Skip to main content

I know many of you don't pay much attention to the right-wing noise machine, and when you do dismiss what you hear for obvious reaons -- like they're generally full of shit.

Well, that's all true, but that doesn't mean they're not dangerous.  After all, many liberals and progressives laughed at and dismissed Rush Limbaugh and the other right-wing talk radio shock jocks as clowns, back in the 90s, but look how much influence he has had and how much damage he's done to our civil discourse.  These things have a way of flying under the radar until they reach a critical mass, then they explode to cause no end of trouble.

That's why I'm writing today about a growing movement in far-right circles that sounds like a bunch of crackpots, but could actually pose a serious danger to our democracy.  Spurred on by Mark Levin and others, there is a grass-roots conservative movement to convene an Article V convention of the States to amend the Constitution by enacting so-called "Liberty Amendments" that would eliminate the popular election of Senators, require a balanced federal budget, prohibit the federal government from any activity conducted by the states (including healthcare), effectively eliminate the commerce clause and the general welfare clause, enact term limits on judges and enable the States to overturn judicial decisions, impose nation-wide voter id laws, and enshrine several other far-right hobbyhorses as Constitutional imperatives.  And this movement has support from people who should know better, like state representatives from Indiana and Georgia.  While obviously on the fringe now, these sorts of things have a tendency to become mainstream conservative thought if unchecked.  Follow me below the squiggle for more details.  

There is a meeting of representatives from at least 30 states scheduled just three days from now, Saturday, December 7, at the library in Mount Vernon.  (Is nothing sacred?  George Washington is probably spinning in his grave even as we speak.)  Elected officials will be among the attendees: David Long, President of the Indiana State Senate; and Jason Spencer, Georgia state representative.  

In fact, the state of Indiana has actually enacted legislation to facilitate the appointment of delegates to such a convention, and to govern their activities.

To take a step back, I should explain that Article V of the Constitution provides two ways to amend the Constitution.  The first, with which we are familiar because it is the way all amendments have been enacted to date, is for two-thirds of the House and Senate to vote for an amendment, which is then sent to the States for ratification (which requires approval by three-fourths of the States).  But alternatively, if two-thirds (34) of the States so request to Congress, Congress must then call a convention to propose amendments (which must then be ratified, again, by three-fourths of the States).  Although the procedures for such a convention are unclear, the folks currently pushing this take the position that such a convention would be a creature of the State legislatures, with delegates appointed by the legislatures and bound by their instructions.

Think about it -- while I haven't done the math, I bet you could come up with two-thirds of the States with a combined population less than that of California and New York.  At any rate, clearly the convention could be convened at the request of legislatures representing a small minority of the nation's population.  This is yet another attempt by the right to enact policies that they can't win through legitimate elections.  

As I said, these folks are meeting this Saturday, they are serious, and they are backed by mass media.  We need to make people aware of this threat to democracy and preemptively discredit those pushing it, before it picks up more steam.  In particular, we should contact our State legislative representatives and make very clear our opposition to any such constitutional convention.  

Here are more links with general information about this movement:  here, here, here,  and here.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

claude, ROGNM, Radiowalla, Subterranean, Rolfyboy6, Powered Grace, madmsf, Sprinkles, Emerson, Shockwave, LynChi, Wintermute, eeff, ManfromMiddletown, fugwb, lippythelion69, roses, slouching, FriendlyNeighbor, Texknight, annan, defluxion10, Timbuk3, lcrp, 313to212, eztempo, Gowrie Gal, Brecht, historys mysteries, Bluesee, denise b, LakeSuperior, sap, Alice Venturi, ChemBob, reflectionsv37, majcmb1, spitemissile, Inland, BayAreaKen, RichterScale, Tunk, Shotput8, kathny, blueoasis, real world chick, katrinka, ER Doc, blue in NC, NancyWH, HM2Viking, krwheaton, john07801, hooper, anotherdemocrat, tgypsy, edsbrooklyn, LillithMc, wildweasels, Cofcos, Dave in Northridge, certainot, Assaf, Empower Ink, bkamr, JaxDem, Involuntary Exile, elwior, tofumagoo, Jeff Y, codairem, Gemina13, elpacifico66, billybam, greengemini, Carol in San Antonio, CanyonWren, Obama Amabo, elziax, MKSinSA, Wendy Slammo, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, brunoboy, gramofsam1, kjoftherock, Crabby Abbey, Lost and Found, ATFILLINOIS, Eddie L, BlueFranco, petesmom, Oh Mary Oh, Actbriniel, Onomastic, annieli, renbear, ozsea1, marleycat, PrescottPatriot, LSmith, illegal smile, peregrine kate, VTCC73, Miggles, jadt65, Mentatmark, caryltoo, sow hat, IndieGuy, orangecurtainlib, belinda ridgewood, Free Jazz at High Noon, cuphalffull, dotdash2u, George3, mumtaznepal, Arilca Mockingbird, Hammerhand, Most Awesome Nana, allensl, Ray Pensador, countwebb, JayRaye, SanFernandoValleyMom, bob152, marcr22, notevenclosetoonepercent, LilithGardener, DGraf, Kombema, Moravan, RUNDOWN, CA wildwoman, karma5230, eagleray, Capt Crunch, RocketJSquirrel, jbsoul, Old Sailor, kathy in ga, ginimck, SistahZa

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site