Promising to hold a congressional vote on a poorly designed version of a Balanced Budget Amendment strikes me as the kind of thing that could be a much worse idea than it appears at first glance. The issue is that the BBA is a classic instance of a measure that everyone in politics wants someone else to block. You can tell that everybody knows it’s a bad idea from the fact that throughout the entire 2001-2008 period the Republican Party managed to completely forget about it. But the explanation of what’s bad about it is wonky and non-intuitive and the BBA polls very well. If you force people to vote on it, they just might vote “yes.” That’s especially true since they can always tell themselves that it’s meaningless. Nothing happens unless 75% of the states ratify it.
But then the problem just re-instantiates at the state level. Why take a tough “no” vote on the BBA when it won’t be ratified by enough states to be enacted anyway? Then next thing you know, we’re two states away from being saddled with a Balanced Budget Amendment.