JANUARY 29, 2014
Townsend calls for Convention of States to amend U.S. Constitution
STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Rep. Kelly Townsend, R-Mesa, has proposed that state legislators formally ask the federal government to call for a convention of states for the purpose of proposing amendments to the U.S. Constitution; the gathering is also known as an Article V Convention.
House Concurrent Resolution 2027, sponsored by Townsend, is the first step that at least 34 states must take in order to set into motion the call for a convention of states. Article V of the U.S. Constitution says that if two-thirds of state legislatures request a convention of states, the federal government must call for a convention.
Article V permits the states to propose and ratify amendments to the U.S. Constitution without the votes of federal representatives and signature of the president.
“Our federal representatives have created a national debt that threatens our most basic freedoms,” Townsend said, “and threatens the liberty of generations to come. The states must act now to forestall further damage to our economic and personal liberties.”
Once a convention is called, amendments to the U.S. Constitution can then be proposed by the states. To take effect, an amendment requires approval of three-fourths of the 50 state legislatures, or 38 states. How each state ratifies an amendment is to be determined by the U.S. Congress. The convention itself will only propose amendments; it will not ratify them.
This has never been done before.