A disturbing read by Salon’s Paul Rosenberg today in which he he describes the ideas presented in a conference call he was able to eavesdrop on that was led by rising conservative idea-man Charles Kacprowicz. The basic concept is to rally more than 30 states into a constitutional convention–taking advantage of Article Five of the Constitution–to pass a “Sovereignty and States Rights Amendment.” This amendment would allow states to nullify any federal laws they so choose.
Rosenberg is hardly the first to cover this, as it is a topic of mild panic among some on the left, if still fringe-ish. He even cites two writers who have done some amazing investigative and thought journalism on the subject–and that’s where the relevance of his article comes into play. He describes how Kacprowicz’s ideas meet at the cusp of two of the radical right’s most powerful movements: State-level nullification and a push for a national convention. He also notes the advantage Kacprowicz enjoys by operating within the “double blind spot” the national media suffers when it comes to these two issues. By connecting these two scarcely covered, and covered separately when covered, topics, you begin to get a true glimpse into just how insidious this plan really is.
He writes that, rather than play by the rules and follow the recommendations proposed by the GOP’s own post-mortem, many on the right see this path as the one that will make their goals truly attainable:
But equally clear is the trend line of presidential election results: Republicans have only won a majority of the popular vote just one time since 1988 — in 2004, when Bush was reelected by the narrowest margin since Woodrow Wilson in 1916. Following the latest reminder of this trend, with Romney’s defeat in 2012, there was much Beltway buzz about the GOP “rebranding” itself, especially to appeal to the Hispanics. But the real action in conservative and GOP politics this past year has been in state-level struggles where the aim was not to win over new voters, so much as to rewrite the rules of the game. And that’s where Kacprowicz comes in.
By invoking the sacred creed of states’ rights and under the guise of majority-rule and constitutionality, this plan would endow a vicious minority tyrannical power. And if you think that it would not be used to do harm, think about the progress against which they are rebelling, and just take a look at what the same people are doing with the comparably little and judiciously-checked power they have at the state-level today.