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Sanders is Great Fiction Writer, says Executive Director of pro-Article V Group!

I intend to respond to this within this article in bolded brackets and maybe afterwards.  But our readers should read it:

THIS is Exactly WHY People Should THINK Before WRITING About Article V

Watch out, Hemingway, Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, great writers of fiction, you have competition; Elwood Sanders has taken up his pen. In all seriousness, it is amusing to see the flights of fantasy some can produce from the bare-bones of the Constitution’s Article V; the plots, the intrigue, the surprise ending; it’s all there in Sanders’ missives.
[I am honored even sarcastically to be compared favorably with those three giants in writing!  I must have a bit of clout to get such a thoughtful response.  But it is not just me who says Article V can run away and force either secession or loss of liberty – here is Common Cause’s analysis and here is Publius Huldah’s view.]
 
As we know, Article V posits two ways to amend the Constitution: Congress can propose amendments and a convention of states can propose amendments; either way, such amendments must then be ratified by 38 states in order to change the existing Constitution. Over the last 40 years or so Congress has shown that they are not interested in fixing anything that’s “broken” in our Constitutional order, which leaves it up to the states to do so.
[No the people need to – by electing solid constitutionalists to Congress.]
What sparked Sanders’ latest novelette was California notching up the rhetoric regarding secession; some of its citizens want to secede (from Mr. Trump of course), and they see an Article V convention as the means to their end. I had been wondering how long it would take the Left after Trump was inaugurated to decide they wanted to amend the Constitution. I honestly didn’t think it would take 6 months.
[Amen!  Preach it brother on the left waiting so long!]
The government of California, the Attorney General to be exact, was recently presented with a proposed Ballot Initiative which would force the California legislature to jump on the Article V bandwagon. The citizens group wants to use a convention to set out procedures for secession in the Constitution. If you read the proposed initiative you learn that the group believes California “was seized undemocratically and annexed by the US in 1846 in an act of naked imperial aggression.”
Oddly, the group seems unaware, as Wikipedia points out, “[t]he territorial expansion of the United States toward the Pacific coast [that produced the Mexican-American War and the annexation of California] had been the goal of [President James K.] Polk, the leader of the Democratic Party.” “Naked imperial aggression,” by Democrats, who would have thunk it? But I digress…
[The digression was the best part of this article.  I was reminded of the scene in the best movie few have ever seen – Copperhead – when the leading character Abner Beech states as he holds up the Democrat ballot – something like:  “we’re going to vote for the Democratic party and the Constitution if we have to walk through hell to do it…” in what was perhaps the last time that was done together at the same time in US history – 1862!]
 
Look, it should come as no surprise that when (not if) there is an Article V Convention, liberal delegations from liberal states are going to try to propose liberal amendments to the Constitution. That’s what liberals do. They will come up with all sorts of cockamamie ideas for amendments; why should we expect otherwise? Amendments that guarantee health care for all, provide free universal education, reverse Citizens United and which abolish the Electoral College will no doubt be offered.

[Yes but we know – liberals tend not to play by the rules or they, inter alia, would have conceded Trump’s victory.  They will try to change the rules.  As Common Cause put it – “The convention could create its own ratification process, rewriting the U.S. Constitution’s states process.”  And they will be encouraged to do so by the media and powerful interests.]

