#ConCon 101
The concept of a Constitutional Convention is foreign to many people. Understandable, since we've only had one in the entire history of the United States and it produced The Constitution. So I thought I'd write this thread to try make it understandable to everyone.
For anyone who doesn't want to or doesn't have the time to read this whole thread, I am also posting ConCon 101 EZ and ConCon 101 EZ+ which are much quicker. The purpose of this thread? #NoConCon
To convince you how vital it is for our country's future to oppose ANY state resolutions for ANY type of #ConCon. They are all dangerous for Democrats. #NoConCon
The is Article V from the Constitution which explains the modes of achieving an amendment. #NoConCon
From Article V above:
This is Article I, Section 9, 1st and 4th clauses which don't seem relevant today. #NoConCon
The other way to pass an amendment is to hold a Constitutional Convention (sometimes referred as a Convention of States, but I find that confusing since one of the organizations promoting a #ConCon uses that name). #NoConCon
Delegates? Really? Do we want delegates rewriting The Constitution?
Yeah, those state delegates that attend their party Conventions. This is 2016:
From the CNN article:
Delegates are not allowed to accept funds and contributions from corporations, foreign nationals, labor organizations or federal government contractors. But so-called nonprofit organizations? #NoConCon
Using the "triad" campaign finance scheme, which involves setting up shell corporations, which are tax exempt & funneling money there in order to avoid campaign finance disclosure laws. It is estimated the Koch Bros set a spending goal of $889 million for the 2016 election cycle.
Aside from the limits of who can give, the FEC is mostly silent on what delegates may or may not accept. And it doesn't speak to any sort of negotiation for positions in an administration or, say, the promise of reciprocal campaign support. #NoConCon
The Republican National Committee rules are also quiet on what can be done to curry favor with delegates, but the party pointed to the need to comply with FEC rules. #NoConCon
Also from the #CNN article above:
And if a Constitutional Convention were to be called, it would not be good news for Democrats. Even if the resolution Is for Citizens United, for example, because...
...in the words of @teresatomlinson "...if you open it up to a Constitutional Convention, ALL BETS ARE OFF and you can amend The Constitution in any way WHATSOEVER."
Still, some people believe (or say they believe) that a Constitutional Convention can be limited to one subject. Some claim there's no chance of a "runaway convention."
Maybe you believe former Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger, who was a moderate conservative?
And this letter that Chief Justice Warren Burger wrote to Mrs. Phyllis Schlafly,
an American constitutional lawyer and conservative political activist, who died in 2016...posted by @teresathomlinson
How about Harvard Law School Professor Laurence Tribe @tribelaw who teaches Constitutional law?
How about Bruce Ackerman @backermanyale, an American constitutional law scholar at Yale University?
How about American legal historian Michael J. Klarman, who wrote a book on the first and only Constitutional Convention?
How about Teresa Tomlinson, @teresatomlinson one of the foremost experts on Constitutional Conventions?
Or this fact sheet from the Common Cause?
Or this article from the New American explaining why any #ConCon would not be limited to one subject? #NoConCon
Or this article from the Center on Budget & Policy Priorities which explains that DELEGATES, (and as I said before there is little regulation on the influence over them) could set their own agenda? #NoConCon
How about James Madison, who wrote the Bill of Rights? "A convention therefore does not appear to be the most convenient or probable channel for getting to the object."
O.K., if you've made it this far you're ready for ConCon 201. In this section we'll learn why—based on history—that the idea of runaway convention is 100% valid. Simple reason: the delegates exceeded their authority.
The first and only Constitutional Convention begins on May 25, 1787 in complete secrecy. Delegates from 12 states attend. Only Rhode Island is missing.
It was the Federalists vs. Antifederalists. "Publius," a pen name, vs. "Cato," another pen name.
So the ratifications process started. And went on...and on...
So Rhode Island waffled and waffled for almost three years…
But finally caved to the threat of a trade embargo by Congress. #NoConCon
17 more amendments have been added between February 7, 1795 and May 5, 1992.
O.K. we're done with history. Now we're reading for #ConCon 301.
The Count. The count is anywhere from zero to 41 depending on which Pro-ConCon organization you are talking about or which particular subject you are talking about. But most of them are trying to pass a Single Subject Amendment resolution entitled "Balanced Budget Amendment."
The Tea Party—which is very closely related to the push for a Constitutional Amendment—started out with one agenda, then drifted towards fiscal responsibility since their views on social issues are not widely accepted.
Economists warn that while a balanced budget can be good for individual states, it is extremely dangerous for our federal government and could send our country into an economic crisis. Social Security and many other social programs would be in jeopardy. #NoConCon
Recessions would be more likely and it would take longer and longer to recover from them. Legislators would be forced to cut federal programs and raise taxes—the opposite good economic policy.. #NoConCon
The pro-#ConCon American Legislative Exchange Council (or ALEC) is a nonprofit organization of conservative state legislators and private sector representatives who draft and share model state-level legislation for distribution among state governments in the United States.
But in recent years, they have been criticized by liberal groups and have been written about in the New York Times and Bloomberg Businessweek as giving corporations too much influence over legislation. #NoConCon nytimes.com/2012/04/22/us/…
Articles about the push for a Constitutional Convention are all over ALEC's website. However, this organization has remained more behind the scenes as others have taken over (see ConCon 401) most of the force behind the push for a Constitutional Convention. #NoConCon
All these organizations have different counts and some of them are at battle with others. There are even 4 specific monikers for each type of count: Counts by States, Rogers Style Application Counts, Paulsen Style Application Counts and the Brennan Style Application Counts.
The Rogers Style count is the most credible (on the Wikipedia link below the most recent Wisconsin resolution is not counted). #NoConCon en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_s…
The Rogers style count agrees with the BBATF count and it appears that we should take the BBATF the most seriously. BBATF claims that they have 28 states right now and so only need six more. This map illustrates the issues with counts. #NoConCon
The problem is, 10 of the 28 states that BBATF have claimed were passed by various states between 1973-1983. The list of states with old resolutions: Colorado, Nebraska, Kansas, Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri, Iowa, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.
Ironically, there has been legislation in several of those states introduced to pass new amendments. Which means to me that pro ConCon organizations know these older resolutions could be successfully challenged in court. #NoConCon
Constitutional attorneys argue over these resolutions so I can only ask valid questions. It appears that an agreement was made to concentrate on resolutions with only ONE particular subject and it had to be worded the exact same way: "Balanced Budget Amendment."
If the wording is different or there are other issues attached to it, lobbying organizations have pushed for another resolution in that state. Another issue is the classification of the resolution, called the Van Sickle-Boughey Classification.
There are five classifications and the most recent resolutions passed (2010-present) all have classification V. All resolutions with a classification of I-IV might be legitimately challenged in court. @ACLU
Another problem could be that some states passed resolutions which have an expiration date attached. Further investigation into that is necessary. #NoConCon
Between 1983-2010, nothing happened. Ironically, 2010 is the year the tea party was formed. The Tea Party has been directly linked to the Koch Brothers through their foundations Americans for Prosperity and FreedomWorks (AKA Citizens for a Sound Economy).
The Koch Brothers ideals are in line with the 1980 Libertarian Party National Platform. Most people know by now that David Koch was the Vice Presidential candidate for the Libertarian party in 1980. Ed Clark was running for President. @NoConCon
Just so you don't have to read the whole Libertarian Party platform, the short version is they want to privatize many areas of government (even the Post Office!) and get rid of all government funded social programs.
And another shocker!

