The issue of the state legislatures holding an Article V convention to propose amendments has divided people that typically agree on many issues into two completely different camps. One totally favors it, and the other is adamantly opposed
You may find yourself in one of these camps, or perhaps you are still researching the issue before deciding whether to support an Article V convention.
My purpose in writing this series is to do a deep dive into this hotly debated topic and, by doing so, demonstrate that the opponents’ claims against the Article V convention are entirely unfounded and cannot hold up to constitutional scrutiny, history, or our political reality.
In most cases, these attacks against the Framers and our amending provision are designed to paralyze legislators with fear to prevent them from using their constitutional authority to propose needed reforms at the federal level. These conspiratorial opponents are harming our country by blocking the states from introducing such reforms, which only protects The Establishment in Washington, D.C., while silencing the voice of the American people.
On a personal note, initially, I was a victim of this fear campaign. As a result, I opposed any Article V convention because of the misleading information I received from The John Birch Society (JBS). However, once I examined their claims by reading Madison’s notes at the 1787 Federal Convention, letters of correspondence between the Framers during the period 1786-1790, the Federalist Papers, the debates in the 1st Congress on amendments, Virginia’s Article V application for a bill of rights, and discussions in the state ratifying conventions, I quickly realized that everything JBS was peddling was a lie, so I decided to embrace the Article V convention and began working on having one called. For more information on the hypocrisy of The John Birch Society, check out my YouTube Channel, All Things Article V. I have documented the effort by JBS to call an Article V convention for The Liberty Amendment, along with exposing their conspiratorial foundation and history.
During my research, I stumbled across this great quote by George Washington describing the tactics used by the Anti-federalists to oppose the ratification of the Constitution.
“The opponents, I expected, (for it has ever been, that the adversaries to a measure are more active than its friends)would endeavour to give it an unfavourable complexion, with a view to biass the public mind. This, evidently, is the case with the writers in opposition; for their objections are better calculated to alarm the fears, than to convince the judgment of their readers. They build them upon principles which do not exist in the Constitution—which the known & litteral sense of it, does not support them in; and this too, after being flatly told that they are treading on untenable ground and after an appeal has been made to the letter, & spirit thereof, for proof: and then, as if the doctrine was uncontrovertable, draw such consequences as are necessary to rouse the apprehensions of the ignorant, & unthinking. It is not the interest of the major part of these characters to be convinced;” George Washington to Bushrod Washington, 9 November 1787.
There is nothing new under the sun, and the opponents employ the same deceitful tactics today to prevent state legislatures from proposing needed amendments. Recently, I testified in New Hampshire before the House State-Federal Relations and Veterans Affairs Committee in support of an Article V convention application limited to amendments for term limits, fiscal restraints, and jurisdictional limitations on the federal government. In my testimony, I expose the tactics of these opponents.
The Framers of our Constitution understood human nature and the need to have checks and balances for our government to function properly. The convention mode gives the state legislatures the ultimate check against a runaway federal government.
I plan to unpack my defense of the convention for proposing amendments slowly and methodically by laying out the true history of the 1787 Federal Convention and the original intent of the convention mode under Article V.
I hope you will join me.