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To: KC Burke
What Hamilton and the people at the Constitutional Convention of 1787 did was authorized by Congress under Article XIII of the Articles of Confederation. Under Article XIII, Congress was the safety valve. Congress had the authority to pass the fruits of the Convention on to the states for ratification – or refuse to do so. Congress could have told the delegates to the Convention that what they had wrought contravened the mandate Congress had given them, and thus Congress would stop everything in its tracks.

But due to a combination of the crisis of the time and the respect held for General Washington, Congress decided to let the work of the Convention go to the states for ratification.

Technically, no law was violated and all norms were followed.

Again, I'm attempting to show that a Convention for Proposing Amendments called to address one subject cannot become the "runaway" convention, driven by the rule of the proletariat, that you fear.

As to what a convention would look like in the makeup of its delegates, it would look like America. You might find that a fearful specter to behold, but I'm not all that worried. There is minimal damage that could be done in a single subject convention, and in the end the state legislatures (or ratifying conventions) would be the final judge as to what does and doesn't get into the Constitution.

The Framers set a high bar for amendment for a reason.

11 posted on 04/25/2007 11:30:15 AM PDT by Publius (A = A)
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To: Publius
The time of the original convention was a time where propriaties were still held dear. The extremes between the framers were still composed of the times that they had just been through in the rebellion and the times taht had jsut left.

The extremes available to us now are almost repulsive to contemplate. I have some faith in our general citizenry, that is very true. But the general would not make up the specific and the specific would have the "all walks of life" and "include all voices" component that would let the extemes of twentieth century excesses into the mix.

I would like to see deficiencies and missteps corrected. I would like the pride of authorship for my contemporaries to take some pride in each day as the Republic goes forward, but the Congress could pass and amendment and they could pass another to undue it as they have done. Should we have even a modestly broad selection of issues addressed by "the People" I don't see the congress or the people ever being able to undo the damage if mistakes were made, subsiquently recognized and then sought to be addressed.

The winning side in the convention would use their win to delegitamate the challenge, IMHO>

Think for a minute how, within five years of its implementation, the Roe v. Wade decision became so set in stone to be called "the law of the land", the "right to an abortion" and all a permenantly settled matter in the press. Such would be the fate of any misstep.

15 posted on 04/25/2007 12:42:26 PM PDT by KC Burke (Men of intemperate minds can never be free...their passions forge their fetters.)
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To: Publius
Slight correction. The 1787 Philadelphia Convention in Philadelphia was not called by Congress. The Articles of Confederation gave Congress no such power. The Convention was called by the Report of the Annapolis Convention of 1786, written by Alexander Hamilton at the direction of John Dickenson, President of that Convention.

The fact that Congress knew it had no power to call or control the 1787 Convention appears in the first seven words of a Resolution Congress passed before that Convention: "Resolved that in the opinion of Congress...." the Convention should be restricted to amending the Articles of Confederation.

Instead, the powers of the "Commissioners" as the Delegates were actually called, was given by the authority of the states which appointed them. In short, Congress was trying to jump aboard and take over a circus parade which had already passed them.

Congressman Billybob

Don't Tread On Me (9/12 photo and poster"

""I Was in the First Wave'"

93 posted on 03/06/2010 2:28:37 PM PST by Congressman Billybob (www.TheseAretheTimes.us)
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