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Momentum Builds for Convention of States

Momentum Builds for Convention of States

Attention Congress: America doesn’t trust you.

Last week, Louisiana passed a resolution calling for a Convention of States as described in Article V of the U.S. Constitution. The resolution passed on May 25 with a vote of 62-36, making Louisiana the eighth state to call for a meeting of the states for the purpose of proposing constitutional amendments addressing abuses by the U.S. Federal Government. Other states that have called a Convention of States for the same purposes are Florida, Georgia, Alaska, Alabama, Tennessee, Indiana, and Oklahoma.

Increased national interest in a Convention of States (COS) is due largely to the government’s failure to operate as the Framers envisioned. Having accrued a national debt of over $19 trillion and a debt-to-GDP ratio of 105%, the government’s size and scope has grown far beyond anything the Founders could have imagined. Meanwhile, the states, having created the Federal Government, find themselves acting at the mercy of Washington’s limitless regulations and outstretched tentacles, lest they lose federal sacred funding.

At present, the lines of power separating what the Framers originally intended to be three co-equal branches of government have become faint and are often ignored. Presidents, both current and past, have entrusted lawmaking authority to unelected employees of an ever-growing executive branch. President Obama has threatened on more than one occasion to take the law into his own hands if Congress refused to draft the legislation he desired. The senate’s willingness to forfeit its constitutionally enumerated authorization of the Iran Nuclear Proliferation Treaty in favor of a review process that didn’t even apply to the nuclear treaty itself.

Whether or not the general public is aware of the erosion of the separation of powers doctrine, many Americans do sense something is structurally wrong with today’s federal government; some are even desperate enough to look to a self-proclaimed Socialist for answers. Congressional job approval ratings have declined steadily the past 15 years and presently hover around 13%. Election after election, politicians are voted into office with promises of sticking to principles and shaking up Washington, only to abandon their promises in favor of going along to get along. Come reelection time, however, Americans can rest assured their congressman or woman will surface after a term of relative obscurity to put up a good, newsworthy “fight” for his or her constituents.

At a hearing last month, former Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) described the problem the nation faces and explained why many Americans have begun looking beyond Washington and the next election for a solution:

Article V begins as follows (italics added):

The Congress, whenever two thirds of both houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose amendments to this Constitution, or, on the application of the legislatures of two thirds of the several states, shall call a convention for proposing amendments, which, in either case, shall be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of this Constitution, when ratified by the legislatures of three fourths of the several states, or by conventions in three fourths thereofas the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress;

In short, there are two ways to go about amending the Constitution, the first of which involves the writing and approval of an amendment by two-thirds of Congress. It is then sent to the state legislatures, three-fourths of which must approve the amendment in order for it to become law. The Constitution has been amended using this method 27 times.

The second method, discussed by Sen. Coburn, requires two-thirds (34 of 50) of state legislatures submit applications calling for a convention for the purpose of proposing amendments. Like the first method, amendments proposed at this Convention of the States (COS) must then be sent back to the states for approval by either three-fourths of state legislatures or by three-fourths of their respective conventions. The method of proposing constitutional amendments by way of a COS has been attempted in the past, but without success.

Why a Convention of States option was included in the Constitution

During the drafting and ratification processes of the Constitution, Founders took special care to assure those that worried the federal government might become too powerful. In Federalist 45James Madison addressed the anti-Federalist concern that states would become powerless under the proposed Constitution. Madison, however, assured that states would retain many of their powers, save a few enumerated ones:

“The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected.”

Familiar with the human tendency to inch towards corruption and consolidate power, the Framers foresaw a time when the government would become too powerful and would no longer represent the will of the people and that of the states that authorized its power. Because of this, they included in Article V two ways of imposing structural changes to the Federal Government. The option for the states to be involved in the proposition process of an amendment rather than solely in an amendment’s ratification was suggested by Virginia delegate George Mason just two days before the close of the 1787 Philadelphia convention:

“Col. Mason thought the plan of amending the Constitution exceptionable & dangerous. As the proposing of amendments is in both the modes to depend, in the first immediately, in the second, ultimately, on Congress, no amendments of the proper kind would ever be obtained by the people, if the Government should become oppressive, as he verily believed would be the case.”

