Yesterday I introduced you to our new website, FixCongressFirst.org, which is dedicated to reforming our political system through the Fair Elections Now Act.
As you explored this new site, you might have wondered, "Fix Congress first... then what?"
We all know it's going to take a comprehensive effort to achieve the kind of lasting reform that our democracy needs. Passing the Fair Elections Now Act is an essential first step, and with your support I know we can help make this legislation into law.
But the Citizens United ruling two weeks ago made one thing clear: the Supreme Court will not be our ally in the fight to restore the public's trust in Congress. If we want to guarantee that nothing will stand in the way of fundamental reform -- now or in the future -- then we have no choice but to write this reform into our founding document, the Constitution itself.
That's why I called last month for a constitutional amendment to protect the independence of Congress that would guarantee its accountability to no one but the People.
Today we announce another new website, CallAConvention.org, which is devoted to this effort to pass a constitutional amendment.
Our Constitution provides two paths to an amendment. The first begins in Congress, but I don't believe we can rely on Congress to upend the status quo that keeps members in office by giving them financial incentives to cater to special interests. Moreover, we shouldn't distract Congress from the vital task of passing the Fair Elections Now Act.
The second path -- the path I believe we should take -- is to call a Constitutional Convention. Our Framers established this process for moments just like this one: when the American public demands fundamental change, but Washington is unable or unwilling to heed their call. This path bypasses Congress, enabling the states to initiate a convention by passing resolutions through their legislatures.
Our new website will help our community lead the way to a Constitutional Convention and a constitutional amendment that preserves the integrity of our governing institutions. Click here to visit this new site, learn more, and sign on to support this movement:
Our country has never held a Constitutional Convention, and the audacity of such a call does not escape me. But I am convinced that this is possible.
I'm convinced by the outpouring of outrage in the wake of the Citizens United decision. I'm convinced by the passion of those who offered me words of support and encouragement after my call for an amendment last week. And I'm convinced by the American people's history of strength and resolve in the face of overwhelming obstacles.
There is a will in this country to solve problems that have blocked progress for too long. If we can channel this will, remain focused, and unite around a common vision -- a vision that ignores partisan agendas in favor of a shared desire to preserve the integrity of our political system -- then I have no doubt this can be done.
In the coming weeks, we'll begin a discussion about exactly how we're going to get this done, and we'll be asking all of you to get involved and take a leadership role in a movement to change this country. Stay tuned for much, much more.
Fix Congress first. Then call a Convention.
This is our path -- this is how we'll restore our democracy.
-- Lawrence Lessig
Feb 4, 2010
Time For A Constitutional Convention
I'm with Lawrence Lessig on this one.
at 12:46 PM