Statement by Rob Natelson on the “Compact for America’s” Latest Attack

The authors affiliated with the Compact for America (CFA) would have us believe that states may use their ordinary law-making power to reduce the Constitution’s extended five-step amendment procedure to two steps, and that the courts will meekly acquiesce. Common sense tells us that the courts are unlikely to do so.

The conclusion of common sense is reinforced by the courts’ history of turning aside efforts to employ ordinary legal process to alter or skew the Constitution’s amendment procedures. That previously-invalidated efforts were not precisely the same as theirs will be cold comfort to CFA supporters should one day they come up empty.

Portions of the CFA paper and its accompanying email release display a hyperbolic and personal tone. Suffice to say that some of its statements would not have been made if the authors had more carefully reviewed my resume and the time line of events. For example, the underlying conclusions that CFA’s principal spokesman now labels “bizarre,” “counterproductive,” “groundless,” and the product of “unexplained lengthy delay” are precisely the same as those reported in my 2011 Goldwater Institute paper that he edited and enthusiastically endorsed before being hired by CFA.

In the final analysis, however, it is best to repeat the AVIC Report’s recommendation that those with a stake in these issues submit them to their independent legal counsel. A copy of the AVIC Report is available here.