Should we Have a Constitutional Convention?
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Should we Have a Constitutional Convention?

David Cobb is on the line with us the
national spokesperson for moved to a man former Green Party candidate for
president United States moved to amend .org course the website that I am
constantly ranting about on this program David welcome back thank you thomas
thanks for all that good ranting I can always a Salehi you you are definitely at the
cutting edge of corporate personhood out here and asking well thank you in the hustings why
haven’t heard that phrase in a while are it be David how do I want to talk
with you about a constitutional conventions and
about how we get amendments into the Constitution I have
heard and red conflicting information and genuine I’ve had this conversation
before and I never really clearly understood it and and be love you know i i know that if congress you know if a if a
constitutional amendment is presented by Congress to Congress and then it you know and and passes
congress and you can tell me what kinda majority is necessary in in either or both houses on then they
send out to the states and I think it’s too there’s a congressman records the
state’s is not at that’s right it taught me if I could
let’s just make sure that worker there ratifying any proposal the South Station
will require three quarters at the state legislatures
I had to agree three quarters at the state’s could be
due to legislative pronouncement the do a statewide vote that
three-quarters of the state’s mast agrees so it’s a heavy political left to
propose amendments there are two way under Article five
better clearly left-outs number Wireless
two-thirds up congress can agree upon specific language at
which point he goes to the states for ratification process or surges states can call for a
constitutional convention at which point whatever comes out of
that convention can be must be sent to the states for
ratification and therein lies the rub we’ve only ever used two-thirds as congressional approval for proposing
amendments be questions conventions is to reason
that there’s some confusion it because it’s never been done before
the competition Isidore scholars have some different that the
10-year about whether you can have a quote limited subject Constitutional
Convention war our weather any constitutional
convention must by definition the completely wide open for any
consideration okay remember that no matter what I’m out at the convention it’s still
there fast three-quarters of the states to ratify
before is s and that’s not just so the convention is actually a buncha
people getting together and saying let’s work on this CSI me that this is the interesting
thing area because the Constitution itself is silent we have to look to state conventions we
have to look I to legal scholars I N constitutional
scholars and had been to as you have of a dancer the federalist papers and other places
where we can understand what the founders sorta had intended by it okay well
here’s here’s what provoked this this confusion on my part and I might have
simply been a misinformed caller I had a caller couple weeks ago hoop
represent himself as an attorney who said that I mean a typically it
takes a long time for constitutional a moment to pass a a great example the
27th a yeah it was originally proposed on
september twenty-fifth 1789 and was ratified on may seventh nineteen
ninety-two its puppet yes took almost two hundred
years and packager 242 103 years arm on the other hand this fellow said
the 26th amendment was proposed in March 23rd is 71 and was ratified on july
first to seventy 71 so that’s like four months March
April May June July it for months and and he said the reason it was proposed in ratified so quickly
was because three fourths up the state’s had already past resolutions or proposals or whatever i’m saying yes we
will vote for this and so when congress took the thing up
they already knew it was a done deal and it passed very very quickly and it
was an example of a constitutional amendment basically being driven from the state’s
up to congress rather than from congress down to the state’s arm a can you speak to that yes I V I think that said I would agree
with their that the at when you have States ready to go
to ratify I that means that there is already there
political will and the political agreements I bet that that various inherent in that
process so a ratification could in fact take
place a quickly but I will point out that under that
circumstances still require two-thirds had their Congress to propose at the language
itself so I it doesn’t degree in FY where what to do around the convention
so three quarters the state’s past a constitutional amendment saying
that you know money is not found in the first
amendment not protected by the First Amendment in
corporations are not found in the 14 them an opportunity for forty the
MoMA on just read a very simple language
something that the majority of Americans agree with if three quarters the state’s past that
as a constitutional amendment that does not force the United States
Congress to take it up and call for a
