That Extreme Difficulty Which Might Perpetuate its Discovered Faults

SHOULD THE STATES DEMAND A CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION?

by Montgomery Blair Sibley, ©2014, blogging at Amo Probos

(Oct. 23, 2014) — Some observations on the nuances of Article V are in order. First, the plain language of Article V is clear and decisive: Congress shall call a “Convention for proposing Amendments,” not a convention for proposing an amendment. It is therefore clear than an Article V convention has the power to consider various issues and the right to submit various amendments to the states for consideration and, if warranted, ratification. In addition, the language in Article V does not authorize the states to apply for an amendment; rather they are only authorized to apply for a convention for proposing amendments.

Second, the focus of Article V is clearly on the ability of the states to demand a convention, and not on the subjects to be considered by such a convention. Rather, the focus is on the process of amendment, as demonstrated by the language of the Constitutional Convention delegates Morris and Gerry who “moved to amend the article so as to require a Convention on application of 2/3 of the Sts…”. Therefore, Congress is without authority to obstruct a convention in any manner it might attempt, including failing to call for one in a timely fashion as it is required to do.
Last, James Madison addressed Article V in The Federalist No. 43 when he discussed the great value of allowing both Congress and the states to proposed changes in the Constitution:

“‘[t]o provide for amendments to be ratified by three-fourths of the States, under two exceptions only.’ That useful alterations will be suggested by experience, could not but be foreseen. It was requisite therefore that a mode for introducing them should be provided. The mode preferred by the Convention seems to be stamped with ever mark of propriety. It guards equally against that extreme facility which would render the Constitution too mutable; and that extreme difficulty which might perpetuate its discovered faults. It moreover equally enables the general and the state governments to originate the amendment of errors as they may be pointed out by the experience on one side or on the other.”

Clearly, therefore, a convention to propose amendments was intended as a check to regulate excesses of the national government, and it was not intended that the national government could avoid, deny, regulate or otherwise blunt this constitutional check for its own self-interest.

2 Responses to "That Extreme Difficulty Which Might Perpetuate its Discovered Faults"

  1. Monica Sanders   Friday, October 24, 2014 at 7:23 AM

    A constitutional convention would be exceedingly dangerous in today’s climate. The very fact that George Soros is for this and has been pouring money into influence to gain that fact, says it all for me. He (or the feds) plans to hijack this for the NWO. The feds are training all the local police to consider Christians and tea party people to be dangerous. Perhaps that is because we reject satanism and slavery, believe in the rule of law, and because we believe that our freedoms come from our Creator.

  2. ss442   Thursday, October 23, 2014 at 11:43 PM

    One issue of concern is the possibility of a run away convention where these back stabbing oath defying politicians decide what they think is best for us and not follow the plan.

    We can count far more times where we have been lied to and misrepresented than a politician actually following through on promises.

    On what basis should we believe that a constitutional convention will adhere to the premise of the convention? and I base that thought on the fact they do not follow the constitution in the first place.

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