As the record shows, Mason was concerned that Article V, in its preliminary form, allowed for only Congress to propose amendments. He worried that a congress, should it become abusive, would never propose amendments curtailing its own abuse. A portion of that preliminary version is as follows:

“Article 5: The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem necessary, or on the application of two thirds of the Legislatures of the several States, shall propose, amendments to this Constitution, which shall be valid to all intents and purposes as part thereof, when the same shall have been ratified by three fourths at least of the Legislatures of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by the Congress;”

Reservations about the process

Whether congress or the states propose an amendment, it’s important to note that neither of these actions calls for the type of convention that produced the U.S. Constitution in Philadelphia. This convention, having taken place over 3 months in Philadelphia, is sometimes referred to as a “constitutional” or “open” convention. Although a COS is certainly constitutional and falls well within the states’ constitutional rights, it should not be confused with a convention for the purpose of writing a constitution. The 1787 convention, on the other hand, was explicitly called for by several of the states during a convention in Annapolis one year prior. All states attending the Philadelphia convention in 1787, therefore, were aware of the issues to be discussed prior to their attendance.

Unlike the Philadelphia convention, a COS is a meeting of the 50 states scheduled in order to address a predetermined issue or subject matter. As constitutional scholar and professor Robert Natelson explained, America’s history of holding conventions is rarely discussed, but in fact was firmly documented. At least 30 interstate and intercontinental conventions in America’s history, the earliest having occurred in 1689 and the most recent in 1922. Whether a convention was called by all states to address a national concern or by a few states to solve a shared, regional problem, the records of prior conventions provide for us a documented history of the rules and procedures for states to follow.

Because the constitution requires that all 34 of states’ applications for a COS be of the same subject matter(s), a COS will not be called until 34 states seek to convene over the same subject. Once this occurs, Congress is constitutionally required to (i.e. “Congress … shall”) schedule a COS whether or not Congress agrees with the meeting’s purpose.

At a time when the Constitution seems often ignored or perverted by the Obama administration, Supreme Court justices, and others, skeptics of the COS process question how another constitutional amendment would fix the problem. Mark Meckler, founder and president of Citizens for Self Governance and active promoter of COS, told Legal Insurrection the problem lies less in a failure to adhere to the Constitution and more in Washington’s refusal to take into consideration the Framers’ original intent:

“Generally speaking (with some notable exceptions) the federal government actually does follow the Constitution. Unfortunately, it follows it as interpreted by the Supreme Court, not according to original intent. For example, the Commerce Clause was intended to give the federal government very narrow authority. It has been dramatically broadened by SCOTUS over the last 100 years. So the goal is to push back against these broad interpretations by the Court. We can either hope for 100 years of Supreme Court reversals, or use the tools the Founders gave us in Article V.

Second, we have a history of Amendments, and they are generally followed pretty well. Think of 13th, 14th, 16th, 17th, 19th, 21st, etc. This is because Amendments are achieved by enormous acts of political muscle which have the backing of the vast majority of the public. Politicians are cowards who follow, not lead.  Over time we drift away from mass movements of political muscle like that. But it takes decades.”

Meckler also heads the Convention of States Project, an effort that has been instrumental in mobilizing citizens and state legislators interested in the COS process. Even though proponents of the COS option are largely conservative constitutionalists, Meckler said this hasn’t stopped Democrats from supporting COS legislation in several states. The legislator co-sponsoring the COS resolution in the Ohio House of Representatives is a Democrat. Eight Democrats also supported the COS resolution in Oklahoma, which passed last month. “Those are just two examples,” Meckler said, “but there are many more.”

As far as amendment topics are concerned, states having passed legislation calling for a COS have limited their applications to a convention for proposing a balanced budget amendment as well as proposing some type of term limits, both of which hold about 80% the public’s support. “The Amendments which will actually come out of convention and be ratified are those with exceptionally broad public support,” Meckler added. “Anything polarizing is likely to not come out of convention, and if it did, would not be ratified.”

