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vcczar

Hypothetical 2017 Constitutional Convention

The 2017 Constitutional Convention  

24 members have voted

  1. 1. If sent as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention, would your primary goal be to...

    • Preserve the Constitution as it is.
    • Amend the Constitution where it is unclear.
    • Amend the Constitution to make improvements, suitable for the 21st century and beyond.
    • Rewrite the Constitution, since it is archaic
    • Abolish the Constitution, because it's a hindrance
      0
  2. 2. Which of the following articles or amendments of the Constitution would you propose amending?

    • Article One, describing the Congress/legislative branch
    • Article Two, describing the President/executive branch
    • Article Three, describing the Supreme Court/Judicial Branch
    • Article Four, describing the relations between the states and the federal government
    • Article Five, describing the process for amending the Constitution
    • Article Six, establishing the Constitution, and all Federal laws made in accordance with it as the supreme law of the land
    • Article Seven, describing the process for establishing the government
    • 1st Amendment -- Freedom of speech, of religion, of the press, of assembly and the right to petition
    • 2nd Amendment -- the right of individuals to bear arms
    • 3rd Amendment -- prohibits the government from forcing citizens to house soldiers during peacetime without consent
    • 4th Amendment -- protects against unreasonable searches and seizures of self or property
    • 5th Amendment -- establishes judicial protections and requirements for both accused and guilty; also has clause regarding eminent domain
    • 6th Amendment -- protections and rights of those accused of a crime
    • 7th Amendment - extends the right to a trial by jury to civil cases and prohibits a judge from overturning the decision of the jury
    • 8th Amendment -- protects against excessively high bails and from cruel or unusual punishments
    • 9th Amendment -- declares that individuals have other fundamental rights, in addition to those stated in the Constitution.
    • 10th Amendment -- that the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
    • 11th Amendment -- specifically prohibits federal courts from hearing cases in which a state is sued by an individual from another state or another country
    • 12th Amendment -- modifies the way the Electoral College chooses the President and Vice President.
    • None of the above
  3. 3. part 2 of the above

    • 13th Amendment -- abolished slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime.
    • 14th Amendment -- granted United States citizenship to former slaves and to all persons "subject to U.S. jurisdiction".
    • 15th Amendment -- prohibits the federal and state governments from denying a citizen the right to vote based on that citizen's "race, color, or previous condition of servitude".
    • 16th Amendment -- allows the Congress to levy an income tax without apportioning it among the states or basing it on the United States Census.
    • 17th Amendment -- established the popular election of United States Senators by the people of the states.
    • 19th Amendment -- prohibits the states and the federal government from denying the right to vote to citizens of the United States on the basis of sex.
    • 22nd Amendment -- sets a term limit for election and overall time of service to the office of President of the United States.
    • 24th Amendment -- prohibits both Congress and the states from conditioning the right to vote in federal elections on payment of a poll tax or other types of tax.
    • 25th Amendment -- deals with succession to the Presidency and establishes procedures both for filling a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, as well as responding to Presidential disabilities.
    • 26th Amendment -- prohibits the states and the federal government from using age as a reason for denying the right to vote to citizens of the United States who are at least eighteen years old.
    • I would also like to amend one of the "minor" Amendments not mentioned
    • I would like to add an amendment not purely amending an already existing amendment.
    • None of the above


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1 hour ago, Patine said:

You are too easily pleased with a broken system, @Reagan04. I believe in his day, in fact, Lord North (British PM for George III from the mid-1760's to 1780) had a very similar attitude to yours about change and reform when Benjamin Franklin personally delivered him the first set of grievances and recommendations from the First Continental Congress, before independence was declared, when many viewed a peaceful, amicable resolution to the issues as still possible.

Last time I checked, the system wasn't broken.  The US political system is stable and continuing to operate in a way that it was designed to.

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Here are some proposals for article 3:

1. Term limits of 20 years for Supreme Court Justices, or until they reach the age of 75, whichever comes first. 

2. The Chief Justice will also preside over impeachment trials involving the VP. This prevents the possibility of the VP, as president of the Senate, presiding over his own impeachment trial. 

