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READ ARTICLE V
AMENDMENTS WITHOUT CONGRESS
COLORADO'S ARTICLE V SYMPOSIUM
PROFESSOR ROB NATELSON COUNTERS THE NAY-SAYERS
GOLDWATER INSTITUTE DEBUNKS 'RUNAWAY' CONVENTION
CONVENTION OF STATES RESPONDS TO JOHN BIRCH SOCIETY
SPEAR OF LIBERTY'S "DOC" BLOGS ON ARTICLE V
MORE PROFESSOR NATELSON WRITINGS
RONALD REAGAN LETTER SUPPORTING ARTICLE V CONVENTION

 

 

 

       
 
CONSTITUTION ~ ARTICLE V
Amendments WITHOUT Congress
 

Read Article V HERE

Pleae Help Get The Word Out!
Take every opportunity to learn how to
|| Take Our Government Back! ||
This video was done by the team in Alabama ~ It's a great introduction to Article V
 
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Article V ~ Amendments WITHOUT Congress
 

The goal of the Symposium was to inform citizens and legislators about the role of the states in proposing amendments to the U.S. Constitution and their power to use Article V to reform our out-of-control federal government. SEE FULL SYMPOSIUM HERE TOP OF PAGE

Rob Natelson
 

Rob Natelson is recognized as a distinguished authority on the Constitution's original meaning and on Article V. The Independence Institute's Senior Fellow in Constitutional Jurisprudence is one of America's best-known Constitutional scholars.

The Supreme Court confirms that the historical usages ARE relevent because the courts interpret and apply Article V according to historical usage. This is settled Constitutional law. more

What About that Warren Burger Letter Against An Article V Convention?
  Groups opposed to calling an Article V convention often cite an old letter written by the late Chief Justice Warren Burger opposing such a convention. [Most noteworthy is Phyllis Schlafly of Eagle Forum] It is strange that those groups should be quoting Berger, because they also purport to oppose the liberal activism—notably the abortion decision of Roe v. Wade—practiced by the Court when Burger was Chief Justice. (Burger voted with the majority in Roe.) Naturally, those groups never acknowledge that Justice Antonin Scalia, a far more principled and talented justice than Burger, has strongly advocated for an amendments convention.
In any event, Roe v. Wade does offer a hint as to why Burger would write a letter opposing a convention for proposing amendments.
First, consider that Burger seems to have known very little about Article V. He wrote his letter well before the publication of modern research on the subject. Unlike Justices Rehnquist and Stevens, he appears never to have heard an Article V case. Supreme Court justices sometimes publish articles on issues they have researched, but the legal databases reveal nothing on Article V ever published by Burger. Indeed, his ignorance of the subject appears in the letter itself, which erroneously labels the gathering a “constitutional convention” and repeats the old myth the 1787 convention exceeded its authority. more
             
How Liberal Opponents Misled Conservatives into Opposing an Amendments Convention
 

Some conservative groups have become known for uncompromising opposition to the Constitution’s convention method of proposing constitutional amendments.

They may think they are protecting the republic. But it turns out that they are mostly carrying water for the liberal establishment.

New research shows that nearly all the arguments of convention opponents merely repeat disinformation first propagated by the liberal establishment in the mid-20th century. The goal of this disinformation campaign was to disable an important check on federal overreach.

The Founders created the convention method of proposing amendments to enable the people, acting through their state legislatures, to offer corrective changes if the federal government ever became unresponsive, abusive or dysfunctional. When two thirds of the legislatures pass resolutions demanding it, Congress must convene a task force known as a “convention of the states“—or, in the language of the Constitution, a “Convention for proposing Amendments.” If that task force does propose amendments, they become law only if ratified by three fourths of the states.

As the federal government grew larger and more abusive during the 20th century, conservatives and moderates repeatedly suggested constitutional amendments as a partial cure. They included proposals to reverse certain Supreme Court decisions, such as Roe v. Wade; to otherwise restrict judicial activism; and to impose term limits and require a balanced federal budget. more

             

| Our American Constitution | Constitutional Studies |
| Article V ~ Scroll down to: On Amending the Constitution | TOP OF PAGE
Goldwater Institute
 

"The Goldwater Institute’s mission is based on principle, not partisanship or personalities. Our attorneys boast a perfect win rate in the United States Supreme Court, and a 70 percent victory rate on average."

