Convention of States: How the States Meet to Bypass Congress

Convention of States: How the States Meet to Bypass Congress

This article was originally published in Townhall.com. The idea of a convention of states such as the one scheduled for Phoenix, Arizona on September 12 may be unfamiliar to most people, but similar conventions have gathered throughout American history. British-American colonies first met in convention in 1677 to negotiate an Indian treaty. After that first meeting, inter-colonial conventions gathered on average every four to five years, up to the time of Independence. They considered Indian relations, defense, and other common…

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How the States Have Used the “Convention of States”

How the States Have Used the “Convention of States”

This article first appeared Aug. 15, 2017 in The Hill. Representatives of state legislatures from across the nation will converge in Phoenix, Arizona on Sept. 12 to participate in a traditional American institution called a “convention of states.” Conventions of states are valuable. They help ensure Washington, DC doesn’t dictate all decisions on every subject. The purpose of the meeting in Phoenix is to plan for another, even more important convention — one to propose adding a balanced budget amendment to the…

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A RESPONSE TO A “LIVING CONSTITUTIONALIST”

A RESPONSE TO A “LIVING CONSTITUTIONALIST”

Bruce Ledewitz is a very smart man who teaches constitutional law at Duquesne University in Pennsylvania. He recently wrote an article for the Philadelphia Inquirer—also reproduced in other news outlets. In his article, he contends that the Supreme Court’s decision this year in Trinity Lutheran Church v. Comer discredited “originalism.” Originalism, of course, is the approach of interpreting the Constitution as the Founders adopted it. Several leading originalists—including Professor Randy Barnett (Georgetown) and Professor Michael Ramsey (San Diego)—already have published good rejoinders.  I’ve been strongly urged to write one…

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Under the Constitution, Regulating Marijuana is Mostly a State Concern

Under the Constitution, Regulating Marijuana is Mostly a State Concern

A growing number of states are defying the federal marijuana ban, not only by easing their own laws, but by actively cooperating with marijuana growing, processing, and use. Many contend that pot should be a state, rather than a federal, concern. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled otherwise. In Gonzales v. Raich (2005), the court held that under the Constitution, Congress may use its Commerce Power to ban even “window box” medical marijuana, whether permitted under state law or not….

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List of Conventions of States and Colonies in American History

List of Conventions of States and Colonies in American History

Introduction Conventions of states, and before Independence of colonies have met frequently over the past three centuries. A “Convention for proposing Amendments” held under the Constitution is a gathering of this type. The following list itemizes all known conventions of states or colonies. To qualify as a convention of states (or colonies), the gathering must be a temporary meeting of legislatively-authorized representatives of at least three states or colonies, convening pursuant to instructions to consult about and/or negotiate solutions to…

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