But the thought that California now wants to use an Article V convention to specify secession procedures has Elwood Sanders all in a dither (even though he agrees secession should be spelled out in the Constitution!)
But before we start talking about what might or might not happen in the convention, let’s review how we get to one.
Upon receipt of 34 state applications for a convention (2/3 of the states) Congress is required by Article V to call one. But over the last 200+ years Congress has received more than 400 applications for an Article V convention and has never called for one. You would think the 34 application threshold has been met, many times over, and yet no call. Why? Congress isn’t saying, but the current thinking is that those 400+ applications were “all over the place” in terms of what they requested. Some called for what became the 17th Amendment, some called for what became the 26th Amendment, some for the Equal Rights Amendment, some in more recent years have called for a Balanced Budget Amendment; some for this amendment, some for that amendment and some did not specify exactly why the state wanted a convention. In all those 400+ applications there have never been 34 that petitioned Congress for a convention for the exact same purpose.[1] That’s where the beauty of the Convention of States Project (COSP) plan comes into play. COSP proposes 34 states apply for exactly the same sort of convention, even using the same language in the application. They want a convention for the purpose of proposing amendments which serve to limit the power and jurisdiction of the federal government, impose fiscal restraints on that government or impose limits on the terms of certain of its officials.  I think we can all agree those are worthy goals.
[I do not live in thrall of a Balanced Budget Amendment.  I do not think the Congress will follow it or there will be weasel words to let the representatives get out of it.  Huldah claims – not sure I agree but it made me think – the BBA will transform the federal government into a government of virtually unlimited powers as long as the power touches the budget.  I also feel the Parental Rights Amendment is poorly worded and is not needed – a statute will do fine.  Term limits is useful and so is an amendment requiring a bill to have a single subject.  BUT you would need taxpayer or legislator standing to sue to enforce it and if so – would Congress listen to the Supreme Court?  No thanks.]
If 34 states submit applications worded this way, how could Congress continue to ignore them?  Why would the people let them?
So let’s say the 34 applications are sent, Congress wakes up to the fact that the Constitution’s application threshold has been met, and they decide to call the convention. The date, time and place are set.  The next step is for states which decide to attend the convention (presumably all 50 would attend, but perhaps not) to appoint and instruct their delegations, just as the states did in 1787. And those delegate instructions are incredibly important, they empower the delegates, but they also set limits on the delegates’ authority. In 1787, the states empowered their delegations to “render the Foederal Constitution adequate to the exigencies of the union” (with slight wording variations). Only two states in 1787, New York and Massachusetts, borrowed a phrase from Congress’s “endorsement” of the convention which mentioned revising the Articles of Confederation. But even Congress’s “endorsement” requested the convention also “render the federal Constitution adequate to the exigencies of the Government and the preservation of the Union.”  BTW, the all-to-common charge that 1787 was a “runaway convention” is ridiculous. After the convention Congress debated whether the delegates had exceeded their authority and did not conclude that they had.  The delegates had ample authority to do exactly what they did, i.e., propose a replacement instead of a revision of the Articles.
[I do not take anyone’s word for it:  the convention to revise the Articles wrote a new document.  Now that is by definition a runaway convention.  That is probably one reason the convention was secret.]
In Sander’s 2015 post he attempted to convince us that the 1787 Convention violated the rules of the Articles by proposing the new Constitution. Yes, the Articles required the unanimous consent of all thirteen states to amend them. But how many states did it take to propose a replacement? The Articles were silent on this point. The eleven states that signed the document on 17 September 1787[2] proposed a replacement of the Articles, clearly not a revision, a replacement that would serve to “render the Foederal Constitution adequate to the exigencies of the union.” The convention submitted its proposed new Constitution to Congress and Congress voted to let the states ratify it, if they so desired. Yes, one by one, each ratifying state signaled their intent to leave the Articles confederation behind and enter a new union, a union that would be created when nine states had ratified. The states were not seceding in the way we understand the term today, they were not trying to revert to independent state status; they were exercising Jefferson’s proposal in the Declaration, they were “throw[ing] off such Government, and … provid[ing] new Guards for their future security;” they were trading one union for another, one that might actually work. So Sanders’ claim that 1787/88 was secession in action is misleading and incorrect.
[I did not claim this was reverse secession.  But by what authority did the Constitutional Convention propose a new document?  The idea that amending includes replacing shows exactly the kind of thinking that could permeate a new Article V Convention.  And this is from a conservative!]
Sanders thinks any new Article V convention will somehow propose a brand new Constitution, including a new ratification scheme, and that some states will use this opportunity to “secede by ratification.”
To liven up his plotline he throws in a litany of bad stuff that might be included in this new constitution: “they could … restrict[] gun rights, legitimatize[] abortion, place[] the US under the authority of the International Criminal Court …, give the President more power[] over …immigration, ban[] … homeschooling,…formally ban[] secession, limit[] free speech.”
[I doubt few conservatives will disagree that the left would try it.]
Yes, Sanders paints a nightmare; but just like in the movies, it’s all make-believe. Thirty-four applying states are not going to let this happen, think about it (which Sanders clearly hasn’t).
[I have been accused of having the attention span of a gnat (I’d rather they had said the fabulous tarantula!) in a comment BUT I’ll let readers decide who is right on that.  And does anyone seriously consider the left in power in USA would try to seek exactly that:  A radical change to the Constitution.  They would rather use the courts to do it – easier and less messy – but a Con-Con could do the trick.]
But Sanders conveniently skips a step; he fails to tell us how an entirely new constitution would be drafted and approved by a convention which has been called for the limited purpose of proposing amendments fitting three distinct criteria. Remember, 34 states (26 are a majority) applied for the convention for the aforementioned limited purpose. Thirty of those states are presently controlled by Republicans.  Yes, a few Blue State delegations will try to propose “snowflake amendments,” but will the 34 applying states even allow such to come to a vote? I see no reason why they should, and to deviate so widely afield from their very limited authority would, I think, result in the recall of many if not all of the 34 state delegations, likely denying the convention a quorum.
[I am concerned as much about RINOs as well as liberals.  They know how to cave in at key moments.  RINOs are good at that.  Let’s amend that pesky Second Amendment to add “reasonable regulation to provide for the public safety” or some other words that will allow creeping gun confiscation!  You and I know RINOs that would vote for that amendment.  My OTHER concern is that the liberals will either set a new level to ratify the new globalist constitution or they will walk out and take their states with them.  There is no recall provision and unlike elected officials – the delegates are accountable to no one but their own consciences.]
The very first order of business for such a convention will be to draft and approve rules for the convention. The rules will likely state what range of amendments can be considered (proposed rules have already been drafted and tested in a simulated convention). In my opinion, thirty-four applying state delegations will see to it that the limited purposes of the convention are observed. No one is going to allow a new Constitution to even be submitted, let alone approved by a majority vote of the convention.
Yes, some liberals in California are desperate to secede, and they are grasping at straws. No, an Article V convention will not provide them a means to do so, not if 34 states have followed the protocol proposed by COSP.
Like Mr. Sanders, I’m all for praying that God help us; but we got ourselves in this mess, and I think He expects us to get ourselves out of it, we certainly have the tools to do so. An Article V Convention is not a panacea for all that’s wrong with America. We have many problems that cannot be solved by amending the Constitution; but since the Court has shown no interest in reversing earlier rulings, nothing else will fix the structural problems in our Constitution created by those rulings.
 
An Article V convention is but one tool in the toolkit, but it is a tool we must use.
[If I suggested a possible cure for a serious but not immediately terminal disease had a 99% chance of some success – but a 1% chance of death – I think I would weigh the risks and benefits.  I think there is a 99% chance we’ll get exactly what the convention as set up for – the specific amendments asked for.  But there is a 1% chance – I think more – of a “new” Constitution or secession.  I’ll say it again – thank God that those men in that building in Philadelphia in 1787 loved their country and loved liberty even more.  Can we say that about the delegates who would be appointed today?  Some yes.  Some no.  Many not sure.  I refuse to take the chance.
I thank Gary for coming by and for his thoughtful response.]
Submitted by: Gary Porter
Executive Director, Constitution Leadership Initiative, Inc.

 


[1] They came close; the states were only a few applications short of 34 when Congress sent them the 17th Amendment they had, unfortunately, requested.
[2] Rhode Island did not attend, and Alexander Hamilton signed as a private citizen, not as a delegate of New York.

 

About Elwood Sanders

Elwood "Sandy" Sanders is a Hanover attorney who is an Appellate Procedure Consultant for Lantagne Legal Printing and has written ten scholarly legal articles. Sandy was also Virginia's first Appellate Defender and also helped bring curling in VA! (None of these titles imply any endorsement of Sanders’ views)

27 Responses to “Sanders is Great Fiction Writer, says Executive Director of pro-Article V Group!”

  1. Freddy Boisseau says:

    First, let me say that while voting people out of office should be the solution to a runaway Federal Government, history has shown me and should make it very clear that does not happen and I do not believe it will happen.

    We have reached a point where the people have realized they can enrich themselves by voting for those that will disburse the people’s money to their benefit or to make themselves feel better about how they treat their fellow man. Be it the person who is getting assistance from the government, or the social justice type that wants to right past wrongs with other people’s money, or the business person that sees the government as a way to gain an advantage over their competitor. And until that mindset goes away, hoping for the voters to vote the bums out is a pipe dream.

    That does not say I support the Article V movement. For the various reasons that you and others have laid out, along with my study of the previous convention. I am very concerned with the potential of this convention getting out of hand and a new constitution being proposed that grants, even more, power to the Federal Government. I only hope and pray that those the support this and are promoting this take that concern seriously and have a more federalist(one that returns the power to the states) constitution and the arguments to support it in their back pocket, and are there to pull it out when they need it.