3. A vacancy on the court, must be filled as soon as practical, by the incumbent president, and then must be heard and voted on for confirmation by the Senate within 90s days of nomination. [This is to prevent the confusion that caused the Merrick Garland situation]

4. A supreme court justice must have reached a minimum age of 50. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, vcczar said:

Here are some proposals for article 3:

1. Term limits of 20 years for Supreme Court Justices, or until they reach the age of 75, whichever comes first. 

2. The Chief Justice will also preside over impeachment trials involving the VP. This prevents the possibility of the VP, as president of the Senate, presiding over his own impeachment trial. 

3. A vacancy on the court, must be filled as soon as practical, by the incumbent president, and then must be heard and voted on for confirmation by the Senate within 90s days of nomination. [This is to prevent the confusion that caused the Merrick Garland situation]

4. A supreme court justice must have reached a minimum age of 50. 

 

 

Although, ideally, I would like to propose some mechanism to veer SC justices to being chosen much more by competence than partisan ideology, I'm tapped completely as to how that would be realistically arranged... :S

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10 hours ago, jvikings1 said:

Last time I checked, the system wasn't broken.  The US political system is stable and continuing to operate in a way that it was designed to.

It's not broken, but there are some things that can be improved.  Just needs a few minor tweaks.

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11 hours ago, Patine said:

Although, ideally, I would like to propose some mechanism to veer SC justices to being chosen much more by competence than partisan ideology, I'm tapped completely as to how that would be realistically arranged... :S

The closest thing you could to is have experience requirements. Both years and experience levels. Perhaps only District judges can be elevated to SC justice, or something. 

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On 4/7/2017 at 10:43 AM, vcczar said:

1. One of the following two options (in order of preference):

a. Supreme Court Justices shall serve for a single, non-renewable term of ten years.  If a justice dies or is impeached prior to the end of their term, the President must appoint a replacement in the same method as currently.
b. Initial appointment is for a fixed term of five years.  After this term expires, a justice may be re-nominated for a lifetime term.  If teachers can only earn tenure after 3 years, why not for an important position such as SCOTUS justice?

2. Any decision by the Supreme Court may be nullified by 3/5 vote of either the Senate and House, or 3/5 of the states*.  This shall not be subject to Presidential veto, and must take place within two years of the court's decision.

3. All decisions must receive Constitutional justification, and can be violated if in conflict with the Constitution.

* e.g. either via the legislature or voter referendum

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I have no proposals for article 3

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Here are the proposals as they now stand. Before we vote on them, we need to see if we can improve them:

 

1. Fix the number of Supreme Court justices to 9, allowing for no reduction or increase in this number. 

 
2a. Term limits of 20 years for Supreme Court Justices, or until they reach the age of 75, whichever comes first. 
 
3. The Chief Justice will also preside over impeachment trials involving the VP. This prevents the possibility of the VP, as president of the Senate, presiding over his own impeachment trial. 
 
4. A vacancy on the court, must be filled as soon as practical, by the incumbent president, and then must be heard and voted on for confirmation by the Senate within 90s days of nomination. [This is to prevent the confusion that caused the Merrick Garland situation]
 
5. A supreme court justice must have reached a minimum age of 50. 
 
6. Only federal-level judges can be elevated to SC justice
 
7. Any decision by the Supreme Court may be nullified by 3/5 vote of either the Senate and House, or 3/5 of the states, through state legislature or state referendum.  This shall not be subject to Presidential veto, and must take place within two years of the court's decision.
 
8. All decisions must receive Constitutional justification, and can be violated if in conflict with the Constitution.
 
The following proposals need to be merged with 2a, since they are similar. Thus, before we vote, they need to be compromised: 
 
2b. Supreme Court Justices shall serve for a single, non-renewable term of ten years.  If a justice dies or is impeached prior to the end of their term, the President must appoint a replacement in the same method as currently.
 
2c. Initial appointment is for a fixed term of five years.  After this term expires, a justice may be re-nominated for a lifetime term.  If teachers can only earn tenure after 3 years, why not for an important position such as SCOTUS justice?
 

