tmccarthy0's picture


    There comes a time in the life of a nation when it is time to make choices, how are we going to institute effective change and reform our badly broken government. We now have a Legislative Branch filled with spoiled schoolyard children, who would prefer to see the country slip past the point of no-return, where they would prefer their citizens to be destitute and desperate in order to gain more and more power.

    We certainly cannot rely on our legislative branch to put aside their ideological differences in order to do something for the country. They refuse; we've seen them, over and over and over again. We could never get them to reform the gerrymandering of congressional districts; we will never get them to put money into the country, hell that money that they throw around in Iraq and Afghanistan and they give away to oil companies, is our money, why can’t we use it to stimulate our economy here, at home. And why do those bozos constantly get away with enriching billionaires and corporations even more, as if they don’t have enough, which has been to the detriment of the entire nation! What the hell, it is outrageous! They don't even care, they flaunt it, they laugh in our faces and say cut taxes on the wealthy and corporations but and they say on the floor of the US Senate, the poor simply don't pay enough. What????? What civilized nation has representatives like this? Oh, I don't think they do. In a civilized nation those people would be laughed out of public office, not here though, they win another term in congress.

    Well protestors nationwide, we have an opportunity to effect change ourselves, it is time we used the very document these folks go on and on about every day, we must make our state legislature call for a Constitutional Convention and we will amend our constitution without them, we have an opportunity, you've started something, let's direct it toward fundamental change in our government.

    The second method prescribed is for a Constitutional Convention to be called by two-thirds of the legislatures of the States, and for that Convention to propose one or more amendments. These amendments are then sent to the states to be approved by three-fourths of the legislatures or conventions. This route has never been taken, and there is discussion in political science circles about just how such a convention would be convened, and what kind of changes it would bring about.

    Suggestions for Amendments:

    1. Amendment 28: The Public funding of elections,  30 days to campaign, advertising can only be through the public funding, no outside groups can run advertisements for or against candidates, you see what I am getting at,  no outside money, nothing, zero zip. Oh so yeah, add somewhere in this Amendment this is explicitly to repeal the citizen united ruling as well. So they can't find some way around the amendment.

    2. Term Limits for Legislators: 3 terms for H.o.R. 2 terms for Senators. They don't need any more time than that.

    3. Can we throw in the outlawing of the filibuster too? Cause these folks have simply abused the privilege to use this parliamentary tactic of obstruction.

    4. We need to consider term limits for members of the Supreme Court. 20 years. No more. No one is grandfathered out.

    CrossPosted at TheAngriestLiberal


    A constitutional convention would be a disaster if held BEFORE money is banned from politics. Get the money out and everything good will follow. Your Amendment 28 -- no convention needed.

    We have to use Option 2 in calling for the convention to amend the constitution without congress. But yeah... it could totally backfire without finding a way to get the money out of politics, which seems like some utopian dream, which is not like me at all. *shrugs shoulders*

    I have to edit my post, I have two number 3's.. hahaha

    No truer words spoken!

    I'd prefer 10 year terms for Supreme Court justices.  Much easier to endure idiots like Scalia and Thomas if you know it'll only be for a decade rather than a major part of your adult life.

    Getting a Constitutional Convention voted for by 2/3 of the state's legislatures is a lot more daunting now than it was 200 years ago when you only needed, what, 8-10 states to agree?.  Sadly, 33 or 34 states agreeing on anything seems almost unimaginable nowadays ... unless ... you did a 'bait and switch' and told them it was either about "States Rights" or "Outlawing Abortion" and then when the convention started, you ripped off the fake cover sheet and they realized it was actually a convention to consider Progressive amendments such as the ones you suggest. Now, THAT might work.   ;-)




    Oh yes it would be tough, very tough indeed to get 2/3rds of the state legislatures to call for a convention. I wonder if it could be done by a state by state initiative process? But I still think it would be easier to get done this way than through our stagnated congress!

    10 years sounds fine.

    I'd go for a well planned bait and switch... whatever it takes!

    Rather than amending the constitution, wouldn't it be easier to elect a President who vetoed ridiculous people-unfriendly bills?


    No example, just that it takes a majority in the electoral college to get a president.

    It takes 2/3 the legislatures & 2/3 of Congress to change the constitution.

    With my basic Jethro Bodine math knowledge, I think naughts go to the presidential option.

    Besides of which:

    1) how many candidates have looked sane for 30 days and then self-destructed. One month in the public light is certainly not enough - the public generally stays enthralled with losers that long.

    2) Revoking Citizen's United ruling would keep MoveOn from doing anti-Rick Perry commercials, or any group of bloggers from pitching coins together to finance a smarmy YouTube - is that as far as our 1st amendment rights go?

    3) the filibuster used to be used for Democratic causes. Actually, Republicans haven't used the filibuster much because Democrats just assume they'll use it and cave ahead of time. Smart tactics, huh?

    4) What is the logic behind term limits for the Supreme Court? In the current court, it would have meant Scalia and Anthony Kennedy would have both been replaced by Bush. John Paul Stevens would have been replaced by Clinton, so we wouldn't have Kegan. Souter retired after 19 years, so Sotomayor would have stayed.

    Other than that, we'd still have Roberts & Alito for another 15 years, Clarence Thomas would retire in October, and we'd have a quick 2 justices for the next presidential term, whoever gets elected.

    I mean an example of a people-unfriendly bill that Obama should have vetoed.

    Extension of tax cuts for the rich? Extension of Patriot Act? Watered down stimulus bill? Immunity for Bankers & Mortgage Lenders Act?

