When the Founders finalized the US Constitution they included in Article V the means to Amend the US Constitution to make improvements and to address future needs… a Convention of States (COS). COS Delegates must meet (convene) to prepare the Amendment language which would then need to be approved (ratified) before becoming part of the US Constitution. Delegates for the COS may be chosen in the manner and quantity determined by the convening group.
In order to convene a COS, either: A) 2/3 (66.6%) of both chambers of the Federal Legislature (Senate and House) must vote YES; or B) 2/3 (66.6%) of both chambers (Senate and Assembly) of ALL State Legislatures must vote YES (currently 34 States). In order for a COS result to be proposed as an Amendment it must be ratified by 3/4 (75%) of the convening Federal or State Legislatures (currently 38 States). Final approval (ratification) of All COS Amendments must be done by 3/4 (75%) of both chambers (Senate and Assembly) of ALL State Legislatures (currently 38 States).
Why Have a COS? When the 34 State agreement required to convene a COS is reached it can pass US Constitution Amendments to: 1) Require a Federal Balanced Budget; and 2) Set Term Limits for Federal Elective Service. A third amendment could be: 3) Return Federal Public Land to the States.
All US States (except Vermont) have a State Balanced Budget Requirement.
Most US States have State Legislator Term Limits. A 12-year Federal Legislative Service Limit would “term-out” more than 50% of the US Senate and 25% of the US House. Note: 23% of the US Senate is age 65 to 69, 27% is age 70+ and the oldest US Senator is 87.
The Federal Government currently owns over 27% of America. When America was formed (and for the next 50-years) the Federal Government owned under 5% of America. When 12 Western States were added, the Federal Government owned over 50% of their total land (577 million acres).