    The main flaw in the thinking of these people is the same one that the supports of our current Constitution made, and that is that they believe that those lower on the rung of powers will not want to have what power they have taken from them. That is a good theory, but what they did not count on was that what people enjoy more than power, is the symbolism of power, without the responsibility of power. When you can pass a law or rule that gives you more control over peoples lives, and then point to someone else as responsible for you doing that, you have the best of both worlds. And today that is where we stand, how often have you approached a local or state representative about a vote, and they say they had no choice because a higher government authority had put a rule on them that they had to enforce. While you know they are loving the additional power they have over your life and the choices you can make.

    • FED UP WITH THE GOP says:

      So we should vote Republican Delegates from Hanover County Buddy Fowler and Christopher Peace out of office because they support the Artlcle V Convention of States !!!!!!!!

      • David Dietrich says:

        Se we should vote Republican Delegates from Hanover County Buddy Fowler and Christopher Peace into office because they support an Article V Convention for proposing Amendments!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        • Sandy Sanders
          Twitter:
          says:

          Not necessarily. Each rep should be reviewed on their entire voting record not just one or two things. I have corresponded with Del. Peace and Sen. McDougle on this issue.

          Sandy

          • David Dietrich says:

            Mr Sanders,

            Yes necessarily. Each rep should be reviewed for his most significant public decisions. For example, do you still consider John Roberts to be conservative? Can someone recover from an action that devastating to society? Since there are no angels, we must choose those who will get the job done for us.

            Sincerely,

            David Dietrich

    • David Dietrich says:

      Mr Boisseau,

      Given your fears (and apparently those of many others who hesitate to try something new) of a Convention, this is a good teaching moment. Here’s Article V in its entirety:

      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.

      Now, let’s address each of its major constituent parts:

      1. The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution,

      Notice here that Congress at any time whatsoever can “deem it necessary” to propose amendments to the Constitution. That is a standing authority of enormous import.

      Also notice here the difference between consideration and authority: Congress has the absolute authority to propose an Amendment at any time one is deemed “necessary,” while it merely may consider (ie has the option) whether one should be proposed (ie deemed necessary).

      Finally, notice the two uses of the term, “shall,” in this clause. The first “shall” is conditional, based on the possibility, “whenever,” while the second requires action (ie is mandatory) by Congress in session.

      2. …on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments,

      Notice here that State Legislatures have exactly the same authority (no more, no less) as Congress to propose Amendments, as well as the consideration (option) to apply to Congress (in unison) for the purpose of proposing Amendments. Nothing in Article V gives the States (or theirs representatives in Convention) any more authority that Congress in session already has.

      Notice here again the use of the mandatory term, “shall,” pertaining to Congress. When the States meet their two-thirds threshold, Congress must call a Convention for proposing Amendments. Once again, Congress’ authority here is finite. It’s duty (emphasis here) is to call, nothing more or less.

      And to further emphasize this duty, it must be made clear that failure to carry out such duty does not preclude the States from convening (note here that this word is not used in Article V, as Congress has no such authority) a Convention for proposing Amendments in any case.

      I must (mandatory requirement) emphasize again that both Congress and the States have exactly the same authority in Article V regarding the action of proposing Amendments. There is no difference between what Congress in session today can do at any time and what the States (or their Convention delegates) can do following application and Convention.

      3. 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;

      Notice here that any proposed Amendment must (once again mandatory) be ratified by either three fourths of the State Legislatures or Conventions in each of the States. In other words, any proposal that arises from either Congress or the State Convention is nothing more than an idea (rather like a bill in Congress) until three fourths of the State Institutions concur. Only at that time does it become part of our Constitution(s).

      Notice here also, that the second duty of Congress in Article V is identified – to propose Ratification Mode. In addition, this duty is not mandatory (ie “may” is optional) and therefore there is no Constitutionally binding requirement on the States to oblige.

      So, there you have it: United States Constitution, Article V 101 in a nutshell. As you can see, there is nothing to fear but fear itself. Everything you fear should already be feared, or not. In 230 years of existence, Congress in session has not written a new Constitution, and so why would the States do so, given the exact same authority? So, please stop all this red herring talk of a “Constitutional Convention,” when we either have one already (ie Congress) or we don’t. You can’t accept the one perspective in part. It’s all or nothing.

      Sincerely,

      David Dietrich

      • Freddy Boisseau says:

        Mr. Deitrich,
        Your reply shows the very arrogance that I have encountered when trying to talk to people who support the Article V Convention. You seem to think that people like Mr. Sanders and I do not understand the process or understand the safe guards that are put in place in the Constitution dealing with the Article V Convention. We do understand them and if they are held to, this convention could have some positive impact for a while on the state of our government. Especially if the correct amendments are proposed and adopted.

        No, what you and others like you seem to fail to realize, is that no matter how great our Constitution is and I truly believe it is the greatest that has ever been written to date, it is nothing more than a contract written on a piece of paper, and because of that the only power it has is based on the willingness of all parties to abide by and defend that contract. Unfortunately, history has shown that in power have been unwilling to do so, and instead have attempted to weasel their way out of the restriction that it has placed on them.

        Now you are asking me to trust that when push comes to shove, that I can trust a group of people, some of whom will hold loyalty to those in power, will abide by an agreement to limit the convention to a few specific areas, and will not attempt a bigger power grab. And further, you are asking me to trust that if they did so the very contract they are willing ignoring now, will prevent them from doing so. Forgive me, if I have concerns that are not being addresses by those that support this covention.

        I am very converative in nature, and I tend to live my life by the Boy Scout Motto “Be Prepared”, so when people proposed something this radical and game changing, I want to make sure that if something goes sideways, they have made sufficent preparation for that contingency. Instead of hearing that type of argument, I am hearing something that reminds of the marketing mateirals put out by White Star Lines about their new ship the Titanic, and we know how their belief in their own hype and lack or preparation turned out.

        A dive instructor shared with me some a very important lesson during training, if you panic you die, personally right now I see those that proposing the Article V convention as being in a panic. There is no reason we can not take the time to get it right, we have been dealing with this very issue since the 1860’s and we can spend a few more years to make sure we have covered as many as our bases as possible.

        So just to make myself clear. As I stated in my previous post, I do not share Mr. Sander’s belief that all we need is to vote the right people in to fix the propblem. That is not going to happen anytime soon, without a major shift in the thinking of the population. Have me made some progress in that area, yes, but we have also lost some ground recently.

        So the only other option that has been proposed is the Article V convention, and I am not sold on that because, they have not sold me on their plan if things do go south. What you and others have given me are platitudes and pointed to some words on a piece of paper (a really great and important piecie of paper, but a piece of paper none the less), and I have been to trust it and you that nothing will go wrong. Sorry I learned my lesson’s from history, and that has taught me to not trust either.