They also want to repeal all campaign finance laws.
But there are other reasons for pushing a Constitutional Convention: merging church & state, making abortion illegal and banning same-sex marriage. I'm sure Scott Pruitt only admitted to the very tip of the iceberg. #NoConCon
But there is some good news: the Montana, which is one of the targeted states, does not have a legislative session until 2019. However, if BBATF gets the other five resolutions passed before that, it will be extremely dangerous. Especially if Republicans retain power. #NoConCon
We have to do everything we can to block all resolutions in red and yellow states on that map and if possible, challenge the older resolutions. #NoConCon
One example:
So if you see tweets that have the hashtag #NoConCon, please retweet because it is most likely an attempt to thwart legislation in one of the targeted states. It is so vitally important for our country to stop this movement.
O.K., I doubt anyone is still with me, but if you are, you are ready for #ConCon 401. #NoConCon
This part will be easy. We'll go over all the organizations that are lobbying in favor of a Constitutional Convention. Summaries from Congressional Research Service, a report prepared for members Committee of Congress.
The Congressional Research Service report is entitled "The Article V Convention to Propose Constitutional Amendments: Current Developments." It is dated November 15, 2017. #NoConCon
Balanced Budget Amendment Task Force (BBATF)
Count: 28
Citizens Initiatives
Count: 1
Compact for America
Count: 5. This organization has overt Tea Party connections with William "Bill" Norton, who was the former National Support Team Constitutional Coordinator for the Tea Party Patriots.
Convention of States
Count: 12
Friends of the Article V Convention
Count: 0
Restoring Freedom
Count: 0
This may or may not be their website:
Single Subject Amendment
Count: 41
U.S. Term Limits
Count: 1
Wolf PAC
Count: 5
More on the Wolf PAC:

