XIV, or be included as a completely new amendment to the United States Constitution.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a duly attested copy of this Memorial be immediately transmitted by the Delaware Secretary of State to: the Secretary of the Senate of the United States, the Clerk of the House of Representatives of the United States, to each member of the Congress from this State, and to each House of each State Legislature in the United States.
Approved June 22, 1976