Disclosure: The author volunteers for the Convention of States Project in her state

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Comments

DieJustAsHappy | June 2, 2016 at 8:01 pm

8 out of the 34 required for a COS. After all that has transpired these past years with the three branches of our federal government, only 8? This is about as likely to happen as Trump making America great again.

    smalltownoklahoman in reply to DieJustAsHappy. | June 2, 2016 at 8:30 pm

    I think that this can largely be attributed to a lack of public awareness. There are scads of videos online showing off just how politically ignorant much of the population is currently. It’s likely that many who don’t pay attention to politics are even aware this option exists.

      The media don’t seem to be covering this either.

      DieJustAsHappy in reply to smalltownoklahoman. | June 2, 2016 at 8:52 pm

      Considering the three leading contenders for the Oval Office, it’s doubtful that “ignorance” is going to change any time soon. It well may take some horrendous event or extreme misery as a catalyst for a call, a demand if you will, to turn the tide.

        Xenomethean in reply to DieJustAsHappy. | June 2, 2016 at 11:00 pm

        Let us pray it does not come to that.

          DieJustAsHappy in reply to Xenomethean. | June 2, 2016 at 11:40 pm

          I do, daily. Yet, there’s that pesky thing called history. It suggests that the more matters get out of balance just as great, it not greater, effort is required to restore some sense of balance.

          TNPatriot in reply to Xenomethean. | June 3, 2016 at 7:58 am

          Your comments seems to assume that it takes 50% plus 1 of the country to get an Article V convention called (34 states), for amendments to be proposed (26 States) and for amendments to be ratified (38 states). This is simply not true. An examination of the eight states which have passed the COSP resolution shows that it takes a very small number of very active people to make this happen. In fact, the strategy of the COSP is to have 100+ activists in each of only 3,000 state house districts across the country. I live in TN, where the resolution has passed, and we have 99 house districts. We passed it with only a few hundred activists involved. But we are not stopping there. We are working our way to 100+ volunteers per district. Why? Because our goal is NOT to call the convention — it is to ratify effective amendments. Imagine when we reach 100+ activists per district (which we are working towards quickly) and we put out a call to action — that would be 10,000 people calling or visiting the TN General Assembly — IN A SINGLE DAY. We rocked their boat with only a few hundred activists — a light breeze. We would be a hurricane! They would NOT ignore our call to propose amendments at the convention, vote to pass amendments out of the convention and vote to ratify those amendments.

          Folks, this requires less than 0.1% of the country to be involved. It requires only 1 person per 1,000 in the country. Less than 500,000 people CAN and WILL turn this country around. There were millions involved just in the Cruz campaign (not to get into Presidential politics, but just to show how movements operate).

          Once people understand the problem, understand the solution and understand the strategy, they get on board quickly!

          We are growing quickly in Tennessee. We invite all who care about our constitutional republic and want to keep it from falling off the political cliff or the financial cliff to join us!

          Start by telling your state lawmakers to do the duty given to them by the Founders under Article V to protect you from the runaway federal government! Send them this letter: cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=8642. Make sure to provide your voting address on the second page so that the system can identify your STATE house district and STATE senate district.

          This CAN be done. It is BEING done. Either stand by and watch as history passes you by — or be able to tell your progeny in the decades to come that you took action during the “great constitutional crisis” to save our Constitutional Republic and ensure your progeny’s freedom and liberty.

          Let’s do this!

    lfhill in reply to DieJustAsHappy. | June 3, 2016 at 7:30 pm

    The Convention of States Project Is Not Republican or Democrat. The powers that be on both sides of the isle want you to doubt it’s chance for success, in fact their counting on it. Along with many others that will sit on the sidelines and say, the democrats are to blame, the Republicans are to blame, the people who elected them are to blame for electing them and now we can’t do anything because it probably won’t work anyway.
    “President Ronald Reagan cautioned that Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.
    ― Mark R. Levin, Ameritopia: The Unmaking of America

    “To sit back hoping that someday, someway, someone will make things right is to go on feeding the crocodile, hoping he will eat you last – but eat you he will”
    ―Ronald Reagan
    Don’t be one of the Facebook nay Sayers who just sit back and post about it, get up and do something about it. I can’t guarantee you it will succeed but I can guarantee that if everyone sits back and say I doubt it will work and does nothing it won’t Have you signed the Petition yet? So what are you waiting for You can join the movement to restore our constitutional republic. Please sign the petition today here.http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=336213

Slightly over two decades ago, I started calling for a Constitutional Convention to rectify the manifold errors that had corrupted the Constitution, including a series of horrendous decisions by our courts.