        So you are going to have to earn my trust by proving to me that you take my concerns seriously. Because they are not born out of the fear of something new, but instead they are born out my understanding of history and my understanding of people, both of which raise concerns as to how something like this can turn out.

        • David Dietrich says:

          Mr Boisseau,

          Your reply shows the very ignorance that I have encountered when I speak with people opposed to Constitutional remedies. You don’t understand (or are unwilling to accept) that the safeguards put in place by the Founding Fathers in Article V apply equally to the States and Congress. Therefore, such a constrained Convention is exactly equal to Congress in its authority with respect to the Constitution. And I’ll even add that Congress has and will exceed its constitutional authority, and be upheld by the Supreme Court, with no recourse by the People. That’s far more scary than using the Constitution itself to make a positive difference.

          No, what you and others like you fail to realize is that, no matter how great you think our current government is, they cannot be held to follow the original Constitution by simply electing different representatives. As a result, the contract we have must be upheld by the States and the people, using that contract itself to make an effective difference. Unfortunately, history has shown that our federal government cannot be trusted. That’s the whole point of the Convention of States Project. In lieu of any other real, effective movement to do something about federal overreach, it’s our last best hope.

          Now you continue to trust the federal government as it stands, without any effective means of doing what you purport to do. As for trust, I’ll return to my original case: the group of people designated by the States may be no different than those we elect to the federal government. Okay, so fine. Why will they suddenly do something that Congress hasn’t done for the last 230 years, just because the word, “Convention,” is used? Well, they won’t. Unfortunately, it’s really only a dog whistle for the timid crowd.

          The claim that you are “conservative in nature” translated to timid in nature. I was also a Boy Scout. Being prepared means being flexible, responding to dangers, and taking the path less traveled to prevail. So, when people like you call the Constitution, “radical,” I discount any further arguments you make. Instead of hearing that type of argument, I am hearing something that reminds me of Neville Chamberlain before the commencement of World War II, when he signed the document giving away much of Czechoslovakia to Germany. And we know how that turned out.

          A flight instructor shared with me a very important lesson during training: if you panic you die. Personally, right now, I see those opposing an Article V Convention as being in a state of paralysis. It reminds me of the poem by Niemoller, in which no one was willing to stand against tyranny, and so no one was left in the end. There is every reason to act now. Using your logic, another 100 years won’t be a problem. Of course, by then no one will be left and Amerika will be a socialist utopia.

          So, just to make myself clear. As I continue to state, let’s use every tool at our disposal to rein in the federal government. And that means the most important and powerful one – the Constitution itself! Since we haven’t really made any progress (and are unlikely to) in the area of electing the right people to federal office, we need an Article V Convention for proposing Amendments. Too many people are focused on method today, rather than outcome. Supporting and electing are meaningless concepts without actual policy change. That’s what Amendments bring about.

          So, since no other effective option has been proposed, I am sold on that. It cannot go any further “south” than Congress has already. Since the opposition crowd seems placated by that austere body, why do they have cold feet about the States meeting their republican obligation? What you and your fellow semi-constitutionalists have given me are platitudes and red herrings written by so-called “constitutional experts.” Sorry, but they are merely part of the same group that keeps Congress under its thumb. I have learned my lessons from history and experience. That has taught me that action is almost always better than inaction.

          So, I am not interested in earning your trust. You have already shown your true colors. I don’t expect to change you. This discussion is merely to present to the broader audience why so-called “conservatives” have such a hard time community organizing. They can’t make a convincing case for working together toward a conservative goal. For them, it’s always wait for a better time. That’s why progressives control education, courts, media, and government. When will the time be right? Cowering in a corner only puts on full display historical precedent and the peoples’ understanding of it.

          Sincerely,

          David Dietrich

          • Freddy Boisseau says:

            I am sorry you feel that way, I am just asking for one simple thing and I am on your side. Tell me what your plans are if the things Mr. Sanders and I have concerns about, actually happen. History has shown us that it happened before, and we are concerned it can happen again.

            We understand all the rules and limits you talk about, but we also understand the people that want bigger government will not concern themselves with that. So we have concerns.

            But your final line, show me your true color, you are not willing to earn my trust and thus my support. You have seemed to have forgotten your goal, and that is to convince people that are skeptical that you have the solution. So it is up to you to make the case that if what we say could happen, happens you have it covered. You and other have failed to do that, but again you do not care. You are going to forward because we are too stupid to go along with you.

            You talk about why conservatives do not get things done, and the main reason is not what you laid out. It is because we spend too much time telling everybody that disagree with us that they are stupid and are not intelligent enough to understand, instead of stepping back and listening to their concerns. You are failing to listen, to our concerns.

            All you have to say is that yes, what we have concerns about is a remote possibility, and you do not believe it will happen, but even if it does here is our plan to counter it. It is that simple, but of course, you refuse to do that and instead stick to your guns that what we are concern about can never ever in a million years happen, because the agreement says it can to happen. Even when you admit that there are those that are not following that agreement currently.

            This is my final post on this issue until you post something that convinces me you have addressed my one simple concern, what happens when you get to the convention and find yourself out numbered by those that are supporting a new constitution that grants more power to the Federal government. The members of the small states at the time of the last convention were making the same arguments you are until the Virginia Plan was laid out before them and most of those attending supported it. Luckily they were able to regroup and temper what Madison had laid out, with the New Jersey plan.

            (Man do I feel like Thomas Jefferson sitting between Patrick Henry and Hamilton, right now).

          • David Dietrich says:

            Mr Boisseau,

            My plans for addressing your concerns if Congress, as the principle representation of the People in the federal government, does something as fearful as you imagine, are found in the Declaration of Independence. As the Founding Fathers said, it is not only our right, but our obligation to take action. However, since history has has shown us this has not happened, I’m not at all concerned about that eventuality.

            The rules and limits on Congress are what we have today. As they all want bigger government and don’t concern themselves with such barriers to their security, we must take appropriate action.

            Your line about my earning your trust is what I said. Since you’ve already convinced yourself that any real change is too scary, you are beyond convincing by rational argument. As a result, my goal is not to convince you, but rather others who haven’t yet fallen into the emotional abyss. And since you expect there to be a contingency plan for anything that can possibly happen in Congress, it is useless to explain to you that real life has no such perfect response mechanism.

            The main reason conservatives don’t get anything done is because they’re too lazy or unwilling to get off their butts and take some real political action, not just some door knocking, rallying, or discussion groups. The last line of the Declaration of Independence makes this perfectly clear. I’ve listened to “concerns” for years. How many more years of “concerns” remain?