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1 hour ago, vcczar said:

Here are the proposals as they now stand. Before we vote on them, we need to see if we can improve them:

 

1. Fix the number of Supreme Court justices to 9, allowing for no reduction or increase in this number. 

 
2a. Term limits of 20 years for Supreme Court Justices, or until they reach the age of 75, whichever comes first. 
 
3. The Chief Justice will also preside over impeachment trials involving the VP. This prevents the possibility of the VP, as president of the Senate, presiding over his own impeachment trial. 
 
4. A vacancy on the court, must be filled as soon as practical, by the incumbent president, and then must be heard and voted on for confirmation by the Senate within 90s days of nomination. [This is to prevent the confusion that caused the Merrick Garland situation]
 
5. A supreme court justice must have reached a minimum age of 50. 
 
6. Only federal-level judges can be elevated to SC justice
 
7. Any decision by the Supreme Court may be nullified by 3/5 vote of either the Senate and House, or 3/5 of the states, through state legislature or state referendum.  This shall not be subject to Presidential veto, and must take place within two years of the court's decision.
 
8. All decisions must receive Constitutional justification, and can be violated if in conflict with the Constitution.
 
The following proposals need to be merged with 2a, since they are similar. Thus, before we vote, they need to be compromised: 
 
2b. Supreme Court Justices shall serve for a single, non-renewable term of ten years.  If a justice dies or is impeached prior to the end of their term, the President must appoint a replacement in the same method as currently.
 
2c. Initial appointment is for a fixed term of five years.  After this term expires, a justice may be re-nominated for a lifetime term.  If teachers can only earn tenure after 3 years, why not for an important position such as SCOTUS justice?
 

Number 8 needs clarification. If the role, Constitutionally, is to "interpret the US Constitution," who is authorized or empowered to decide if their rulings are in violation of the Constitution? As we've seen today, many different people have different viewpoints of just what the Constitution means on certain issues. Who will be this "judicial watchdog" for rulings in violation of the Constitution, with their wisdom (and opinion) on the issue being binding?

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15 minutes ago, Patine said:

Number 8 needs clarification. If the role, Constitutionally, is to "interpret the US Constitution," who is authorized or empowered to decide if their rulings are in violation of the Constitution? As we've seen today, many different people have different viewpoints of just what the Constitution means on certain issues. Who will be this "judicial watchdog" for rulings in violation of the Constitution, with their wisdom (and opinion) on the issue being binding?

I was, like you, under the impression (one given to me by Marbury v. Madison, decided roughly 214 years ago) that the Supreme Court's job was to interpret what is and isn't Constitutional, which inherently necessitates interpreting the Constitution itself... This change would effectively eliminate judicial activism of literally any kind, which is fine if you're super conservative and/or a strict constructionist, but a massive number of people (including myself) would not agree that judicial activism is a bad thing. (I'm a living document kid of guy)

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5 hours ago, Patine said:

Number 8 needs clarification. If the role, Constitutionally, is to "interpret the US Constitution," who is authorized or empowered to decide if their rulings are in violation of the Constitution? As we've seen today, many different people have different viewpoints of just what the Constitution means on certain issues. Who will be this "judicial watchdog" for rulings in violation of the Constitution, with their wisdom (and opinion) on the issue being binding?

I made that suggestion #8, and I withdraw it.  My purpose was to ensure that judges do not rule from the bench.  Justices can interpret the Constitution but judicial activism is dangerous and implies that a judge can substitute his/her personal opinion for the law.  We've seen that lately in that a few rogue Federal judges can single-handedly overturn a completely Constitutional executive order for the travel ban.  You have unelected lifetime-appointed judges making up laws from the bench.  The Supreme Court is the court of last resort and if a judge makes an unconstitutional decision then there's no further recourse.

That being said, I think maybe the 3/5 override can at least make that less of a danger.

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7 hours ago, vcczar said:

Here are the proposals as they now stand. Before we vote on them, we need to see if we can improve them:

The following proposals need to be merged with 2a, since they are similar. Thus, before we vote, they need to be compromised: 

2a. Term limits of 20 years for Supreme Court Justices, or until they reach the age of 75, whichever comes first. 