High time, seems to me.

Be careful what you ask for. A COS could END the Constitution as we know it and replace it with a statist’s wet-dream.

    rabidfox in reply to genes. | June 2, 2016 at 8:35 pm

    Any proposed amendments have to be ratified by 60%(?)75%(?) of the states. More than a simple majority for sure.

      ecreegan in reply to rabidfox. | June 2, 2016 at 8:48 pm

      Any amendments would have to be ratified by 75% of the states, either by legislature or by convention; Congress gets to choose which.

      Full text of Article V

      The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.

    Ragspierre in reply to genes. | June 2, 2016 at 8:43 pm

    First, no; a CHARTERED convention would only consider certain issues.

    Second, the Constitution was intended to BELONG to the people. The Founders understood that the people could take their charter in directions they did not intend or of which they did not approve.

    It’s still better than to ignore it.

sjf_control | June 2, 2016 at 8:34 pm

Dear Greg Abbott — why the hell isn’t Texas on that list?

    Remember that the Texas Legislature only meets every OTHER year.

    “The Texas Legislature meets in a regular session every two years, convening on the second Tuesday in January of every odd-numbered year.”

    Greg Abbott first called for this in Jan 2016. When the Legislature begins next year, he’ll have a chance to do something.

I thought Abbott was the governor who initially called for for this.

Meanwhile, the states, having created the Federal Government, find themselves acting at the mercy of Washington’s limitless regulations and outstretched tentacles, lest they lose federal sacred funding.

They’ve already been bought.

And since the state governments have the same problem of gross overspending as does the federal government, as a practical matter they’ll stay bought.

It’s not an inescapable trap … but since in general state governments are no better managed than the feds—they’re all miserable, though not in exactly the same ways—I don’t expect that any will manage to get out of it.

So that’s really the first step I’d look for. If a state does manage to tell the feds no, we’re not going along with whatever the stupid program du jour is, no matter how much money you wave at us … then I’d start believing that someone has a real plan to fight federal overreach.

And nobody needs a convention to do that. Existing law, and vision and resolve we’re not likely to see, are what’s needed. Anything else is just more big talk.

The 1787 Convention was not called for the purpose of drafting a replacement for the Articles of Confederation. Surely those proposing this COS are aware that the 1787 convention was called for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Articles of Confederation under which the USA first operated; that the Articles of Confederation has serious difficulties inhibiting effective national government operation. That original purpose for the convention, amending those Articles, was one reason that the 1787 Convention decided to act in secrecy, even to the extent of ensuring that people could not peek into the Hall during the Conventions sessions; a true blackout as to the convention’s operation.

Many of us are well aware of the Federalist Papers yet are many aware of the anti-federalist papers and tracts that came out in opposition to the new Constitution and of the many arguments that ranged back and forth over ratification of the Constitution?

It is very likely that the proposed COS would be hijacked by those unkind and tyrannical folks of the left and while whatever would be proposed would need to be ratified, the outcome of that popular struggle could be problematical at best; it could well be a near run thing gained or lost. Basically, once the COS is called and delegates chosen, our future will be in the hands of those personages and may God be shining down on their souls and ours too.

Lastly, Levine and others seem to insist that the COS could be a controlled event and that seems most unlikely given the temperament of today’s society. The COS would be its own judge, and jury, with we the people possibly only mere onlookers at what?

No thank you, for me, the present Constitution is adequate, with its present imperfections, yet acceptable as the basis for our legal system.

    Doug:

    “Surely those proposing this COS are aware that the 1787 convention was called for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Articles of Confederation under which the USA first operated; that the Articles of Confederation has serious difficulties inhibiting effective national government operation.?”