            Yes, there is a remote possibility that Congress will write a new Constitution tomorrow. However, 230 years of history have proven otherwise. If all we do is wring our hands in fear and trepidation over what might happen, then what is the point of doing anything for yourself or the “nation,” whatever that means today? It is that simple: you either produce no new vector by doing nothing effective or you cause a different end-state condition by taking constitutional action. If you wait for someone else to do what you say you want, you will most assuredly get what they want.

            This is far from my final post on this issue, as there are many others yet to be convinced of the efficacy of Constitutional methods. For example, what happens when you get to Congress and find yourself outnumbered by those who are supporting a new Constitution that grants more power to the federal government? Of course whatever may have happened to produce the original Constitution is unrelated to what’s happening today with the Convention of States Project, other than the word, “Constitution” in there somewhere. You see, your argument has no real validity, as Congress has not attempted what you fear.

            (Man, do I feel like Robert Lee sitting between Jefferson Davis and Abraham Lincoln right now!)

            Sincerely,

            David Dietrich

      • Patriot Mom and Dad of Three says:

        The most patriotic education you can invest in to save your country: Watch The Publius Huldah- legal scholar- on the Dangers of an Article V Convention of States…. The communists have already rewritten our constitution. Publius has two copies of their version.

        • David Dietrich says:

          The most patriotic education you can invest in to save your country: Read and understand the Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation (aka Constitution Annotated): https://www.congress.gov/constitution-annotated. Publius Huldah offers nothing worthwhile on how Article V really works. The progressives have already rewritten our Constitution (see above). The Library of Congress has unlimited copies of its version.

    • Richard (Dick) Coe
      Twitter:
      says:

      Almost everyone knows our federal government is
      on a dangerous course. The unsustainable debt
      combined with crushing regulations on states and
      businesses is a recipe for disaster.
      We do know where we are and where we’re headed,
      if we continue without change. The original
      Constitution and its baseline principles from
      the Declaration of Independence are being shredded
      to extinction. Working to reestablish its originalist
      intents with the means given within it–Article V–is
      considered too much a slippery slope to dare to try.
      I say bring it on and let’s see if the fear mongers
      have it right or not. We do not and will not believe
      their lies. If we fail, we will have failed magnificently.
      An Article V Convention of States is the constitutional
      way to bring decisions back home. It has the power to
      propose constitutional reforms that will change how D.C.
      operates. It can drain the swamp, get the feds out of our
      healthcare decisions, and force a do-nothing
      Congress to finally balance the budget.

      I believe we will be successful if we do everything good
      in our power and invoke Divine help once more as the
      Founders did when against all odds they beat the best army
      and navy in the world. If we don’t even try to use the
      Founders’ remedy, we deserve the results of our
      stupidity for failing to act when we could have won.
      Let’s give the American people what they want: more freedom,
      less federal overreach, and a prosperous outlook for future
      generations.

      So are you ready for an
      America with a balanced budget, no career politicians,
      and a government small enough to fit inside the Constitution?
      Then consider this your invitation to make it happen.
      https://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=2663108

    • Bill McDowell says:

      There is no potential for an article V convention. To get valid information on article V visit http://www.cosaction.com/?recruiter_id=1332917

  2. David Dietrich says:

    Gary,

    This is an outstanding rebuttal of Sanders’ hysteria regarding an Article V Convention for proposing Amendments. Your scholarly work is beyond reproach. Since I agree completely with your premise and refutation, I will respond to Sanders’ response within the article, as it is too important to miss.

    Sanders is Great Fiction Writer, says Executive Director of pro-Article V Group!

    Posted on August 29, 2017.

    I intend to respond to this within this article in bolded brackets and maybe afterwards. But our readers should read it:

    THIS is Exactly WHY People Should THINK Before WRITING About Article V

    DDIETRICH: I agree that people should think about their actions with respect to our Constitutional Republic. For example, have you thought about what it means to simply keep trying to “elect the right people” to do your bidding?

    Watch out, Hemingway, Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, great writers of fiction, you have competition; Elwood Sanders has taken up his pen. In all seriousness, it is amusing to see the flights of fantasy some can produce from the bare-bones of the Constitution’s Article V; the plots, the intrigue, the surprise ending; it’s all there in Sanders’ missives.
    [I am honored even sarcastically to be compared favorably with those three giants in writing! I must have a bit of clout to get such a thoughtful response. But it is not just me who says Article V can run away and force either secession or loss of liberty – here is Common Cause’s analysis and here is Publius Huldah’s view.]

    Sanders’ latest offering: THIS is Exactly WHY we DARE Not Have an Article V/COS for our Constitution!, builds upon his 2015 short story: A CONVENTION of STATES could lead to SECESSION.

    DDIETRICH: This is exactly WHY we should dare to hold an Article V Convention for proposing Amendments. Publius Huldah does not represent any more of an authority on the topic than anyone else. When she and others in her corner claim that states have different (and superior) authority than Congress with respect to Article V, they are simply blowing smoke.

    As we know, Article V posits two ways to amend the Constitution: Congress can propose amendments and a convention of states can propose amendments; either way, such amendments must then be ratified by 38 states in order to change the existing Constitution. Over the last 40 years or so Congress has shown that they are not interested in fixing anything that’s “broken” in our Constitutional order, which leaves it up to the states to do so.

    [No the people need to – by electing solid constitutionalists to Congress.]

    DDIETRICH: Yes, the people do need to take direct action, through an Article V Convention for proposing Amendments. In any case, let’s keep trying to elect the right people. Lottery tickets would have better odds.

    What sparked Sanders’ latest novelette was California notching up the rhetoric regarding secession; some of its citizens want to secede (from Mr. Trump of course), and they see an Article V convention as the means to their end. I had been wondering how long it would take the Left after Trump was inaugurated to decide they wanted to amend the Constitution. I honestly didn’t think it would take 6 months.

    [Amen! Preach it brother on the left waiting so long!]

    DDIETRICH: Great! Let’s see how California’s notion fits in with the current COS effort. Oh wait, it doesn’t!

    The government of California, the Attorney General to be exact, was recently presented with a proposed Ballot Initiative which would force the California legislature to jump on the Article V bandwagon. The citizens group wants to use a convention to set out procedures for secession in the Constitution. If you read the proposed initiative you learn that the group believes California “was seized undemocratically and annexed by the US in 1846 in an act of naked imperial aggression.”
    Oddly, the group seems unaware, as Wikipedia points out, “[t]he territorial expansion of the United States toward the Pacific coast [that produced the Mexican-American War and the annexation of California] had been the goal of [President James K.] Polk, the leader of the Democratic Party.” “Naked imperial aggression,” by Democrats, who would have thunk it? But I digress…

    [The digression was the best part of this article.