DEBUNKING MYTH OF THE 'RUNAWAY' CONVENTION
 

by Nick Dranias
Nick Dranias holds the Clarence J. and Katherine P. Duncan Chair for Constitutional Government and is Director of the Joseph and Dorothy Donnelly Moller Center for Constitutional Government at the Goldwater Institute. more

Article V of the U.S. Constitution gives a supermajority of state legislatures the power to call a convention to restrain an overreaching federal government through targeted constitutional amendments. There is no reason to worry about a “runaway” convention because three-fourths of the states—38 states—would have to ratify whatever amendment might be proposed. Moreover, nothing in the nation’s history justifies fear of a “runaway” convention.

It is a myth that the U.S. Constitution was born of a “runaway” convention. more

             

| STATES MUST NOT IGNORE POWERFUL AVENUE FOR BRINGING BACK FEDERALISM |
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Convention of States ~ A Project of Citizens for Self-Governance
 
What about the John Birch Society slate of objections?
 

Michael Farris provides detailed answers to ALL of their objections: "The John Birch Society describes itself as a constitutionalist organization, yet it is highly critical of a very important component of the Constitution. The JBS does not like Article V’s provision that allows the States to unilaterally propose and ratify amendments to the Constitution.
George Mason demanded that this provision be included in Article V because he correctly forecast the situation we face today. He predicted that Washington, D.C. would violate its constitutional limitations and the States would need to make adjustments to the constitutional text in order to rein in the abuse of power by the federal government." more
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Spear of Liberty's "Doc" blogs on Article V
What do we got (sic) on the spacecraft that’s good?
 

...at the Independence Institute Article V meeting, Robert Berry, author of Amendments Without Congress, likened our broken federal government to the situation faced by NASA during the Apollo 13 mission. Remember in the movie after the oxygen tank aboard the spacecraft exploded, and everyone at mission control was getting swamped with malfunction messages? NASA flight director Gene Kranz took charge of the situation, saying “Let’s look at this thing from. . .a standpoint of status. What do we got (sic) on the spacecraft that’s good?” He rallied the team to start working on a solution to get the astronauts back, instead of just focusing on all the bad stuff that was happening.

Our government may be in shambles, but we still have the Constitution. And the Constitution is the only way to get our freedoms back. ~ Doc MORE TOP OF PAGE

Are We Willing to Use the Constitution to Save the Constitution?
 

“But, unfortunately, law by no means confines itself to its proper functions. And when it has exceeded its proper functions, it has not done so merely in some inconsequential and debatable matters. The law has gone further than this; it has acted in direct opposition to its own purpose. The law has been used to destroy its own objective: It has been applied to annihilating the justice that it was supposed to maintain; to limiting and destroying rights which its real purpose was to respect. The law has placed the collective force at the disposal of the unscrupulous who wish, without risk, to exploit the person, liberty, and property of others. It has converted plunder into a right, in order to protect plunder. And it has converted lawful defense into a crime, in order to punish lawful defense.” Frederic Bastiat – The Law

It seems that almost every day now we are learning about something else the federal government has done, or is plotting to do, to further regulate, tax, ban, confiscate, or otherwise limit our freedoms and those of our children – while the leaders who pass such laws “for our own good” find ways to exempt themselves. All the while, our government has run up an oppressive debt which has become a significant national security threat. In the not-so-distant future we will be making interest payments over $1 trillion – yet the spending, printing, and borrowing continues unabated.

Even so, there is hope. The Founders gave us the Constitution. ~ Doc more TOP OF PAGE

Fascism: Are We There Yet?
 

While I am as fed up with government overreach as anyone, when a pundit or blogger asks such a question, I have in the past generally shrugged it off as hyperbole that isn’t necessarily helpful to the conversation. However, increasingly there are some eerie parallels.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary and Concise Encyclopedia define fascism as “a way of organizing a society in which a government ruled by a dictator controls the lives of the people and in which people are not allowed to disagree with the government,” where the government “stresses the primacy and glory of the state, unquestioning obedience to its leader, subordination of the individual will to the state’s authority, and harsh suppression of dissent." ~ Doc more TOP OF PAGE

All Hands on Deck to Save the Constitution
 

Like many Americans, I have been shocked by how quickly our elected leaders have taken the hard-left turn toward socialism, particularly in the last few years. Ten years ago, I would have never thought anything like this would be possible, at least not in my lifetime.

