The following article was written by Bob Unruh and published on WND.com.
The Washington elite in recent weeks have destroyed traditional marriage across America, have redefined English words to save Obamacare, have proposed regulations that could put your backyard under inspections by the EPA, have pulled off a deal critics say will grant the rogue Islamists in Iran nuclear weapons and more.
Too much more even to list.
How would you like to see a process to reverse those decisions? To TELL Washington what it’s actually going to do. Think that’s an impossible dream? Just check out Article 5.
Officials with Convention of States, a project of Citizens for Self-Governance, say the U.S. Constitution already provides a solution that gives citizens of the U.S. a way to bypass Congress, decide what direction the nation will go and then announce marching orders.
Fix Washington so that those deficit budgets are a thing of the past. So that Washington’s interference in local school-board curriculum decisions is gone. So that those orders for you to buy the health insurance Washington bureaucrats think you need no longer exist. So that a “federal government … drunk with the abuses of power” is reined in.
Article 5 of the U.S. Constitution provides for a Convention of States which can amend the U.S. Constitution – for example, by demanding a balanced budget. Or simply removing the issue of marriage from the jurisdiction of the courts. Or how about eliminating the federal Department of Education entirely? Simply having it no longer there.
The article is an alternative to having Congress proposed amendments.
It allows that those changes also can be proposed – they’d have to be ratified by three-fourths of the states ultimately – “on the application of the legislatures of two-thirds of the several states.”
The Convention of States website explains that the Founders provided the alternative, through which the states “can stop the federal spending and debt spree, the power grabs of the federal courts, and other misuses of federal power.”
“The current situation is what precisely what the Founders feared, and they gave us a solution we have a duty to use,” organizers explain.
Sen. Tom Coburn, who represented Oklahoma in the U.S. Senate before leaving just recently, said the convention has become a necessity, because of Washington’s perpetual overreach.
“We won’t fix it any other way,” he told WND. “Washington will never give up its power. It takes more every year, either through the bureaucratic branch, or through the courts.”
While he was in Washington, he said, he identified $400 billion in unnecessary spending every year, but could not eliminate it because of those in Congress who were not about to deprive their own constituencies.
“It’s a catastrophe,” he told WND. “The only way to do it is a Convention of States.”
Mark Meckler, president of the Citizens for Self-Governance, told WND, “We clearly have a runaway presidency, and a Supreme Court that enables that. … Congress has no spine.”
The convention, he said, is the only mechanism for Americans to regain religious freedom, empower states with the rights given to them in the Constitution and more.
He said the current plan is to bring together representatives of the states to consider three issues: Fiscal restraints on the federal government, the imposition of limits on the scope and jurisdiction of the federal government, and term limits for federal officials, including members of the U.S. Supreme Court.
The actual practical portions of the plan could be the elimination of the Department of Education or the Department of Energy.
States could define that “The federal government has no role in education,” he said.
They also could simply terminate the massive promulgation of millions of pages of federal rules by imposing a requirement that Congress authorize each and every rule.
Coburn said the requirements are straightforward – at least two-thirds of the states (34) must approve identical resolutions calling for a convention. After that, Congress, which cannot stop the plan, must arrange for the particulars.
Four states already have passed the resolution, and it’s been introduced in dozens more already this year.
The goal, he said, is to return the federal government to the few dozen powers specifically given to the government in the Constitution. The rest of the responsibilities are supposed to rest with the states and their populations.
“Our Founders intended for the laboratories of democracy [the states] to work these things out,” he said.
Meckler said some big names have endorsed the idea – from Mark Levin and Sean Hannity to Allen West and presidential candidates Mike Huckabee and Bobby Jindal.
He warned that there literally is no other mechanism to restrain Washington, but hope springs, since there already has developed support for the plan from 97 percent of the state legislative districts from coast to coast.
The organization announced that the draft rules for a Convention of States were revealed recently to several hundred state lawmakers meeting in San Diego.
“The legislators, along with many more all across the nation, have been invited to participate in the Convention of the States Caucus,” it said.
With that move, it has advanced beyond what any other group ever has done in support of such a convention.
“While other groups have talked about proposing rules, we are the only ones who actually took action and produced a working draft. And we already have 119 charter members signed on to help review and revise,” it announced.
The project was launched by Meckler and Michael Farris, who also is chancellor of Patrick Henry College and chairman of the Home School Legal Defense Association.
Sarah Palin has endorsed the move, pointing out that it is “the tool that people have to rein in government.”
Jindal said, “Over-spending, excessive regulatory overreach and disdain for individual liberty all run rampant in Washington, D.C. Luckily, the Founders gave us a mechanism to reform a runaway federal government … We can – and we must – scale back the monstrosity that our federal government has become.”
Huckabee said the plan is both innovative and realistic.
According to the Jefferson Statement, which was adopted just a year ago in Washington by former members of the Reagan administration, seasoned Supreme Court litigators, Ivy League professors and more, the national leaders believe the Article 5 procedure is the only constitutionally effective means of fixing the nation.
Their statement said, “We share the Founders’ conviction that proper decision-making structures are essential to preserve liberty. We believe that the problems facing our nation require several structural limitations on the exercise of federal power. While fiscal restraints are essential, we believe the most effective course is to pursue reasonable limitations, fully in line with the vision of our Founders, on the federal government.”
It explains some of the top legal minds in the nation also have promoted the plan.