(Congressman Billybob, I may need some legal principles enunciated here.)
Congress, from the beginning, chose not to recognize petitions on different subjects enacted at wildly different times. There were two unwritten standards: "single subject" and contemporaneousness. In 1992, Congress finally legislated both concepts into law.
Those two standards -- first unwritten and then later enacted into law -- permitted Congress to collate petitions by single subject and then weigh their timeliness. Part of this is connected with the legal concept of "agency".
The Convention is an agent of the states, and in their petitioning language, the states lay out the issue(s) on which they deputize the Convention to act as their agent. An agent cannot act outside the authority granted him. Under basic concepts of law, the Convention cannot stray from the mandate given it by the states. This is the source of the "single subject" condition.
The commotion over the ratification of 27th Amendment caused Congress, in that 1992 law, to limit ratifications of an amendment by the states to a 7 year shelf life. Congress applied the same rule to petitions for a Convention for Proposing Amendments.
In 2000 Walker v. US attempted to litigate the issue of the petitions for a convention that had been piling up for 200+ years. A federal court in the 9th District dismissed the case.
John / Billybob
Just curious, you stated the following:
In 2000 Walker v. US attempted to litigate the issue of the petitions for a convention that had been piling up for 200+ years.
Who is initiating these petitions? Are there any significant ones?