Granted, the necessary elements to get away with such a coup were put in place over the span of decades, if not longer. Recognizing that our system of government as established was based on Judeo-Christian principles (i.e. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights. . .”), the enemies of freedom have been diligently working to destroy the family structure, devalue life, replace “God and Country” with moral relativism and multiculturalism, distort free-market capitalism, and create entire communities wholly dependent on government.

So what can we do? We must look to God, and to the Constitution. We must pray, and we must educate ourselves so that we can fight back. If America chooses revival, and the States stand up to the federal government, we can and will restore federalism and the rule of law. If not, liberty will be lost. ~ Doc more
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D’Souza Dominates Debate with Ayers (but Fumbles on Article V)
 

Last week I watched this video of Dinesh D’Souza debating Bill Ayers at Dartmouth recently. While Ayers slammed the Founders and laid out his philosophy of redistribution and social justice, D’Souza focused on American exceptionalism, and clearly articulated why the Founders got it right.

D’Souza pointed out that throughout world history, wealth has generally been confiscated and then redistributed. However, our system of “self rule” in which all men are considered equal, along with a Constitution that limits what government can do to you, has allowed for actual wealth creation. ~ Doc more
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Article V in Colorado!
 

As many of you already know, Article V of the U.S. Constitution lays out the process for amending the Constitution. Congress can amend the Constitution if two-thirds of the House and two-thirds of the Senate propose an amendment, and ¾ of the state legislatures then ratify it.

However, George Mason and others, realizing the dangers of an all-powerful centralized government, insisted that this authority not be limited to just the national government. Therefore, the second clause of Article V was included as a check on federal power. It specifies that if two-thirds of the States propose an amendment, and ¾ of the States then ratify it, the Constitution can be directly amended by state legislatures as well (bypassing Congress, the President, and the Supreme Court).

The latter method for amending the Constitution has never been used before. That being said, our country has arguably never been in such dire straits, apart from events leading up to the Civil War. With our federal government having become so large, unresponsive, burdensome, and intrusive, Americans across the country are realizing that the States must act. ~ Doc more
SEE FULL ARTICLE V SYMPOSIUM HERE
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More writings by Professor Rob Natelson

Article V Convention Process and the Restoration of Federalism

 

"...no Congress or President is likely to do much to restore Constitutional limits on federal power." ~ Rob Natelson more
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James Madison and the Constitution’s “Convention for Proposing Amendments”
 

When drafting resolutions for the Virginia legislature the following year, [Madison] relied on Article V to demonstrate that it was proper for the states to communicate with each other on constitutional issues: “The Legislatures of the States have a right also to originate amendments to the Constitution, by a concurrence of two-thirds of the whole number, in applications to Congress for the purpose." ~ Rob Natelson more TOP OF PAGE

Liberty Amendments by Mark Levin || SUMMARY OF THE LIBERTY AMENDMENTS ||
 

Liberty Amendments by Mark Levin

 

For a century, the Statists have steadfastly constructed a federal Leviathan, distorting and evading our constitutional system in pursuit of an all-powerful, ubiquitous central government. The result is an ongoing and growing assault on individual liberty, state sovereignty, and the social compact. Levin argues that if we cherish our American heritage, it is time to embrace a constitutional revival.

The delegates to the 1787 Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia and the delegates to each state's ratification convention foresaw a time when—despite their best efforts to forestall it—the Federal government might breach the Constitution's limits and become oppressive. Agencies such as the IRS and EPA and programs such as Obamacare demonstrate that the Framers' fear was prescient.

Levin argues that the Framers provided a method in the Constitution for addressing our current circumstances - which, he insists, must be resuscitated - and lays forth specific prescriptions for restoring the American republic. The answers, Levin insists, are not found in Congress, the Supreme Court, or the presidency. MORE || SUMMARY OF THE LIBERTY AMENDMENTS || TOP OF PAGE

 
Opponents to an Article V Amendments Convention
 
Phyllis Schlafly
 

"...The whole process is a prescription for political chaos, controversy and confrontation. I’m worried about those who think they can do a better job than George Washington, James Madison, Ben Franklin and Alexander Hamilton....

