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Con Con Is a Terrible Idea

December 20, 2008
Phyllis Schlafly

The mind-boggling amounts of the bailouts Congress has passed and is still debating, plus shocking Wall Street frauds, seem to have plunged some lawmakers into a silly season. Ohio state legislators this month held a surprise hearing on a resolution calling for a national constitutional convention, and then canceled a vote after dozens of citizens showed up to speak against it.

We already have a U.S. Constitution that has withstood the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune for more than two centuries, and we don’t need a new constitution. There is nothing wrong with the one we have except that politicians are not obeying it and judges are indulging in too much activism.

The idea that adding new words to the Constitution to require balancing the federal budget, or to give President Barack Obama a line-item veto so he can veto the extravagant spending he has already endorsed, is delusionary. The only thing more outlandish is the fanciful notion that a 2009 Con Con could adopt such requirements while avoiding other mistakes.

The most influential players in any new constitutional convention (colloquially known as a Con Con) would be Big Media giving us round-the-clock television coverage. The 2008 presidential campaign proved that the media consider themselves actors in the political process, not merely reporters.

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