    And then there's Obama & Holder's incongruous attack on medical marijuana, just as for the first time a majority of Americans favor legalization for whatever reason.

    What's gotten into this man? Instead of giving up ciggies, he should be chilling out with a spleef. The dude's hair is on fire. Way uncool. Maybe he should check with the California Medical Association. And a get a scrip for something more mellow.

    I have already posted this but of course I agree that we will have to go the constitutional option.  It is unrealistic with all of the money in politics to imagine that we will get elected representatives that will change the course of things when they are the recipients of all of this money and power.

    I prefer to support Dylan Ratigan's amendement movement  He knows how hard it will be and he is being realistic in his approach and willing to perfect the amendment in the process.  This amendment is to get big money out our elections and lobbying.  As an ex-Wall Street guy he has been one of the most outraged by what has been happening.

    I am also supporting the effort to resolve that corporations are not people and money is not free speech.  I wish the occupy movements would Occupy the Supreme Court and support attention being put on Justice Thomas and the recent effort, very longshot of course, to get a retroactive recusal for the Citizens United decision so that it fails retroactively.  But barring that many people have determined it will take an amendment to the constitution to change the effects of that decision.

    I also think if we are going to go the amendment route as far as a convention goes we might want to consider something that requires our elections to be verifiable and perhaps requiring all states to do everything in their power to ensure that all eligible voters are able to vote ... not great wording but you get the point... something to discourage and disallow voter suppression laws.

    I would rather start climbing the mountain of the route to change via constitutional amendment than wait around for things to change in our politics that have been poisoned by the big money  I simply don't see any incentive regardless of how much we demonstrate and attempt to put pressure on them for the elite to change the way things are for them.  They may throw us a bone here and there to appease us and get us to shut up and be less threatening but I don't see them giving up a dime or lessening their advantages... they just don't have to. 

    So, I'll see you on the amendment to the constitution mountain trail... long climb but in the end hopefully a beautiful view.

    No Way!No Way!No Way!No Way!No Way!No Way!No Way!

    Think very seriously about what you're proposing !!!!

    First ,

    "... To those not familiar with the con-con movement, the latter question may sound fantastic. Yet 32 state legislatures (just two short of what was needed) called for a con-con to draft a balanced budget amendment during the 1970s and early ’80s. And now, Georgetown University law professor Randy Barnett and Tea Party leader Michael Patrick Leahy are calling for a constitutional convention. They claim that a con-con is needed to get the federal government back under control. Yet if such a convention would be called, there would be no way of controlling what it might or might not do — from proposing the specific amendments sought by Barnett to drafting an entirely new constitution ..."

    Entirely new constitution ... did you get that? Entirely different from what we have today.

    Here's why it's a very bad idea,

    "... in a nutshell, the argument against calling for a constitutional convention is that once convened, such a convention would be free to consider and propose whatever amendments to the Constitution that it deemed beneficial. Which is to say that such a convention could become a “runaway convention” in much the same way that the Constitutional Convention that produced our current U.S. Constitution was a runaway convention that disregarded the guidelines under which it was convened. While most Americans are very thankful for the Constitution produced by our original Constitutional Convention in 1787, most Americans and certainly most state legislators, when fully informed of the downsides involved, oppose the convening of a new constitutional convention in our day ..."

    It opens the door for the GOPer's, tea-baggers, anti-abortionist, evangelicals and religious right as well as what's left of the John Birch Society to have a field day at our expense. So simply amending the Constitution via a Con-Con wouldn't guarantee we would get the government back under control .. we'd actually loose the one we have.

    Here's Warren Burger, former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, arguing along the same lines when he vigorously opposed convening a constitutional convention  on June 22, 1988:

    "I have also repeatedly given my opinion that there is no effective way to limit or muzzle the actions of a Constitutional Convention. The Convention could make its own rules and set its own agenda. Congress might try to limit the Convention to one amendment or to one issue, but there is no way to assure that the Convention would obey. After a Convention is convened, it will be too late to stop the Convention if we don't like its agenda. The meeting in 1787 ignored the limit placed by the Confederation Congress "for the sole and express purpose."

    It's not a prudent choice. Given the present-day general lack of knowledge of both the Constitution and the original intent by our Congress critters today as well as a majority of the public, coupled with the inordinate influence of very biased elites controlling our political processes, the chances are that the output of a constitutional convention today with its' subsequent ratification process (lots of state legislations are GOPer/tea-bagger controlled and they've already taken a hatch to state laws they view are too liberal)  could change our Constitution for the worse.

    Better to work from within rather than chip away at the exterior ... you might crack the stone and end up with another one of a different texture that makes your tools are entirely useless.


    You are so very right in your concerns as expressed. I mean, wrap your arms around this question: "How much money do you suppose the Koch Brothers would be willing to spend for the privilege of re-writing our Constitution?"

    I'm guessing ALEC has already got a template for just such an "opportunity."

    In your objections, you give WAY too much credit to legislators as simply being simpletons and not the wholly owned corporate tools that they are. But the end result is the same. The political system is broke, not our Constitution. And to suggest throwing the future of the Constitution wide open by casting it to the whims and the control of the corrupt political system is completely daft!

    The delegates to such a convention would be determine by each state. If not appointed by governors and state representatives (which would be ideologically set for a specific political end-game, it would mean a public election which would attract monied interest to secure as many delegates over as many states as possible so as to steer the new constitution in the direct they desire, not the publics. We may go into a Con-Con with great expectation only to discover at the end our withered hopes vanquished and all our hand-hold removed without an exit strategy to fall back on. And revenge in the eyes of the victors.

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