    You are, of course, correct. I might also point out that there are no significant defects in the current constitution that require ‘correction’. Yes, it might be better if our national Senators were appointed by the states they represent, but given the existing collusion between state and federal governments, particularly in regards to federal funding of state functions, I see little to no hope for improvement.

    With few exceptions, the various state governments have shown little inclination to free themselves from the entanglements of federal funding. Given this, I see no reason to entrust our constitution, as ineffective as it currently is, to the hands of those that have already rendered it meaningless.

    Unknown3rdParty in reply to Doug Wright. | June 3, 2016 at 10:07 am

    Amen. There’s this funny matter of “obeying the law” that most people overlook when calling for new amendments. Too many of our men and women don’t follow the current Constitution, Bill of Rights and other amendments, what will make them obey the law with yet another amendment?

    There are those, knowing that most of our current legislators are not constitutionally literate, who are counting on a runaway convention, as happened in 1787. They’re counting those who are gullible and easily duped to believe that a convention can be restricted. Once called, all cards are placed on the table.

    Finally, who in our current crop of legislators and lobbyists and other elites do you trust to give us something better than was already given to us?

“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” John Adams

Until we can stop flunking this test, not much of anything we do will matter.

Step 1: Get your kids out of the government monopoly bureaucratic leftist indoctrination public school system.

Absolutely incorrect. Read the post again carefully. Pay careful attention to the last section “Reservations about the process” A Article 5 convention is not a rewrite.

    MSO in reply to OldNuc. | June 2, 2016 at 10:21 pm

    You seem to believe that placing the fate of the constitution into the hands of those who have already betrayed it is a good thing.

    Your argument seems to be that you’ll be entrusting the constitution into the hands of those who wish to protect and preserve our constitution. I see no way to bring that about.

    OldNuc: While it could be so hoped, the COS will do what it decides to do, with the proof of whether that is acceptable, or not, wholly dependent on whether the product, outcome, of that COS is ratified. Perhaps the COS delegates would choose to amend a part of the Constitution, or perhaps those delegates choose to replace our Constitution with a new national charter.

    Consider how Levine, or anyone, could pose an objection to a ratified outcome, whereby that ratification meets the requirement defined in that new national charter? Isn’t that what the 1787 Convention did in fact with its convention’s product? Could SCOTUS so rule on this new charter, when perhaps SCOTUS as we know it now would not exist under that new ratified charter; what about a Council of Wise Men rather than our SCOTUS as the supreme arbiter of laws.

    To those who argue forcefully for a COS, know that you might reap something different from what you thought you sowed.

      OldNuc in reply to Doug Wright. | June 3, 2016 at 10:04 pm

      Doug Wright I would suggest you take a look at the law for picking the delegates to the proposed COS passed by the individual states. Specifically the one passed by Indiana. This is NOT a freewheeling dog fight amongst randomly selected delegates who have no guidance or leash. It is this continuous belching up of gross misinformation that is killing the COS off. The consequences of killing this off will likely be severe.

Xenomethean | June 2, 2016 at 11:03 pm

From what I have seen from Obama’s presidency, I feel that the president, congress, and the supreme court have all violated states rights repeatedly, yet nothing was done.

Humphrey's Executor | June 2, 2016 at 11:09 pm

Good but if they re=write it they have to use block letters because young folks today can’t read cursive.

But wait, Trump is going to make America great again. Why do we need the Convention?

The problem with any modern-day Convention of the States is that the very same elitist professional politicians who serve The PARTY first, themselves second and may give passing thought to those who elected them into office will be large and in charge.

“…a COS have limited their applications to a convention for proposing a balanced budget amendment as well as proposing some type of term limits,”

And I would hope that any amendment passed would create serious, and I mean serious, repercussions for those politicians who did not balance the budget every year. I do not want congress or the POTUS to play an end game around the amendment. And any budget increase should be tied to a real, not imaginary, economic milestone that is figured by at least seven economic institutes outside of Washington and whose books are open to the public.