FreedomWorks is a conservative and libertarian advocacy group widely associated with the Tea Party movement. It helped foster the movement along with Americans for Prosperity and DontGo (founded by American conservative Patrick Ruffini.) #NoConCon
FreedomWorks is funded by the #KochBrothers and originated from their organization called Citizens for a Sound Economy. #NoConCon
Mark Meckler, co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, currently serves as President of Citizens for Self-Governance. Jim DeMint, a former U.S. Senator, who was also a leading figure in the Tea Party movement, is now an adviser (see Heritage Foundation).

National Taxpayers Union

Alliance Defending Freedom

Liberty Counsel

Campaign Constitution

Heritage Action for America
The Heritage Foundation. Jim DeMint, a former Senator from #SouthCarolina was a leading figure in the Tea Party movement & served as president of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think thank, until May of 2017. #NoConCon
The next month, June of 2017, Jim DeMint became a senior advisor of Citizens for Self-Governance (above). #NoConCon
Balanced Budget Forever
(associated with Ohio Governor John Kasich and funded a trip he took to promote #ConCon)
Contract from America, which is now defunct (or morphed/merged into another organization), was started in 2010 by Tea Party Patriots.
Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida.
Author, David Barton

In short, numerous Libertarian Party, Tea Party and #KochBrothers connections to most of these organizations.
O.K., time to go on to #ConCon 402. This is a gut course. Pretty much any #Democratic organization is against this, but I will identify the top ones.
The Legal Aid Society
The John Birch Society
Center of Budget Policy & Priorities
Fiscal Policy Institute
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW)
Environmental Advocates of New York
International Association of Fire Fighters
League of Women Voters of the U.S.
National Education Association
Sierra Club
Voting Rights Institute
Democracy 21
Emily's List
Eagle Forum
Common Cause
Columbus, GA Mayor Teresa Tomlinson
Wait? Did you see the John Birch Society? Oh yes. The very conservative right-wing organization is AGAINST #ConCon because they are sensible Republicans. They even have a video "A Crash Course on a Constitutional Convention."
And here's an article about the John Birch Society's quest to thwart a Constitutional Convention.
If you're still here you're ready for #ConCon 501. Just some of the best articles I've found about the very dangerous quest to call a Constitutional Convention.
I'm going to post one more, but there are so many out there. Some of these are old, but explain the issue very well.
That is all.
Posting ConCon 101-EZ here:
Also posting ConCon 101-EZ+:

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