    DDIETRICH: Other than the suppression of Sanders’ anti-constitutional hysteria.

    I was reminded of the scene in the best movie few have ever seen – Copperhead – when the leading character Abner Beech states as he holds up the Democrat ballot – something like: “we’re going to vote for the Democratic party and the Constitution if we have to walk through hell to do it…” in what was perhaps the last time that was done together at the same time in US history – 1862!]

    Look, it should come as no surprise that when (not if) there is an Article V Convention, liberal delegations from liberal states are going to try to propose liberal amendments to the Constitution. That’s what liberals do. They will come up with all sorts of cockamamie ideas for amendments; why should we expect otherwise? Amendments that guarantee health care for all, provide free universal education, reverse Citizens United and which abolish the Electoral College will no doubt be offered.

    [Yes but we know – liberals tend not to play by the rules or they, inter alia, would have conceded Trump’s victory. They will try to change the rules. As Common Cause put it – “The convention could create its own ratification process, rewriting the U.S. Constitution’s states process.” And they will be encouraged to do so by the media and powerful interests.]

    DDIETRICH: True, but that is the case in Congress today, which has exactly the same authority to rewrite the Constitution (at any time) as the States under an Article V Convention for proposing Amendments. Oh wait, neither actually has such authority!

    But the thought that California now wants to use an Article V convention to specify secession procedures has Elwood Sanders all in a dither (even though he agrees secession should be spelled out in the Constitution!)
    But before we start talking about what might or might not happen in the convention, let’s review how we get to one.
    Upon receipt of 34 state applications for a convention (2/3 of the states) Congress is required by Article V to call one. But over the last 200+ years Congress has received more than 400 applications for an Article V convention and has never called for one. You would think the 34 application threshold has been met, many times over, and yet no call. Why? Congress isn’t saying, but the current thinking is that those 400+ applications were “all over the place” in terms of what they requested. Some called for what became the 17th Amendment, some called for what became the 26th Amendment, some for the Equal Rights Amendment, some in more recent years have called for a Balanced Budget Amendment; some for this amendment, some for that amendment and some did not specify exactly why the state wanted a convention. In all those 400+ applications there have never been 34 that petitioned Congress for a convention for the exact same purpose.[1] That’s where the beauty of the Convention of States Project (COSP) plan comes into play. COSP proposes 34 states apply for exactly the same sort of convention, even using the same language in the application. They want a convention for the purpose of proposing amendments which serve to limit the power and jurisdiction of the federal government, impose fiscal restraints on that government or impose limits on the terms of certain of its officials. I think we can all agree those are worthy goals.

    [I do not live in thrall of a Balanced Budget Amendment. I do not think the Congress will follow it or there will be weasel words to let the representatives get out of it. Huldah claims – not sure I agree but it made me think – the BBA will transform the federal government into a government of virtually unlimited powers as long as the power touches the budget. I also feel the Parental Rights Amendment is poorly worded and is not needed – a statute will do fine. Term limits is useful and so is an amendment requiring a bill to have a single subject. BUT you would need taxpayer or legislator standing to sue to enforce it and if so – would Congress listen to the Supreme Court? No thanks.]

    DDIETRICH: I also do not really care for a balanced Budget Amendment. But, the argument that Congress can do whatever it wants to do no matter what anyone else says or does is simply a waste of breath. That’s like saying we will all die, so why live? There are weasels in Congress today. Who cares what Huldah claims? I don’t care for the Parental Rights Amendment, either. How will term limits or single-topic bills ever be codified except by those not directly in the system already (ie the States)? If you think Congress will always disobey both their constituents and the Supreme Court, why are we having this discussion? What’s the point of actually doing anything?

    If 34 states submit applications worded this way, how could Congress continue to ignore them? Why would the people let them?
    So let’s say the 34 applications are sent, Congress wakes up to the fact that the Constitution’s application threshold has been met, and they decide to call the convention. The date, time and place are set. The next step is for states which decide to attend the convention (presumably all 50 would attend, but perhaps not) to appoint and instruct their delegations, just as the states did in 1787. And those delegate instructions are incredibly important, they empower the delegates, but they also set limits on the delegates’ authority. In 1787, the states empowered their delegations to “render the Foederal Constitution adequate to the exigencies of the union” (with slight wording variations). Only two states in 1787, New York and Massachusetts, borrowed a phrase from Congress’s “endorsement” of the convention which mentioned revising the Articles of Confederation. But even Congress’s “endorsement” requested the convention also “render the federal Constitution adequate to the exigencies of the Government and the preservation of the Union.” BTW, the all-to-common charge that 1787 was a “runaway convention” is ridiculous. After the convention Congress debated whether the delegates had exceeded their authority and did not conclude that they had. The delegates had ample authority to do exactly what they did, i.e., propose a replacement instead of a revision of the Articles.

    [I do not take anyone’s word for it: the convention to revise the Articles wrote a new document. Now that is by definition a runaway convention. That is probably one reason the convention was secret.]

    DDIETRICH: I do not take anyone’s word for it either. The Convention delegates did exactly what they were authorized to do. Now that is by definition a controlled convention. To claim otherwise also means you consider the Constitution to be illegitimate. If so, why do you purport to support it? In any case, the convention was probably secret so they could get real work done.

    In Sander’s 2015 post he attempted to convince us that the 1787 Convention violated the rules of the Articles by proposing the new Constitution. Yes, the Articles required the unanimous consent of all thirteen states to amend them. But how many states did it take to propose a replacement? The Articles were silent on this point. The eleven states that signed the document on 17 September 1787[2] proposed a replacement of the Articles, clearly not a revision, a replacement that would serve to “render the Foederal Constitution adequate to the exigencies of the union.” The convention submitted its proposed new Constitution to Congress and Congress voted to let the states ratify it, if they so desired. Yes, one by one, each ratifying state signaled their intent to leave the Articles confederation behind and enter a new union, a union that would be created when nine states had ratified. The states were not seceding in the way we understand the term today, they were not trying to revert to independent state status; they were exercising Jefferson’s proposal in the Declaration, they were “throw[ing] off such Government, and … provid[ing] new Guards for their future security;” they were trading one union for another, one that might actually work. So Sanders’ claim that 1787/88 was secession in action is misleading and incorrect.

    [I did not claim this was reverse secession. But by what authority did the Constitutional Convention propose a new document? The idea that amending includes replacing shows exactly the kind of thinking that could permeate a new Article V Convention. And this is from a conservative!]