Wish list: I would also like to see the office of POTUS more tightly circumscribed by the Constitution and not the other way around. And I want all regulatory agencies, the Dept. of Ed, and the IRS destroyed. A simple flat tax should be imposed in tandem with the balanced budget amendment. The income tax should be capped at 10% for all and for eternity.

If the COS only accomplished this, then the country will be in “Yugely” better shape than if His Greatness Trump became resident President.

Trump is an elitist who very much wants to be in the Ruling Class. He feels he’s paid his dues to get into the club.

What I would like is to govern according to the Constitution we have and leave it the hell alone.

Unknown3rdParty | June 3, 2016 at 9:44 am

Not a good idea, as has already been noted in some of the postings. Some of those calling for a ConCon or Convention of the States, whatever they want to call it, are completely unaware of the potential it has … and some are, which is why they want a ConCon. The fact is, we have a very serviceable Constitution right now. The problem is NOT the Constitution or lack of certain amendments, it’s an outright failure of (1) our elected officials to abide by the Constitution and (2) the electorate to hold the feet of their elected officials to the proverbial fire and insist, under threat of removal from office, to obey the Constitution.

As the federal government insinuates and entrenches itself into the educational system, mandating what will be taught and what will NOT be taught, they begin to control the narrative, reducing American history about the Revolutionary War to a bunch of terrorists, obfuscating the facts about the Founding Fathers and their collective and individual experiences, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, free markets, constitutional republics vs. other forms of government, etc. and rendering the students wholly incapable of understanding the choice they have. And that’s by design.

The Constitution IS the solution, not some amendment. But before the Constitution can be the solution, a correct education NOT involving the federal government and correctly covering the founding and foundations of this country–which necessarily requires the Constitution and the Bill of Rights–is essential, and it behooves every parent and grandparent to step up and take steps to wrest control of the schools from the Democrats, Socialists and Communists that have placed themselves in charge of “educating” our youth, or to take advantage of home school opportunities … while they still exist.

buckeyeminuteman | June 3, 2016 at 1:08 pm

I’ve been getting update emails from the Convention of States Project for probably two years now. This is the first I’m hearing about it on Legal Insurrection. Instead of pontificating on how great Trump is or isn’t, can we please see more on a COS at this website? I’ve had enough of the 2016 race already but a COS is where we could see real progress. We need to be talking to our friends and coworkers about this. And we definitely need to be pressing our state senators and reps.

    Taryn O'Neill in reply to buckeyeminuteman. | June 3, 2016 at 4:11 pm

    buckeyeminuteman:

    Thank you for your comments on COS. Personally, I feel that exploring this option is a must for conservatives and liberty-minded Americans, regardless of where they might stand on Trump, Hillary, etc.

    The government we have right now is more dangerous than any of the dangers perceived by the skeptics. In many respects, we’ve had a runaway government for at least the last 7 1/2 years.

Congress is totally drunk on it’s own POWER!! The “establishment” will do NOTHING to rein itself in. A COS is the ONLY METHOD remaining unless you want to start a shooting civil war. There must be TERM LIMITS for ALL ELECTED AND APPOINTED OFFICIALS. No more Senators that suck off the fed tit for 40 years and retire multi-millionaires. 12 years MAX. And a balanced budget except in time of war. And various departments must be eliminated. Education, energy and I’m sure others. We cannot AFFORD THEM any longer. Because no matter who is elected in Nov., NOTHING will change. Government will continue to grow, taxes will rise and the 99.9% will PAY for it.

“But before the Constitution can be the solution, a correct education NOT involving the federal government and correctly covering the founding and foundations of this country–which necessarily requires the Constitution and the Bill of Rights–is essential, and it behooves every parent and grandparent to step up and take steps to wrest control of the schools from the Democrats, Socialists and Communists that have placed themselves in charge of “educating” our youth, or to take advantage of home school opportunities … while they still exist.”

Here’s something I don’t understand. You’re for smaller government, and yet you want to “wrest control of the schools”. Do you not understand that that would make you in charge of a BIG GOVERNMENT system?

Just because leftists have been successful at using the power of government to indoctrinate our children, that doesn’t excuse your impulse to use it to indoctrinate their children. Unless you’re part of the BAMN crowd.

