Pursuant to Article V of the Constitution of the United States, House Concurrent Resolution 2017 applies to Congress to “call a convention for proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States to require that the Congress adopt a balanced federal budget.” In essence, HCR 2017 is a request for a balanced budget amendment or BBA, by way of an Article V Convention. House Bill 2305 calls for another much more complex approach for an Article V Con-Con, for the purpose of proposing a BBA, known as a “Compact for America” (CFA). House Bill 2433 deals with the allocation and supposed limitations on delegates selected to attend a modern-day “convention of the states” or Con-Con, if convened by Congress.However noble these proposed efforts to apply to Congress to call an Article V Convention to pass a BBA to the U.S. Constitution might be, it would unlikely improve the state of either the federal government or the economy.A call to balance the budget could go ignored due to a “national emergency,” as specifically mentioned in the text of HCR 2017. A “national emergency” could easily cover a broad array of circumstances, such as a war, like the current and recent U.S. wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and other military operations throughout the Middle East and Africa, or some other crisis. In such an event as this, spending would continue to increase and the budget would remain unbalanced.
A BBA could also easily create the conditions forcing Congress to raise taxes, in the event that overall spending increased with insufficient or no cuts made in the budget. Indeed, the U.S. House Continuing Resolution of October 2013 HR2775, suspended the federal debt limit through February 7, 2014! The president may then spend in unlimited fashion! Most calls for a BBA have no stipulation to prohibit the federal government from raising taxes.
There is also the possibility that a BBA to the Constitution would be ignored, much like the other amendments have been, especially the first ten (or Bill of Rights).
There is currently no talk in the proposed Convention of States for ENFORCING the terms of the Tenth Amendment (or ’10 Limitations on Government’).
The most important reason for defeating HCR 2017, HB 2305, and HB 2433 is that the Article V convention of the states that they call for cannot be limited, by either Congress or state legislators, to the consideration of only one amendment, and could in fact become a “runaway convention” that could lead to unpredictable harmful changes to the Constitution. The Article V state convention amendment process was added to the Constitution by the Founding Fathers for the purpose of providing a way for future Americans to overturn an oppressive federal government. This means that an Article V convention could not be limited, or it could never succeed in empowering the states to regain control of the government by revising or replacing the Constitution.
However, our situation today is that the Constitution is not defective, but rather that the federal government is not adhering to the Constitution. The fix for our situation is not to change the Constitution, but to educate voters to elect more constitutionalists to Congress, who would vote for laws to bring the federal government back into compliance with the Constitution. Congressional compliance with the Constitution would greatly reduce federal spending and lead to balanced budgets.
Although called to strengthen and centralize the national government, the Philadelphia Convention of 1787 was convened to amend the Articles of Confederation rather than replace them. We were lucky then, seeing as the convention resulted in such an excellent Constitution. We were also fortunate to have had enlightened statesmen and drafters, such as James Madison, who understood the Lockean virtues and principles of individual liberty and limited government. Looking back, who among us today comes close to exemplifying the virtues of our Founding Fathers?
The answer is too few and far between, if any at all. The proposal for a second constitutional convention (aka Article V convention, ‘Convention of States’) promoted by many conservatives today, could easily result in a runaway convention in which moderate and progressive elements could hijack the convention and alter the Constitution to include harmful amendments, such as “second generation” or “positive” socialist rights while curtailing our nation’s traditional negative rights that protect our liberties from the government. Such a runaway convention would have the power, just as the convention of 1787 did, to prescribe its own method for ratification of its proposed amendments. This means that the supposed safety net of the currently required ratification by three-fourths of the states could be replaced with a much less rigorous requirement.
To understand why a constitutional convention would be dangerous, click here to view the video
, Beware of Con-Cons: State Legislators Warn Against a Constitutional Convention
What we need is not for the States to revise the Constitution, but rather to restore and enforce it as our Founding Fathers originally intended (for more information, click here
for a free PDF article download
We should not risk the passage of an Article V convention call no matter how appealing it may be. You now have the ability to help preserve the Constitution by helping to stop Arizona from calling upon Congress to authorize such a convention. Contact your state representative and senator now and ask them to oppose the passage of HCR 2017, HB 2305, and HB 2433 and to vote NAY on these bills.
Scroll down to send a suggested, message you can edit. Be sure to personalize your message for maximum impact.
Phone calls can also be very effective, and of course, the most effective way to educate your state legislators is by making personal visits to their offices. Click here
for contact information.