"...All the articles that tell us not to worry about the mischief and pitfalls of an Article V convention added together don’t add up to the eloquent letter and prestige of the late U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger. [Burger’s letter is reproduced in full here. Please note, Burger erroneously refers to a "Constitutional Convention" clearly indicating that, although he was Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, he had zero understanding of the difference between a "Constitutional Convention," which is NOT referenced ANYWHERE in the Constitution, and a "CONVENTION OF STATES TO PROPOSE AMENDMENTS," which IS clearly and specifically defined as one of two methods available to the citizens of These United States to draft and offer to our fellow citizens, changes to the Original Constitution, which would then require the APPROVAL of three-quarters of ALL the States. There have been, THUS FAR, a total of 27 CHANGES made to the Original Constitution. The NEXT CHANGE, or AMENDMENT, will be AMENDMENT or CHANGE #28. FULL REFUTATION of the Buger Letter can be seen here. FURTHER NOTE: Do you find it ironic that Schlafly uses a letter from the Justice who, using disjointed arguments, gave America Roe v Wade ~ which decision Schlafly is fighting to this day ~ to bolster her own disjointed arguments against Article V?]

"His analysis is fortified by many really distinguished constitutional authorities, both Republican and Democratic, who say it is impossible to restrict the agenda of a new convention to amend the Constitution, including Gerald Gunther of Stanford Law School (whose textbook is used in the majority of law schools), Charles Black of Yale, Walter Dellinger of Duke, and Charles Alan Wright of the University of Texas."
Phyllis Schlafly, Mischief-Making about the Constitution, Sept. 2013

Interestingly, in the same article, Schlafly references James Madison as an opponent to a Convention of States to Propose Amendments, when, in reality, Madison was quite specific that the State legislatures have an absolute right to propose amendments to the Constitution. more

ADDITIONALLY, Ronald Reagan strongly supported a Convention of States to propose a balanced budget amendment that had, once again, been rejected by Congress. (Read Reagan's complete letter here)

 

John Birch Society (JBS)
 

"Those who love the Constitution should be wary of Article V convention advocates who all too easily give false assurances as to the safety of such a convention. The Constitution need not be amended, but rather should be defended by upholding it. Changing the Constitution will not correct man’s failure to properly interpret or willingly obey it."
Republicans and Democrats Working Together to Rewrite the Constitution, Sept. 9, 2014

Each JBS argument is answered, with full citations, here

 

Dudley Brown of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners and Gun Owners of America and National Association of Gun Rights
 

Below are the highlights (LOW-lighs??) of the first anti-Article V email Dudley Brown sent out (He has since sent out a second email with the same basic rants.) As endless as this message appears, the full email is NOT reproduced because of its length...

...and Dudley includes a link to his "Mandate": (Unfortunately, both the emails and the Mandate are an incoherent mish-mash of every misunderstanding and distortion of Article V that we've ever seen or heard from Phyllis Schlafly and the John Birch Society.)

Because ALL OF DUDLEY BROWN'S objections are merely restatements of the tired and TOTALLY DISCREDITED rants of Phyllis Schlafly and the John Birch Society, they are all thoroughly answered (This list is repeated at the end of Dudley's message.)
1) REFUTATION of the Buger Letter can be seen here
2) Madison on States convening a Convention to propose Amendments
here
3) Ronald Reagan's support of a Convention of States here
4) Each JBS argument is answered, with full citations, here

Maybe we need to start referring to the freedoms of speech, religion, press and association as the First CHANGE; the right to keep and bear arms, the Second CHANGE and on through the Twenty-Seventh CHANGE!! In other words, The Bill of Rights were the first ten CHANGES to the Original Constitution!!

Maybe Folks would start to understand that EVERY amendment is a CHANGE to what? Oh, yeah...to the original Constitution!! AND there have been 27 of those changes...EACH of which had to be ratified by three-quarters of the state legislatures ~ The exact same ratio that would be required to ratify EACH CHANGE that would be proposed via a convention of states! In fact, it is this requirement that each and every PROPOSED change (amendment) that would come out of a MEETING (Convention) of States MUST be APPROVED (ratified) by three-quarters of ALL the State Legislators.

Dudley Brown's (abbreviated) rant:
Subject: Don't Blame the Constitution
Date: Tue, 27 Jan 2015 16:04:38 -0800
From: Dudley Brown <dudley.brown@rmgo.org>

I wanted to make sure you had a chance to read my email from the National Association for Gun Rights outlining the dangers of an "Article V Constitutional Convention."