Here’s what you can do, and you can do it right now, and it doesn’t require COS. Get your kids, grandkids, and even help to get other people’s kids OUT of the government monopoly bureaucratic “public” school system. Don’t wait for politicians, vouchers, tax credits. Do it now.

The Convention of States Project Is Not Republican or Democrat. The powers that be on both sides of the isle want you to doubt it’s chance for success, in fact their counting on it. Along with many others that will sit on the sidelines and say, the democrats are to blame, the Republicans are to blame, the people who elected them are to blame for electing them and now we can’t do anything because it probably won’t work anyway.
“President Ronald Reagan cautioned that Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.
― Mark R. Levin, Ameritopia: The Unmaking of America

“To sit back hoping that someday, someway, someone will make things right is to go on feeding the crocodile, hoping he will eat you last – but eat you he will”
―Ronald Reagan
Don’t be one of the Facebook nay Sayers who just sit back and post about it, get up and do something about it. I can’t guarantee you it will succeed but I can guarantee that if everyone sits back and say I doubt it will work and does nothing it won’t Have you signed the Petition yet? So what are you waiting for You can join the movement to restore our constitutional republic. Please sign the petition today here.http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=336213

cliffwilkin | June 3, 2016 at 7:57 pm

Nice job Tayrn!!!!

Results of a calling for a convention of states = Bill of Rights (1789) Results of not calling for a convention of states = Civil War (1861) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_state_applications_for_an_Article_V_Convention The Founders unanimously provided Article V option for the states to balance the federal government’s overreach. More than 400 such state applications have been filed over the years including the first couple that led to the bill of rights. As with all amendments to the constitution 38 states (both houses) are required for ratification. This is an enormously protective requirement that has only been reached 27 or so times. The COS Project application has already been passed by 8 states and 20 or more state houses. This application is limited to 3 areas: (a) Impose fiscal restraints on the Federal Government. (b) Limit the power and jurisdiction of the Federal Government. (c) Limit the terms of office for federal officials and members of Congress. Please sign E-Petition. Takes less than 20 seconds. http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=1310229 This will encourage your local state rep to become more involved in States’ rights.

LifeLibHappy | June 4, 2016 at 9:52 am

Why a conventionofstates.com ?

“…small government gives you big freedoms–and Big Government leaves you with very little freedom. The opposite of Big Government is not small government, but Big Liberty. The bailout and the stimulus and the budget and the trillion-dollar deficits are not merely massive transfers from the most dynamic and productive sector to the least dynamic and productive. When governments annex a huge chunk of the economy, they also annex a huge chunk of individual liberty. You fundamentally change the relationship between the citizen and the state into something closer to that of junkie and pusher–and you make it very difficult ever to change back.”
― Mark Steyn, After America: Get Ready for Armageddon

Why not work with the Government to change direction?

“It is folly to believe that Congress and the president, on their own, will make the necessary and difficult decisions to address the impending financial debacle. After all, they and their predecessors engineered the approaching tsunami. As the situation becomes direr, the federal government’s actions will grow more oppressive.”
― Mark R. Levin, The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic

Why NOW ?

“President Ronald Reagan cautioned that Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.
― Mark R. Levin, Ameritopia: The Unmaking of America

“To sit back hoping that someday, someway, someone will make things right is to go on feeding the crocodile, hoping he will eat you last – but eat you he will”

Ronald Reagan

Wait for the Tyrannical Federal Government to devour the Civil Society or join us.

http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=246073

Proponents of a “Convention of the States” point out that there have been many, including in the 20th century. Thus, an Article V convention would work the same way.

The problem with this is that those “Conventions of the States” WERE NOT an Article V convention, and that an Article V convention is not a “Convention of the States”.

The power to propose amendments is explicitly reserved to Congress and the convention itself. The convention is a creature of the Constitution, not of the states as in a “Convention of the States”. The word “propose” means the same thing in the same sentence, meaning that the convention has all the powers to propose amendments that Congress has… and that the states can not limit that no more than they could limit what Congress proposes.