three-quarter vote her to there’s about that that’s correct unfortunately it
does not that’s why what we at route and then say to imagine I truck trail our past at some point you we’re going to come to a I fork in the
road that says I is the proposal going to come from
two-thirds of congress or two-thirds of the states calling for
a convention itself that two-thirds to three-quarters have
the state’s a two-thirds remember that that the proposal it’s a ratification is
three-quarters a States propose in the constitutional
conventions two-thirds congress yes for two-thirds of the state’s okay
the point is that we know that we have a lot of
political row to travel we had a lot of educating to do we got a
lot of work to do we got a lot of work and I think you can so that’s what we’re doing we at culture
and are and FF about a wetter congress or estate convention at this
point because we don’t think we bill the political will the political
pressure and one way we know this is that almost every candidate for
office has refused to take a formal position on corporate constitutional
rights right and we’re not fussed about it
we’re just doing the work educating organizing an agitating and ultimately
we’re gonna make this a political question that no candidate for office
turned away right and then candidates for office
will will aggressively get behind it because they will see that the parade is
big enough that they need to jump in front with a flag arm the metaphor we paid discussed
before arm so David does it not give you the creeps
the idea that there might be I can mention that it
completely opens up the entire constitution to tinkering in an era when now I’m in many states the majority of
the legislators are actually owned by a couple billionaires yeah of course it does and I want to be
clear about this time if I could push a button and make a constitutional convention
happen tomorrow not only would I not push that button I
would guard that button with my life to make sure that nobody
else question and that’s for that reason clear yes to that very reason we because
we’re not ready that people United States of America are are ready we haven’t done the work
upcoming engage citizens what thomas jefferson I yeah described it you know that in the
concept of the young and farmer idea I’ll self-reliant people who
understand their role as sovereigns I in this
government and structure so we are beginning that process you
really do think it’s a 10-20 year process to really get ourselves to that
that staging I N so we don’t think that just having a
convention tomorrow it’s something that we want to advocate for what we’re
advocating for is the abolition to be illegitimate
court created idea state corporations have inherent
inalienable talk to strike and that money is not speech those two
things Tom are going to be a menace to the cops
should year contract it will either come because we have
completely changed congress or because we have completely changed
state legislators and that the work that we ought to just get
a kid ourselves same way the American revolutionaries did the
women’s suffrage movement the tracheal tube the civil rights group much just
knowledge that the level up political cultural spiritual work we can
get him to where the david and we’re doing that here on this program move to
a man not a lie David Cobb thank you David effect on
thanks for all you do keep up the great work when this is the
Thom Hartmann program ads move to Amanda dot or and so you know as they were so we gotta wake
everybody up if you can just wake up three or four people that’s a big first step


  • Jordan Brown

    In the words of Cenk Uygur. Screw congress, just go for a convention. Besides the fear of a runaway convention is just used to scare people from going towards a convention, you still need 3 quarters of the states (38 in total) to ratified this amendment so your not going get a crazy amendment that bans gay marriage or abortion. The one issue that unites progressives, liberals, libertarians, conservatives, tea partiers is your elected leaders have become corrupted by corporate interested and money. Wolf-Pac or Move to Amend.

  • charliedotcoop

    Building towards a convention is a really good way to do the work David Cobb is talking about.  You have to mobilize and education thousands of people in order to get state legislators to make the call for the convention.  It's so much more concrete than the nebulous "organizing and educating" that David is talking about that it becomes much easier to do the very work he is calling for.

    45 states have open convention calls and yet Congress has not called one.  This is strong evidence that a convention is limited.  Also, a movement that gets 34 state legislatures to call for a convention will be a great constraint on the convention delegates to limit topics to those relevant to free and fair elections.

  • k001daddy

    The fear of a runaway convention is a myth spread by the John Birtch Society. Anything that you can get 75% of state legislatures to agree on surely belongs in our Constitution. The only thing that 3/4ths of the country agrees on is getting money out of politics.

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