Alabama Policy Institute is calling for a constitutional convention under the 5th Amendment to correct the abuse of power by the Democrat-led Congress demonstrated by the recent passage of the Health Care Reform legislation. API’s intentions are no doubt good, but their proposed means is not.
Nevertheless, API President Gary Palmer does make some legitimate observations:
At least 36 states have introduced legislation against the implementation of the act. These actions, known as nullification, fail to address the major problem and have limited chance of success. Nullification is designed to persuade Congress to alter its action; this Congress appears immune to persuasion.
Other states have sued, claiming that the act is unconstitutional. These efforts will likely be futile because of the federal courts’ expansive reading of federal power.
Even if they are successful, repealing one act does little to address Congress’s habitual overreaching. The best course may be for the states to petition under Article V to amend the Constitution by calling a convention.
It’s that last phrase–calling a convention–that is troublesome. As with the Constitutional Convention of 1787, such a convention is a Pandora’s box. Once opened those chosen to participate from each state can rewrite the Constitutional anyway they like. No limits exist to what they may do or to what extent they may rewrite the fundamental law of the land.
Because politicians, most of whom are lawyers, are not trustworthy;
because the corruption in law and politics resembles the British government at the time of the Revolution; and because too many people vote based on the kick back in money, power or some other personal benefit they will receive, a convention presents too much potential danger to allow.
It is true as noted by Palmer that the proposed changes to the Constitution must to accepted by three-fourths of the states. Yet, a majority of the states voted in the current abusers of power. A majority of states and their representatives believe in the socialist cause of the same.
A similar and safer method would be to seek to amend the Constitution to prevent further abuse of power by federal politicians and those employees who circulate though the various related institutions. They are often the brains behinds the abuse of power as lobbyists and elected deal-makers. The amendment process does not require a closed door free-for-all convention.
The fact that Palmer quotes Alexander Hamilton makes me a little queasy. For it was Hamilton and his like-minded investors who thwarted the Constitution in their efforts to establish a federal bank corporation. Even though the official convention record keeper failed to record the debate on the day of it final determination, others like James Madison did record the debates concerning a federal bank and federal power of incorporation. Their records clearly show a majority decision against giving the federal government authority to incorporate and particularly federal bank. How convenient of the official record keeper.
Today, we have federally incorporated Federal Reserve, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, all recession producing corporations.