The dangers of a Constitutional Convention…

…is I just thought of another amendment.  Getting in there and fiddling would be a hazard of a convention.

This would create constitutional procedures for legislation in Congress.

All proposed legislation shall be read out loud in chamber prior to being voted on.” (if it’s not read out loud, it’s not law)

and

Every clause shall require identification of the sponsoring member.”  If a court can’t figure out who put a clause or amendment in a bill, it’s not law.

I’m also trying to figure out how to limit the power of seniority, committee chairs and the heads of the chambers.  Barney Frank and Chris Dodd are legislators elected by tiny fractions of the country and should not be able to affect regulatory action on the national scale as they do.  If they want something regulated, they need to create an executive branch or independent regulatory body to do that independent of their individual political influence.  Term limits will help, but Congress needs to be told it is not a regulatory body.

The Constitution currently leaves procedural issue to the separate houses.  In their insatiable quest for power, the houses have demonstrated that they can not be trusted with this authority.  Hence, the Constitution needs to mandate procedures to provide a check on Congress’ zeal.  Not only would this amendment stop the railroading of massive bills through in the middle of the night, it would effectively eliminate earmarks because earmarks can’t be dropped in sight unseen prior to the vote.

Yeah, calling a constitutional convention has its risks.  As long as its charter clearly limits its scope to fixing the abuses of recent events, I think it could be pulled off.  It might not have been worth the risk before, but recent events have lowered that bar.

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1 comment so far

  1. euandus on

    I think a convention would not be a bad idea from the standpoint of deciding whether to go back to a federal system or make the consolidation legal. I’ve just posted at http://euandus3.wordpress.com/2009/10/30/on-the-virtue-of-a-constitutional-moment-reconsidering-the-american-system-of-government/


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