    DDIETRICH: The Constitutional Convention proposed a new document by authority from each of the several states. The idea that amending includes replacing is only a notion of those who find the Constitutional Convention to have been without portfolio. That is certainly not indicated in any way by Article V for either Congress or the States. In any case, it is important to note that authority arose from the States and not Congress.

    Sanders thinks any new Article V convention will somehow propose a brand new Constitution, including a new ratification scheme, and that some states will use this opportunity to “secede by ratification.”
    To liven up his plotline he throws in a litany of bad stuff that might be included in this new constitution: “they could … restrict[] gun rights, legitimatize[] abortion, place[] the US under the authority of the International Criminal Court …, give the President more power[] over …immigration, ban[] … homeschooling,…formally ban[] secession, limit[] free speech.”

    [I doubt few conservatives will disagree that the left would try it.]

    DDIETRICH: Yes, and conservatives have also been doing it in Congress.

    Yes, Sanders paints a nightmare; but just like in the movies, it’s all make-believe. Thirty-four applying states are not going to let this happen, think about it (which Sanders clearly hasn’t).

    [I have been accused of having the attention span of a gnat (I’d rather they had said the fabulous tarantula!) in a comment BUT I’ll let readers decide who is right on that. And does anyone seriously consider the left in power in USA would try to seek exactly that: A radical change to the Constitution. They would rather use the courts to do it – easier and less messy – but a Con-Con could do the trick.]

    DDIETRICH: Seeking a radical change to the Constitution and actually bringing it to fruition are two entirely different things. It’s kind of like assuming that Clinton was going to be elected, when it was actually Trump. As for a “Con-Con,” Sanders has unfortunately fallen for that con, just like others who don’t understand the difference between the original Constitutional Convention and an Article V Convention for proposing Amendments.

    But Sanders conveniently skips a step; he fails to tell us how an entirely new constitution would be drafted and approved by a convention which has been called for the limited purpose of proposing amendments fitting three distinct criteria. Remember, 34 states (26 are a majority) applied for the convention for the aforementioned limited purpose. Thirty of those states are presently controlled by Republicans. Yes, a few Blue State delegations will try to propose “snowflake amendments,” but will the 34 applying states even allow such to come to a vote? I see no reason why they should, and to deviate so widely afield from their very limited authority would, I think, result in the recall of many if not all of the 34 state delegations, likely denying the convention a quorum.

    [I am concerned as much about RINOs as well as liberals. They know how to cave in at key moments. RINOs are good at that. Let’s amend that pesky Second Amendment to add “reasonable regulation to provide for the public safety” or some other words that will allow creeping gun confiscation! You and I know RINOs that would vote for that amendment. My OTHER concern is that the liberals will either set a new level to ratify the new globalist constitution or they will walk out and take their states with them. There is no recall provision and unlike elected officials – the delegates are accountable to no one but their own consciences.]

    DDIETRICH: I am not concerned as much about RINOs or liberals. I am much more concerned with upholding and USING the entire original Constitution to bring the federal government back into line. You and I know that this is the best and only effective mechanism for taking the offensive. I am also not concerned about any new bars being set. In any case, all such arguments apply equally to Congress in session today. There is no recall provision for them, either. The delegates are accountable to their States.

    The very first order of business for such a convention will be to draft and approve rules for the convention. The rules will likely state what range of amendments can be considered (proposed rules have already been drafted and tested in a simulated convention). In my opinion, thirty-four applying state delegations will see to it that the limited purposes of the convention are observed. No one is going to allow a new Constitution to even be submitted, let alone approved by a majority vote of the convention.
    Yes, some liberals in California are desperate to secede, and they are grasping at straws. No, an Article V convention will not provide them a means to do so, not if 34 states have followed the protocol proposed by COSP.
    Like Mr. Sanders, I’m all for praying that God help us; but we got ourselves in this mess, and I think He expects us to get ourselves out of it, we certainly have the tools to do so. An Article V Convention is not a panacea for all that’s wrong with America. We have many problems that cannot be solved by amending the Constitution; but since the Court has shown no interest in reversing earlier rulings, nothing else will fix the structural problems in our Constitution created by those rulings.

    An Article V convention is but one tool in the toolkit, but it is a tool we must use.

    [If I suggested a possible cure for a serious but not immediately terminal disease had a 99% chance of some success – but a 1% chance of death – I think I would weigh the risks and benefits. I think there is a 99% chance we’ll get exactly what the convention as set up for – the specific amendments asked for. But there is a 1% chance – I think more – of a “new” Constitution or secession. I’ll say it again – thank God that those men in that building in Philadelphia in 1787 loved their country and loved liberty even more. Can we say that about the delegates who would be appointed today? Some yes. Some no. Many not sure. I refuse to take the chance.
    I thank Gary for coming by and for his thoughtful response.]

    DDIETRICH: This last comment really undermines Sanders’ credibility. His argument is that because applying the whole Constitution to a constitutional crisis is difficult, we should instead just give up and accept our socialist utopia. There is also a 1% chance – I think more – of Congress writing a new Constitution. So what? I’ll agree with him about the Founding Fathers, though. That was certainly an alignment of the stars. In any case, the hard problem must be addressed by the stock available today. I am more willing to take a chance with them than the elected and unelected officials in office today.

    Submitted by: Gary Porter
    Executive Director, Constitution Leadership Initiative, Inc.
    gary@constitutionleadership.org

    [1] They came close; the states were only a few applications short of 34 when Congress sent them the 17th Amendment they had, unfortunately, requested.
    [2] Rhode Island did not attend, and Alexander Hamilton signed as a private citizen, not as a delegate of New York.

    • Sandy Sanders
      Twitter:
      says:

      This takes the cake for the longest comment ever to one of my posts at VR. Glad you came by and care about this issue. I sure hope you are right but fear you are dead wrong. Well done comments but I am not persuaded. If elected to the legislature I would vote against EVERY con-con bill before it.

      Sandy

  3. David Dietrich says:

    Mr Sanders,

    My response was far from the “longest comment ever” to one of your posts. I merely inserted my comments beneath yours within the original article. Did you even read what I had to say?

    As for being right, you seem to be another one of those opposed to the entire Constitution simply due to paralysis and “fear” (your word). And your confusion about a “con-con” is also telling.

    Sincerely,

    David Dietrich

  4. Russell Beyer says:

    I am in total agreement with David Dietrich’s comments in support of an Article V Convention of States. Mr. Sanders, I know how you feel about it. I once felt that way too. But let me tell you what I have found.

