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28th Amendment to the Constitution is a fallacy, Internet rumor

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(WJLA) - With anger and resentment toward Congress growing as the country remains in the throes of a government shutdown, people everywhere are finding their own way to express their frustration.

Photo: National Archives

One of the more widely shared notions on social media, in this case, is a cry for a proposed 28th Amendment to the United States Constitution.

It's not a new notion - Snopes.com indicates that a push for a 28th Amendment concerning the way Congress enforces the law on itself versus the public dates back to chain emails from 2009. In the wake of the first government shutdown since 1996, that rumor has once again popped up on Facebook and Twitter.

In many cases, the proposal reads in full:

Congress shall make no law that applies to the citizens of the United States that does not apply equally to the Senators and Representatives; and, Congress shall make no law that applies to the Senators and Representatives that does not apply equally to the citizens of the United States.

The existence of this purported amendment, of course, is a fallacy - the Constitution of the United States has 27 amendments, the last of which was enacted in 1992 and concerns Congressional salary.

Six other amendments are currently waiting in the wings as mere proposals, ranging on topics including voting rights for the District of Columbia to the regulation of child labor.

In effect, this purported rumor of a proposed 28th Amendment concerning equal lawmaking for citizens and lawmakers is a complete fallacy.

This rumor stems from such such topics as members of Congress being exempt from contributing to Social Security (they're not) and from having to participate in the Affordable Care Act (they're not).

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