Constitutional Convention Under Article V (LWVUS)

Constitutional Convention Under Article V (LWVUS)

Current Issues | Position

Current Issues:  

See Advocacy>Legislative Advocacy>Electoral Democracy for testimonies and updates related to this topic. 

Related reading: 

Why We Don't Want a Constitutional Convention  by Holley Ulbrich 



Statement of LWVUS Position on Constitutional Conventions under Article V of the U.S. Constitution, as announced by the National Board, January 2016:

The League is concerned that there are many unresolved questions about the powers and processes of an Article V Constitutional Convention. The League believes such a convention should be called only if the following conditions are in place:

a) The Constitutional Convention must be transparent and not conducted in secret. The public has a right to know what is being debated and voted on;

b) Representation at the Constitutional Convention must be based on population rather than one-state, one-vote, and delegates should be elected rather than appointed. The delegates represent citizens, should be elected by them and must be distributed by the U.S. population;

c) Voting at the Constitutional Convention must be by delegate, not by state. Delegates from one state can have varying views and should be able to express them by individual votes;

d) The Constitutional Convention must be limited to a specific topic. It is important to guard against a “runaway convention” which considers multiple issues or topics that were not initiated by the states;

e) Only state resolutions on a single topic count when determining if a Constitutional Convention should be called. Counting state requests by topic ensures that there is sufficient interest in a particular subject to call a Convention and enhances citizen interest and participation in the process; and

f) The validity of state calls for an Article V Constitutional Convention must be determined by the most recent action of the state. If a state has enacted a rescission of its call, that rescission must be respected by Congress.