Help!

The cc with Sen. Faber went well, and the San Diego Summit is on track.  I can confidently cite ten states that I know will have presiding officers in attendance.  I’d be very surprised and disappointed if we wind up with less that 20.  I think there’s a very good chance we get 26 or more.

Today we had our first San Diego cc, where we divided up the 50 states according to who will make the follow up phone calls after the invitation goes out.   We’ll continue to have weekly cc’s, Mondays at 4:00 p.m. EDT.

I don’t know how many people read this blog, or who they might be.  The help we need is in certain states where, at the moment, we have no particular idea of how to proceed.  If need be, a phone call will go to the Chief of Staff of the presiding officer being invited.  But we have  legislative contacts in most states who can assist.  The states where we’re starting from scratch are Alabama, Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, New York, Vermont, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Jersey.  That’s fifteen states.  And we want every state, red, purple or blue.  So if you know of an approach we can take in one of these states let me know at fpettyjohn@hotmail.com.  I’d love to hear from you.

Democrats should attend this Summit, regardless of how they feel about Article V or a BBA.  This Amendment Convention is going to happen.  I’m convinced it will happen next year, but even if I’m wrong and we come up short we’ll succeed in 2017, if we have to.  I’m convinced that 2016 is a very good year for Republicans, so the Congress should stay under friendly control.  There’s an excellent chance Republicans get complete control of additional legislative chambers as well.  Maine, Kentucky and Washington could be top targets in 2016, and there’s an outside shot at Oregon.  So if there is to be an Article V Convention, why shouldn’t a Democrat take part in the preparations for it?  Especially if those preparations are nonpartisan, such as insuring one state, one vote, one Amendment.  And Democrats are people too.  I’m a Democrat, for Pete’s sake.  We enjoy San Diego as much as Republicans, and we like our expenses paid too.  So by rights we should see some D’s.

The Reagan Initiative will not be on the agenda.  I thought it would be necessary to attract attendance, but it looks like I was wrong.  There will be discussions of the Reagan Initiative, of course.  I’ll be there and I’m damn sure going to talk to people about it.  But let’s not put the cart before the horse.   First things first.  There will be plenty of time to introduce this concept, once everyone has signed on to the Three One’s.  It’s something a lot of people may need time to wrap their heads around.

Unless we get 34 states in San Diego we should hold a follow up meeting in December.  The group in San Diego will decide if it’s necessary, and where and when it will be.  It should be on the East Coast, so the next ALEC meeting, in Scottsdale, won’t work very well.  If NCSL has their “Forum” in D.C., as they did last year, we could tie into that.  I, personally, would really like to meet at the Capitol in Annapolis, for obvious reasons.

When Virginia invited the other states to Annapolis to discuss amending the Articles, only four showed up.  40%, five of thirteen, were present.  If we get twenty in San Diego, that will be 40% as well.  It’s a good number to shoot for.

The Framers are legends.  Every one of them.  There will never be an assembly of Americans that can compare with them.  It was almost Providential.  The problem is that the Framers are held in such esteem that Americans, quite rightly, look on contemporary politicians as pygmies by comparison.  Anyone attempting to organize an Article V Convention must keep this in mind at all times.  We are not correcting their work, or improving their work, or making any basic changes.  We’re just correcting an oversight.  There was no Bill of Rights in the Constitution.  That was an oversight.  It was corrected.  A Balanced Budget Amendment corrects an oversight.  An oversight that threatens the continued existence of the Republic.

We’re not in the same league with the Framers, and we don’t pretend to be.  But we can act as they expected us to act.  We can step up, and pick up the tool they left for us, and use it as it was designed to be used.

We can be worthy of them.

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