Ingela Canis — you’re right, not only progressives. I was thinking in particular of the response to the Conservative-led movement, Citizens for Self Governance, to call a national convention to propose amendments. Liberal groups such as Common Cause and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities see this as a “threat to the Constitution” and an effort that “could not be controlled.” The proposed Balanced Budget Amendment is one of the motivating elements on both sides — although given the Republican Party’s de facto embrace of deficit spending under Trump, this initiative seems to be a dead letter.

Some liberal scholars such as Sanford Levinson and Laurence Lessig have also called for a new constitutional convention, as have some of the people promoting an amendment to overturn Citizens United.

I deliberately ignored this issue because I think that it is extremely unlikely that Congress will authorize such a convention and even less likely that the convention would ignore the existing ratification process. Further, I believe that a proposed amendment submitted by Congress and ratified by national referendum is much more democratic. If ever a national convention were authorized, the elections of delegates (hopefully there would be such elections!) to the convention would be effectively an indirect referendum, but with much more uncertainty.

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