February 25, 2012
Please Forward this to everyone you know!
Arkansas EMERGENCY Legislative ALERT!
SJR 1: Call for an Article V Amendments Convention
Your emails and calls are critical to defeating this measure.
HEARING: Monday, Feb. 27, 2pm, Senate State Agency Committee, Old Supreme Court Room. Please attend and arrive early by 1pm. Your presence is important!
MESSAGE: Vote NO on SJR 1: Do not put our Constitution at risk by asking Congress to “call a Convention for the purpose of proposing amendments.” Article V of the Constitution does not provide any way to limit an “amendments convention.” We don’t trust the politicians with our Constitution. If legislators are sincere about putting a limit on the federal debt then they should refuse all federal funds coming to Arkansas. (more information below)
Please Email or Call the Senators on the State Agency Committee before the hearing at 2pm Monday. It’s particularly important to contact the Democrats.
Gilbert.Baker@Senate.Ar.Gov, Kim.Hendren@Senate.Ar.Gov, Johnny.Key@Senate.Ar.Gov, Bill.Pritchard@Senate.Ar.Gov, firstname.lastname@example.org, David.Johnson@Senate.Ar.Gov, Sue.Madison@Senate.Ar.Gov, Robert.Thompson@Senate.Ar.Gov
R - Sen. Sue Madison, Chair, 479-442-2997
R - Sen. Gilbert Baker, Vice Chair, 501-327-8653
R - Sen. Kim Hendren, 479-787-7500
R - Sen. Bill Pritchard, 479-442-4172, Cell 479-601-5546
D - Sen. Paul Bookout, 870-935-8030
D - Sen. Robert Thompson, 870-215-3141
D - Sen. David Johnson, 501-663-3876
Senate Session Number: 501-682-2902 - Call this number and leave a message for the Senators if you can't call them.
Barry Goldwater said: "[I am] totally opposed [to a Constitutional Convention]...We may wind up with a Constitution so far different from that we have lived under for two hundred years that the Republic might not be able to continue."
SJR 1 is a Call for a Constitutional Convention or an “amendments convention” to consider whether an increase in the federal debt should require approval from a majority of the legislatures of the states. Have you witnessed the ferocious battles in Congress over the debt ceiling? Can you imagine what that same battle would entail in a Constitutional Convention which could put our whole Constitution at risk as the “amendments convention” considers multiple versions and multiple amendments?
There is no way provided in Article V of the U.S. Constitution to limit the number of amendments which can be proposed in an “amendments convention,” even if the states, as in SJR 1 try to limit it. Article V states, “Congress…on the application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments…” (that’s amendments in the plural).
The highest authority to ever speak on an amendments convention was Chief Justice Warren Burger. He said, “I have 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 Constitution is convened, it would be too late to stop the Convention if we don’t like its agenda…Our 1787 Constitution was referred by several of its authors as a ‘miracle.’ Whatever gain might be hoped for from a new Constitutional Convention could not be worth the risks involved…” . http://www.eagleforum.org/topics/concon/pdf/WarrenBurger-letter.pdf
More information from Phyllis Schlafly on a Call for a Constitutional Convention:
Text of SJR1:
State of Arkansas As Engrossed: S2/15/12
88th General Assembly
Fiscal Session, 2012 SJR 1
By: Senators Rapert, G. Baker, Bledsoe, M. Lamoureux, J. Hutchinson, Irvin, G. Jeffress, J. Key, 5 Hendren, Holland, B. Pritchard, J. Taylor, E. Williams, D. Wyatt, Files
By: Representatives Bell, Collins-Smith, Sanders, S. Meeks, D. Meeks, Biviano, Harris, Westerman, D. 7 Altes, Benedict, English, Garner, Hammer, Hubbard, Kerr, Mauch, Stubblefield, Woods, Barnett, 8 Carnine, Collins, Dale, Deffenbaugh, Cozart, Hobbs, Hopper, D. Hutchinson, Johnston, King, Lea Summers
SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION 1
JOINT RESOLUTION APPLYING FOR AN ARTICLE V AMENDMENTS CONVENTION.
JOINT RESOLUTION APPLYING FOR AN ARTICLE V AMENDMENTS CONVENTION.
BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE EIGHTY-EIGHTH GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ARKANSAS AND BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, A MAJORITY OF ALL MEMBERS ELECTED TO EACH HOUSE AGREEING THERETO:
WHEREAS, Article V of the Constitution of the United States provides authority for a convention to be called by the Congress of the United States for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Constitution upon application of two-thirds (2/3) of the legislatures of the several states ("amendments convention"); and
WHEREAS, the General Assembly of the State of Arkansas favors the proposal and ratification of an amendment to the Constitution which shall provide that an increase in the federal debt require(s) approval from a majority of the legislatures of the separate states.
BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE EIGHTY-EIGHTH GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ARKANSAS, THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CONCURRING THEREIN:
THAT, as provided for in Article V of the Constitution of the United States, the General Assembly of the State of Arkansas herewith respectfully apply for an amendments convention to be called for the purpose of proposing an amendment which shall provide that an increase in the federal debt require approval from a majority of the legislatures of the separate states,
THAT the amendments convention contemplated by this application shall be entirely focused upon and exclusively limited to the subject matter of proposing for ratification an amendment to the Constitution providing that an increase in the federal debt require approval from a majority of the legislatures of the separate states, and
THAT this application constitutes a continuing application in accordance with Article V of the Constitution of the United States until at least two-thirds (2/3) of the legislatures of the several states have made application for an equivalently limited amendments convention.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT a certified copy of this application be dispatched by the Secretary of State of Arkansas to the President of the United States Senate, to the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, to each member of Arkansas's delegation to the United States Congress, and to the presiding officer of each house of the several state legislatures, requesting their cooperation in applying for the amendments convention limited to the subject matter contemplated by this application.