Unfortunately, a core group of Republican lawmakers -- right here in Colorado -- have been duped by snake-oil sales men into believing our Constitution needs to be changed.

I'm very worried about the negative consequences this could have for our Second Amendment rights.

“If only the Founders were as smart and trustworthy as today’s politicians, then we wouldn’t have all the problems we see nowadays.”

No, that’s not a talking point from anti-gun nanny staters like BILLIONAIRE anti-gun activist Michael Bloomberg or even President Obama.

I’m afraid it’s pure snake oil being peddled by professional “conservative” charlatans -- with help from a handful of political celebrities who should know better -- demanding a state-initiated Article V Constitutional Convention.

I’ve ignored the Constitutional Convention con job until now -- hoping and praying it would just fall flat before it gained too much steam.

But I can’t any longer.

I’m sick of seeing good folks get duped with this fool’s gold.

And I’m worried what this could mean for the future of our Second Amendment rights . . .

The truth is, if those pushing an Article V Constitutional Convention ever succeed, ALL of our freedoms protected by the United States Constitution -- including the Second Amendment -- would be put on the chopping block!

That’s why I’m counting on your action today.

There’s no doubt that Washington, D.C. has spun out-of-control in recent years.

And I know fixing their mess is the motivation behind many misguided folks who are pushing this scheme.

But a Constitutional Convention is NOT the answer for several critical reasons.

As Article V of the United States Constitution provides, states can bypass Congress to call for a Constitutional Convention.

34 states would be required to initiate a “Con-Con” as it’s sometimes referred to.

Besides those very general parameters, the Constitution is silent on much of the process. But this much is sure:
>>> DELEGATES WOULD BE SELECTED BY STATE GOVERNMENTS IN THE MANNER OF THEIR OWN CHOOSING.

Without patriots like James Madison and Benjamin Franklin, would you trust these folks if the convention went behind closed doors -- like the 1789 convention in Philadelphia did?

>>> THE CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION ITSELF WOULD BE CHAOS.

Just imagine the special interests and protesters lining up to demand their piece of the pie. Imagine our anti-gun national media types doing everything they can to skew the convention outcome.

Those of us who would like to see our Second Amendment and the rest of our Constitution untouched would be immediately demonized as “backward” and “radical.”

>>> AN ARTICLE V CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION WOULDN’T EVEN WORK.

The problems we face today are not the Founders’ faults, and there’s nothing wrong with the Constitution we have now.

The problem is that we have politicians who won’t obey it! That’s not going to change unless you and I FORCE them to take their oaths of office seriously.

>>> ANY NUMBER OF AMENDMENTS TO THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION COULD BE CONSIDERED.

This, by far, is the biggest danger -- and the biggest lie being spread by convention proponents who claim “there’s nothing to worry about.”

The moment a Constitutional Convention convenes, you and I might as well kiss our Second Amendment rights goodbye.

If you’ve ever been to a political party convention, you’ve seen enough shenanigans to know they’re hardly a pristine processes.

Just imagine what you and I would see come out of a Constitutional Convention with even more crooked players and even higher stakes!

Fellow Patriot, you and I want no part of this madness.

My plan is to use everything from U.S. mail and email, to Internet, radio and even TV ads if necessary to ensure this scheme is stopped.

Thank you for all you do.

For Freedom,


Dudley Brown
President

P.S. I’ve tried to ignore this threat in hopes it would go away.

But now three states have already passed resolutions calling for an Article V Constitutional Convention.

Fellow Patriot, this is bad news for gun owners!

If this scheme ever succeeds, ALL of our freedoms protected by the United States Constitution -- including the Second Amendment -- would be put on the chopping block.

That’s why I’m counting on you to please sign your DEFEND THE CONSTITUTION MANDATE right away.

And if you can, please consider chipping in $10 or $20 to help the National Association for Gun Rights continue our important work.

Because ALL OF DUDLEY BROWN'S objections are merely restatements of the tired and TOTALLY DISCREDITED rants of Phyllis Schlafly and the John Birch Society, they are all thoroughly answered
1) REFUTATION of the Buger Letter can be seen
here
2) Madison on States convening a Convention to propose Amendments here
3) Ronald Reagan's support of a Convention of States here
4) Each JBS argument is answered, with full citations, here


 

 
 
 

 

                           
                           
                           
                           
                           
                           
               
             
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