Over 40 years ago Lew Uhler, a Reagan man through and through, founded the National Tax Limitation Committee. He turned 83 yesterday, and he’s still going strong, though his son Kirk is now assuming more of the duties at NTLC. Lew won’t be at ALEC, and Kirk will be. Lew has a family obligation.
I first met Lew and his lovely wife in 1989 at an ALEC meeting in Orlando. I made a presentation to an ALEC Task Force in which I urged my fellow State Legislators from around the country to pass a Resolution calling for an Article V Amendment Convention for the purpose of proposing a Term Limits Amendment.
I had introduced such a Resolution in the Alaska House, but I knew it wasn’t going anywhere. Sen. Ted Stevens was against it, and I was in the House Minority. I hoped someone from another State would pick up on the idea, but no one did. At long last, U. S. Term Limits has decided to go the Article V route. Howard Rich formed USTL in 1991, and rejected the use Article V. He chose a legally dubious strategy instead, which was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. Now that John Aglialoro has teamed up with him, they’re finally using Article V. They’ve got one State, Florida. But when we have a successful BBA Convention, their effort will take off.
This Convention will be the product of 40 years of work by Lew Uhler. He kept the movement alive out of sheer will. Alaska was his 32nd State, and he was getting close Then Tip O’Neill and Al Gore teamed up with Phyllis Schlafly and started a rescission movement. Lew was powerless to stop it, and by the time they were done Lew had only 17 States left. But he didn’t give up. He knew he was right. He knew that the time for Article V would come, and those 17 States would be the building block of a new campaign.
And he was right, and now we’re at 28, and we’ll get to 34 next year A full half of those States will be the work of one man, Lew Uhler. When that Convention convenes it will be his Convention, and he should be a delegate from California, a citizen delegate. The California Legislature will probably appoint three State Senators and three Assemblymen. The six of them can agree on the seventh, tie breaking delegate. Why shouldn’t it be Lew Uhler?