Reflections on the Mt. Vernon Assembly
Yesterday, approximately 100 state legislators from over 30 states met at George Washington's home in Mount Vernon, VA. The meeting's purpose was to begin drafting the procedural rules for a Convention of States. I was not present at the gathering (only state legislators were allowed to attend), but earlier in the week I had a face to face conversation with the leadership of the Mount Vernon Assembly.
We are beginning to reach critical mass in our efforts to use Article V of the Constitution to rein in the power of the federal government. The Mount Vernon Assembly is one of the major steps in that effort.
While the work of this group of legislators cannot be binding until actually adopted by a Convention of States, it will be critical to have this work done in advance and to have a majority of the states endorse it in advance. This will ensure the Convention itself can avoid prolonged disputes on the rules and can get right to work on the substance of drafting amendments that limit the power of Washington, D.C.
But there is another, somewhat unfortunate piece of evidence that shows this project is reaching critical mass. Conservative critics of this idea have recently increased both the loudness and shrillness of their long-standing claims that this approach is a dangerous threat to our country through a runaway "Con-Con."
Here is why their arguments are doomed to fail: 1. They are based on faulty history. The original Constitution was not adopted as the result of a runaway convention. Their entire argument is premised on this fallacy. 2. They have to convince state legislators that we can't trust state legislators.
You see, state legislators control the Article V process from beginning to end. The "Con-Con" argument requires state legislators to believe that we should be afraid of state legislators who might abuse their power.
But what's the alternative? These fear-based arguments leave us in the utterly precarious position of trusting Washington, D.C., to right itself.
No one should trust Washington, D.C., more than they trust state legislators. But, at the end of the day, the audience that matters most is state legislators. State legislators certainly trust themselves more than they trust Congress and the rest of the crowd in D.C.
The fear-based arguments are being overcome by the developing consensus of conservative leadership. Mark Levin, Glenn Beck, David Barton, and I all stand shoulder to shoulder to say that we can trust the Founders’ own solution. And that solution is found in Article V--we need to call a Convention of States.
Join us. Make history. Save liberty.