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House of Representatives
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: December 8, 2014 10:45 AM
From: Representative Matt Gabler
To: All House members
Subject: Concurrent Resolution calling for a “Convention of States” otherwise known as a limited constitutional convention under Article V of the United States Constitution
 
In the near future, I will be introducing a concurrent resolution, calling for a “Convention of States,” otherwise known as a limited constitutional convention under Article V of the United States Constitution. The purpose of this convention will be to propose amendments to the United States Constitution imposing restraints on federal power and jurisdiction.

The United States Constitution provides for two methods of proposing amendments. Amendments may be proposed by Congress, or, alternatively, by a “Convention for proposing Amendments.” Congress would be required to call a convention upon “application” by two-thirds of the states. This concurrent resolution proposes Pennsylvania’s “application” to Congress for such a convention. Similar resolutions are working their way through the legislatures of other states. Georgia, Florida and Alaska have already adopted these resolutions, while Arizona’s resolution has passed their State House.

A Convention of States will create the needed opportunity for states to hold the federal government accountable to the voices of the people. A Convention will provide a means to propose solutions to problems that stem from unchecked activities of a bloated and oversized federal government.

While some people have expressed well-placed reservations about the dangers of a Constitutional Convention, I believe this resolution’s language includes the proper protections against unintended consequences. We certainly do not want to open “Pandora’s Box” to unwanted amendments. For this reason, this resolution only grants the Convention the ability to propose “amendments to the Constitution of the United States that impose fiscal restraints on the federal government, limit the power and jurisdiction of the federal government, and limit the terms of office for its officials and for members of Congress.” Any amendment proposed by the convention would need to be ratified by three-quarters of states in order to be adopted.

I am sure many of us frequently hear constituents expressing a desire for someone to “do something about that mess in Washington.” This resolution is our opportunity as state legislators to exercise our proper role in starting the process of working toward a more accountable federal government. I ask you to please join me in supporting this resolution.

PRIOR SPONSORS: EMRICK, BARRAR, CAUSER, DENLINGER, EVERETT, GROVE, HARHART, HARRIS, KAUFFMAN, KIRKLAND, MAHER, MARSHALL, MARSICO, MASSER, METZGAR, MILNE, MURT, ROCK, SANKEY, SAYLOR, SONNEY, SWANGER


Introduced as HR63