According to the plain text of the Amendment, states are limited to petitioning Congress to call the convention, and to ratifying any amendments proposed by the convention.

Originally, the proposal was to empower the states to propose amendments, which the Congress was required to vote on it. The requirement was changed from considering amendments to calling a convention for the purpose of proposing amendments.

    Taryn O'Neill in reply to The Political Hat. | June 4, 2016 at 7:52 pm

    To The Political Hat:

    I’m not aware of proponents of Convention of the States claiming that there have already been many “Conventions of States” held for the purpose of proposing amendments. There have been many conventions held between states, but for other purposes. Neither am I saying it here.

    Re: “According to the plain text of the Amendment, states are limited to petitioning Congress to call the convention, and to ratifying any amendments proposed by the convention.”

    You are right in that the text in Article V doesn’t say who holds, attends, or operates the convention, but you are wrong, in my opinion, in asserting that “the states are limited to petitioning Congress to call the convention.” In no place does it say this. As history shows us, conventions between states were held for all sorts of purposes, both before and after ratification of the Constitution. If conventions already were the gathering mechanism that states used to solve shared problems, and if public and political understanding of the word “convention” at the time was mutually understood amongst them as an interstate convention, I see no need for them to have specified this in Article V. Neither do I see the logic that points to the convention being held by congress and not the states. Congress does has a clerical role in collecting/counting the states’ applications and scheduling the convention, but that is all.
    We also know that Framers debated in writing and on the 1787 convention floor – which was also well-documented – over the need to provide an avenue for the states themselves (or their elected delegates) to propose amendments via a convention. Not just Congress.

    In Federalist 43 Madison wrote about both proposing amendments through Congress and through the states (excerpt):
    “… It was requisite, therefore, that a mode for introducing them [amendments] should be provided. The mode preferred by the convention seems to be stamped with every mark of propriety. It guards equally against that extreme facility, which would render the Constitution too mutable; and that extreme difficulty, which might perpetuate its discovered faults. It, moreover, equally enables the general and the State governments to originate the amendment of errors, as they may be pointed out on one side, or on the other …”

Americans realize that the federal government will never control itself. The solution lies in using Article V of the US Constitution to call a Convention of States to peacefully and constitutionally bring the federal government back under control of the states. The Founders unanimously provided the balance of power to the states and that is Article V. The threat of Article V conventions alone has led to several amendments including the bill of rights. This effort is active in all 50 states. Please learn more and join the liberty loving volunteers in this amazing grassroots movement. http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=1636326

As Henry David Thoreau once said, “There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.” Now we know who the enemy is. It’s time we strike at the root of this evil revolution and stop its destruction of our Freedom. In their wisdom, the drafters of the Constitution provided us with a remedy for abuses of federal power that are left unchecked by the federal judiciary. It is time for us to apply that remedy by invoking Article V’s procedure to call for a Convention of the States to propose amendments that will restore the original meaning of the Constitution.
Americans realize that the federal government will never control itself. The solution lies in using Article V of the US Constitution to call a Convention of States to peacefully and constitutionally bring the federal government back under control of the states. This effort is active in all 50 states. Please learn more and join the liberty loving volunteers in this amazing grassroots movement. http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=1636326

I think everyone would agree that DC will never vote to reform itself. Therefore, the only solution is for the people, through their state legislatures, to call for a convention of states.

And if you think DC isn’t worried about this, just remember, when the states got close to this in the past, Congress rushed in with their own proposal that became the 17th amendment. Regardless of what you think about the 17th, the fact that Congress headed off a convention should convince you that Congress is pretty scared of this option.

And that should give us all hope.

Clayton Bink | June 7, 2016 at 1:54 pm

Of course we don’t trust our government! They have done nothing but usurp our authority to govern our own lives with the out of control, faceless, unaccountable bureaucrats dictating every aspect of our existence!

There is an answer: The Convention of States Project!

We are determined to reassert our authority over the federal leviathan.

Learn more here: http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=1082678

It is entirely painless to sign the petition encouraging your representatives to support us.

Learn about Citizens for Self-Governance and our Article V Convention of States Project by visiting our website: http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=1501881

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