League of Women Voters

THE LEAGUE’S POSITION

The League of Women Voters is concerned that there are many unresolved questions about the powers and processes of an Article V Constitutional Convention. The League believes that such a convention should be called only if the following conditions are in place:

    • The Constitutional Convention must be transparent and not conducted in secret. The public has the right to know topics debated and voted on.
    • Representation at the Constitutional Convention must be based on population rather than one state, one vote, and delegates should be elected rather than appointed. The delegates represent citizens, should be selected by them and must be distributed by U.S. population.
    • Voting at the Constitutional Convention must be by delegate, not by the state. Delegates from one state can have varying views and should be able to express them by individual votes.
    • The Constitutional Convention must be limited to a particular topic. It is important to guard against a “runaway convention” which considers multiple issues or problems that were not initiated by the states.
    • Only state resolutions on a single topic count when determining if a Constitutional Convention should be called. Counting state requests by subject ensure that there is sufficient interest in a particular topic to call a Convention and enhances citizen interest and participation in the process.
    • The validity of state calls for an Article V Constitutional Convention must be determined by the most recent action of the state. If a state has enacted a rescission of its call, that rescission must be respected by Congress.

Statement of Position on Constitutional Conventions under Article V of the U.S. Constitution as Announced by National Board, January 2016