 

Okay but I don't agree with the age limit of  75.

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Proposal #8 is withdrawn. 

Proposal #2 is merged to a term limit of 20 years. The age limit of 75 has been removed. 

If no other alterations to these proposals are requested, then I will put them up for a vote tomorrow. 

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I propose a revision to proposal #4, exempting this requirement if the nominee is currently under investigation or is pending an investigation by a federal agency, if that agency announces it has reasonable cause to investigate this individual.

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1 minute ago, SirLagsalott said:

I propose a revision to proposal #4, exempting this requirement if the nominee is currently under investigation or is pending an investigation by a federal agency, if that agency announces it has reasonable cause to investigate this individual.

But "exempting someone under investigation for a crime or malfeasance" is a classic clause in many corrupt Third World nations' Constitutions (usually in regard to those running for executive and legislative offices, mind, and typically to strategically disqualify political opponents who may pose a threat to a powerful incumbent in a coming election, even despite typical "rigging").

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1 hour ago, Patine said:

But "exempting someone under investigation for a crime or malfeasance" is a classic clause in many corrupt Third World nations' Constitutions (usually in regard to those running for executive and legislative offices, mind, and typically to strategically disqualify political opponents who may pose a threat to a powerful incumbent in a coming election, even despite typical "rigging").

I think personally #4 is too specific.  The Constitution is designed to be open to interpretation.  The more you put in that "The President must do X and Y and Z in 90 days unless..." the less it's a Constitution and the more it becomes a "user manual" trying to solve every conceivable issue.

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I am against term limits on the court, since itll place this weird indirect elect on the SCOTUS every 20 years- think of the heightened influence special interest groups will play to insure the court will their way. I will vote no solely on that provision.

 

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I'm busy today, so I'll probably wait to put this up for a vote until tomorrow. That gives an extra day to amend proposals. 

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ght @Reagan04 @vcczar @Patine @jvikings1 @Bruce Fischer @MarcoCoolio @Sunnymentoaddict @CalebsParadox @LokiLoki22 @SeanFKennedy @chunkbuster11 @jnewt @SirLagsalott @Sanser2016 @michaelsdiamonds @Falcon @TruthO

We are now beginning proposals for Article 4, regarding the rights and relationship of the states between themselves and between the federal government. 

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Once again, I seek to preserve this marvel of populism and brilliant defender of the people.

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39 minutes ago, vcczar said:

ght @Reagan04 @vcczar @Patine @jvikings1 @Bruce Fischer @MarcoCoolio @Sunnymentoaddict @CalebsParadox @LokiLoki22 @SeanFKennedy @chunkbuster11 @jnewt @SirLagsalott @Sanser2016 @michaelsdiamonds @Falcon @TruthO

We are now beginning proposals for Article 4, regarding the rights and relationship of the states between themselves and between the federal government. 

I believe the right of determining voter suffrage rights should be transferred from the State to the Federal level. There is no justifiable reason different states should have different requirements for who gets the vote, and it is well-known this power being absolutely at the State level has been abused horribly at several instances in US history. Along with that, Federal House constituencies should be drawn by the Federal government, with States retaining the power to draw constituencies for their State Legislatures.

Also, more overtly recognized ability for Federal-State joint projects and Federal assistance to States who lack capabilities in their own State to fulfill infrastructure, security, policing and other need satisfactorily to their residents, as well as when State abilities are overwhelmed (like huge disasters, massive-scale terrorist attacks, usages of a WMD, or an armed rebellion that is so initially successful that the State Government is not in a functional position to formally 'ask' for intervention).

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I propose to repeal Article 4, Section 2, Clause 3, aka the Fugitive Slave Clause.

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56 minutes ago, jnewt said:

I propose to repeal Article 4, Section 2, Clause 3, aka the Fugitive Slave Clause.

Is that still in the official text?

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8 minutes ago, Patine said:

Is that still in the official text?

Yes. Obviously it's no longer in use, as it is nullified by the 13th Amendment, but it is still technically there (just with an invisible strike-through).

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