U.S. Constitution Threatened as Article V Convention Movement Nears Success
A Common Cause Background Memo
Posted on April 17, 2017
UPDATED May 14, 2017
a key quote:
Calls for a convention are coming from right and left, with more money, a stronger campaign structure, and national coordination on the right. Several major conservative organizations have renewed and intensified efforts to thrust this issue into the spotlight after years of inactivity. Several Republican presidential candidates and a few governors are starting to comment favorably on the idea.
Mega donors and wealthy special interests are behind the effort to call a constitutional convention
Conservative proponents of a proposed constitutional convention include Ohio Gov. John Kasich, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. A 2017 investigation by Fusion found that the conservative groups pushing for an Article V convention had funding ties to the billionaire Mercer family, known for their close relationships to the Trump administration, and the GOP mega donors Charles and David Koch.
Another major supporter of calling an Article V convention is the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a corporate lobby that masquerades as a charity. ALEC has adopted several Article V convention bills as model legislation and lobbied legislators to support convention bills. ALEC is funded by conservative foundations connected to the Koch brothers as well as its corporate members, including ExxonMobil, Comcast, AT&T, Chevron, Altria, Koch Industries, Pfizer, UPS, Verizon, State Farm Insurance, Peabody Energy, PhRMA, FedEx, and Eli Lilly.
A balanced budget amendment is a wolf in sheep’s clothing
While the threat of a runaway convention is real, many convention proponents deny it –all without one piece of evidence. They claim their one-and-only aim for a convention is adoption of a federal balanced budget amendment (BBA). A BBA is really a wolf in sheep’s clothing that could harm our economy and constitutional process:
MISUSE OF THE CONSTITUTION: The U.S. Constitution should not be used to determine a detailed subject matter that is often subject to change such as fiscal policy. The budgeting process and fiscal policy is foreign to the Constitution’s traditional use and purpose.