To: Rep. Perry, L.,
Subject: RE Constitutional Convention
Dear State Reps,
There is talk of a constitutional convention in the Utah State Legislature. I have a few concerns about this idea. Let me ask you a few questions for your consideration of this important issue of changing our constitution by way of a con-con.
1) According to Article V, Congress is supposed to call the convention. Who would decide how many delegates each state gets? Would each state get the same number of delegates that its state has in the House of Representatives? (Utah getting 4 and California getting a million delegates.) Are these questions that State legislatures are charged with deciding or does Article V say the Congress decides? Do you trust the US Congress to do anything?
2) If it is in fact the State Legislatures that will run the "con-con", do you trust the State Legislatures of the states to preserve the freedoms you love? Do you trust the Utah State legislature itself to preserve the freedoms you enjoy in the constitution? I think the Utah State Legislature has many great individuals but I do not trust ANYONE to take a hacksaw and negotiate my freedoms away - they are God-given. What makes us think that things will not be thrown in as is always the case.
3) Proponents of the convention say that one great security against a runaway convention is that only 13 states have to choose not to ratify thus virtually guaranteeing that bad amendments won't be ratified. Can you name those 13 states you can count on to oppose such bad amendments? The 16th and 17th amendments were passed with similar safeguards in place. Why didn't enough states stand up against those amendments to prevent their ratification?
The constitution to me is sacrosanct and inspired by God in order to keep men free to choose there own fate in life. I believe Article V was put into the constitution for the purpose of fixing any flaws or oversite in the constitution itself, if any, and not to be used to fix our government from disobeying the constitution. The constitution already has safeguards in it to keep the debt from going out of control, to keep the powers of the world from running amok and the problem is not the constitution, but that it is not being followed. Changing the constitution to "today's standards" will only legitimize and make more legal the acts of those running amok and breaking their oaths of office. A con-con will "fix" something that is not broken; the constitution. Bad amendments need to be repealed and not the constitution.