Analysis of two extremes

Let me say at the outset that, for historical reasons, I am slightly opposed to an Article 5 Convention of the States.  Remember that 238 years ago a group of men we call our Founders gathered to fix a few problems in the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union.  What we got was a new Constitution—they ignored their charge of duty and some delegates walked out in protest.


That said, please do not misinterpret.  I believe that our present Constitution is the most inspired document written by man.  (The Bible was written by God).  If we followed both we would not be in this predicament.


Now, I would like to take a few minutes to discuss a few of the points being made by both sides of the issue of an ‘Article 5 Convention’.


Mark Levin is probably the most ardent supporter of such a process, but I believe his biggest failing is to dismiss some history.  He adamantly denies that a ‘run-a-way convention’ could occur.  As noted above, we know that this has already occurred.  And not only that, but we also know that they changed the required ratification requirement from 100% of the 13 States to only 75%, or 9 States.  He also says that because it would still require 3/4 of the States to ratify any new amendment, that any nefarious deed would be rejected.  He assumes they would not again change the ratification process.  I strongly disagree with this line of thinking.  The various States would set the parameters for their delegates and those delegates would almost surely be derived of the politically well connected.  I fear many anti-Constitutionalists would be selected and not just from the ‘blue’ States.

The People would have little to no influence in their selection or the proposed amendments.  Much skullduggery could ensue.


Perhaps the most visible opponents of the Article 5 Convention of the States would be the John Birch Society.  We appreciate the attendance of Mr. Jared Maddox, State coordinator, attending our meeting on 16 Mar 2015 to present their view.  He had some powerful arguments but I think he went far afield on a few points.  There was no need for embellishment.


First, he called it a Constitutional Convention (con-con).  It is not.  Article 5 allows for a ‘…Convention for proposing Amendments…’

He also stated that Congress, under its Article 1 legislative power, would set the agenda.  The construction of Article 1 and Article 2, juxtaposed with Article 5, does not allow this conclusion.  Article 5 limits the role of Congress to calling the convention (which would necessarily include setting the place, time, and date) and setting the method of ratification, either by the Legislatures of 3/4 of the States or by Convention in the same.  If the normal Articles 1 and 2 legislative processes were to occur as Mr. Maddox states, then the President would also have veto power, which he did not mention.

Finally, but not completely, Mr. Maddox quotes Article 7, but only in part.  He said any proposed amendment(s) could be ratified by only 9 States.  That provision, in full, reads “The Ratification of the Convention of nine States, shall be sufficient for the Establishment of this Constitution between the States so ratifying the Same.”  (My emphasis)  This Article has already been fulfilled and only applied to that instance.  It also does not include the ‘Legislatures of the States’ of Article 5.


I thought Mr. Maddox’s strongest point was that, if amendments were added, why would those whom we have elected, and are now ignoring our Constitution, suddenly start obeying it?


By no means is this a complete analysis-just one person’s thoughts on the issue.  You are encouraged to delve deeper if you desire.