    It IS part of the constitution, so acting under is it is not “extra-constitutional”….by definition it is constitutional. Those who confuse a Convention of States acting under the authority of the constitution with a “constitutional convention” might be surprised by the number of conventions of states that were held before and after the constitution was written and ratified. There are plenty of safeguards in the process, not the least of which is that you must have 38 states to ratify. The applications restrain the topics to be considered and some states have attached recalls and prison terms to commissioners that do not act accordingly.

    I always have to laugh when someone brings up the tired old “con-con/runaway convention” myth about when the original constitution was written. (If it was runaway, why have we complied with it ever since???) It was legitimately called and ratified by the states: https://www.conventionofstates.com/can_we_trust_the_constitution.

    My questions to those opposed: Are there any other portions of the constitution as currently amended that you have a problem with? Is your government behaving as you wish? We currently have a runaway supreme court that has been enabling the other two branches to play outside their yards.

    The Constitution Annotated is basically a constitution as modified over time by the supreme court. it is the the actual constitution that we are operating under…just about 3,000 pages! It is available from the government printing office.

    “The Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation (popularly known as the Constitution Annotated) contains legal analysis and interpretation of the United States Constitution, based primarily on Supreme Court case law. This regularly updated resource is especially useful when researching the constitutional implications of a specific issue or topic. The Featured Topics and Cases page highlights recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions that demonstrate pivotal interpretations of the Constitution’s provisions.”

    Article V is there for a reason, and it’s never been used. Publius Huldah (have you read her background???) and Common Cause (over 200 Soros funded organizations) are actively opposed to Article V…..the very people that some seem to think would take over a convention of states?????? Following the status quo and assuming the federal government will police itself is a fool’s errand.

  5. Carol Menges says:

    James Madison, the Father of the Constitution, is attacked along with the rest of the Founding Fathers by accusing them of illegally adopting the Constitution. At the same time Publius Huldah “expects us to venerate this supposed tyrant [James Madison] and hang on his every word. How strange that [she] should so heavily rely on the same man [she] accuse[s] of a felony.”
    https://www.conventionofstates.com/response_to_article_by_publius_huldah

    Publius Huldah was debunked a long time ago.

    “Only 9 states were needed to ratify the Constitution per its terms. The 9th state was New Hampshire on June 21, 1788; however, it was recognized that powerful states such as Virginia and New York were needed for support and they hadn’t yet done so. Virginia ratified on June 25, 1788 and New York on July 26, 1788. In May 1790 Rhode Island became the final state to ratify; the law had already gone into effect before then. (citing Sen. Mike Lee, “Our Lost Constitution, The Willful Subversion of American’s Founding Document,” 2015: Mike Lee, Penguin Group (USA) LLC, pp. 220-221, Notes)

    Runaway conventions–if such nonsence is to be entertained for the sake of making a point–would be countered quite successfully by states that will not allow rogue amendment proposals to become law. Only thirteen of them are needed to stop any or all of them.

    Readers have to wonder, based on the often repeated argument that the original Constitutional Convention was illegal, what foundation does this opposition stand on? If the Constitution was, as they say, produced illegally, wouldn’t it be better to hush the COS Project people up before the whole world finds this out? You can’t have it both ways. Either the Constitution is the law of the land or it is not, based on your reasoning.

    The delegates to the 1787 convention were commissioned to “render the federal constitution adequate to the exigencies of the union”. The Constitution was ratified appropriately, becoming the right and proper law of the land. A Convention of States appropriately will be convened to right the wrongs that have dragged us unmercifully away from it.

    • I think I’d like to see the evidence of the “debunking” of Huldah as a link or links to your next comment. I read the ink you did cite and while Michael Farris is worthy of the highest respect, I think this is almost a ad hominiam argument (Huldah is anonymous – of course so was the writers of the Federalist Papers, too – and she calls Madison a felon – where did that come from? etc.) but the runaway convention has NOT been refuted – it DID in fact occur – in 1787! Again, thank the Lord Jesus, the men in 1787 were dedicated to liberty and their nation (maybe Hamilton was something of an exception but even his intention was good) and they ran off the rails, too.

      I will probably do a quick response and move on. Thanks for coming by, Carol. Sandy

      • Carol Menges says:

        Publius Huldah calling Madison a felon is a fact by implication. If Madison hadn’t been for the Constitutional Convention, he certainly wouldn’t have written the new Constitution and many articles to substantiate it and persuade others to his view; nor would he have worked tirelessly to encourage nervous Founders to see the necessity of it. The runaway convention idea has been refuted by those who’ve studied the issue extensively and have come to the conclusion that it’s clear the Founders had the right to convene–per their sovereign state legislatures’ commissions–to do what needed to be done; the Articles of Confederation were made by the states, and then the states realized they had to do something better. In other words, they began very carefully by trying to prop up the Articles of Confederation. When they found they couldn’t do that and make a strong stand against the encroachment of European nations, they did the second option: deliberating, debating, and voting for the document that would redirect the whole of the nation from a confederation to a federation. They had that right to go that far, but it wasn’t their right to finalize the change without the vote of We the People; after the Constitutional Convention they had to get approval from the people within their sovereign states. They got nine out of 13 colonies’ approval right away, and later the rest signed on too. If the Constitutional Convention had been illegal–a clear runaway–that would have made Madison a felon in fact. Joanna Ruth Scutari–alias Publius Huldah–believes many core things that just aren’t true.

  6. Robert Buckley II says:

    The fear of a runaway convention by hijacking a Convention of States is frankly outrageous. It’s being used by liberals and conservatives who have no other valid argument nor solution for our out of control Federal Govt. The Framers knew that someday, even with their carefully crafted separation of powers between the States and Feds and among the three branches, the Constitution would need to be updated or refined to maintain their vision for liberty and freedom. They purposely made fulfilling the requirements for an Article 5 convention and the ratification of amendments very difficult to avoid frivolous or treacherous attempts at undermining our Country’s purpose. To not seize the opportunity to utilize Article 5 for rescuing our Country out of an unreasonable fear is not only outrageous but bordering on cowardice. Learn more at cosaction.com and sign the petition.

  7. Paul Adcock says:

    I don’t believe the Convention will run away. DC is already dangerous enough without needing to hijack an Article V convention. Their goal would be to stop our convention from happening, and, if that fails, to make sure we don’t get good amendments passed. It would be foolish for them to push for Article V with the hope of hijacking it due to the very very very very high chance that we’d end their party and rein in the government.

  8. Laurie says:

    I support an Article V Convention of States because it is the tool the Framers gave to We the People to use for a day such as this, when the federal government becomes a leviathan. Learn more and sign the petition at http://www.conventionofstates.com

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    Tom White Says:

    Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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