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CHANGE: GOP state lawmakers meet to plan possible constitutional convention. A group of GOP stat…

CHANGE: GOP state lawmakers meet to plan possible constitutional convention.

A group of GOP state legislators reportedly spent four days last week in Phoenix outlining how to run a constitutional convention that would pave the way for new amendments mandating a balanced budget and possibly congressional term limits.

Nineteen states including Arizona, Iowa and New Hampshire had representation at the meeting, according to The Associate Press, though no Democrats were present. Thirty-four states would need to sign on to the movement to call a new constitutional convention, which would be the first since the one that drafted the U.S. Constitution in 1787.

All 27 amendments since adopted have been proposed by Congress.

The idea of amending the Constitution has been popular in some conservative circles. In January, GOP Sens. Chuck Grassley (Iowa) and Mike Lee (Utah) introduced a balanced budget amendment, while Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) called for a constitutional amendment to impose term limits on Congress.

President Trump called for congressional term limits during his campaign last year, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has more than once thrown cold water on that idea.

Such plans have also received backing from Republicans including Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

A slew of conservative activists, such as mega-donors Charles and David Koch and the American Legislative Exchange Council are pushing for a constitutional convention to limit the size of the government.

I should note that the Tennessee Law Review published a special symposium issue on constitutional conventions a few years ago. I wrote the Foreword, Sandy Levinson wrote the Afterword, and an all-star cast including Randy Barnett, Brannon Denning, Richard Epstein, Tim Lynch, Rob Natelson, and too many other luminaries to mention contributed the stuff in between. Here’s my contribution, which focuses specifically on spending. And here’s video of me talking about it at the Harvard Law School conference on constitutional conventions.

Plus, note this from Robert Natelson: How the procedures for a modern Amendments Convention may unfold.

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