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  If you could introduce a Constitutional Amendment What would it be
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Author Topic: If you could introduce a Constitutional Amendment What would it be  (Read 43974 times)
Bandit3 the Worker
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« Reply #25 on: October 12, 2015, 10:37:37 pm »

- overturn Citizens United
- abolish "right-to-work"
- prohibit public funds from being held by religious schools
- a ban on government shutdowns
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Bandit3 the Worker
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« Reply #26 on: October 12, 2015, 10:38:58 pm »

2. Go ahead and give D.C. representation in the House, but no Senators. 

I'd support giving it full representation, but it wouldn't require an amendment to make it a state.
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #27 on: October 13, 2015, 06:44:52 am »


Highest on my list would be:
  • President limited to a single six year term
  • Senators limited to two six year terms
  • House members limited to four two year terms
  • A balanced budget amendment
  • Clarification of the 14th amendment to indicate that US citizenship is denied anyone born in the US unless at least one parent is a US citizen, a permanent resident, or in the armed forces
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CrabCake
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« Reply #28 on: October 14, 2015, 01:48:44 am »

Single terms are a bad idea. Then you end up like Mexico.
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Orser67
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« Reply #29 on: October 14, 2015, 04:05:52 am »

1)Require independent commissions to draw all state legislative and Congressional districts, and to oversee elections in a nonpartisan manner (making many state Secretary of States obsolete).

2)Abolish the Senate. Establish a presidential council of some kind to offer advice and consent and conduct impeachment trials.

3)Allow the president to unilaterally fund the government at current levels.

4)Allow Congress the right to statutorily regulate political speech.

5)Hold elections every three years instead of every two years. Give presidents three year terms with a three term limit. Redistrict every nine years.
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Mehmentum
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« Reply #30 on: October 14, 2015, 06:52:58 pm »

High Priority:

1.) Require that all congressional redistricting be done through a bipartisan commission.

2.) Reverse Citizens United, instate limits on how much corporations can give to campaigns.

Low Priority:

3.) Abolish the Senate as it is.  Replace with a chamber with proportional representation.

4.) Abolish the Electoral College, Presidents are elected via nationwide popular vote.

5.) Move election day to the weekend, so that more people can vote.
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #31 on: October 15, 2015, 11:53:09 pm »

Single terms are a bad idea. Then you end up like Mexico.

Given the fact that the electorate really doesn't pay enough attention to the process, term limits are the only way of ensuring a good level of turnover. The reason I think the executive branch should be limited to a single term is that it removes the need for the person holding the office of President from having to worry about campaigning while in office. (I'd prefer a single 7 year term, but I think that would become too expensive, making those be completely out of sync with congressional races...).
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #32 on: October 16, 2015, 12:02:21 am »

An amendment to prohibit all wars outside the event the United States is directly attacked on it's own soil (defined as the 48 Continental states, Alaska, Hawaii and territories) by a foreign nation.

So just to be clear, you'd remove the United States from NATO? And you'd remove the ability of the country from responding to aggression by an entity other than a nation state?

While it's a nice idea for an ideal world, we don't live in an ideal world.
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Figs
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« Reply #33 on: October 16, 2015, 08:12:15 am »

Single terms are a bad idea. Then you end up like Mexico.

Given the fact that the electorate really doesn't pay enough attention to the process, term limits are the only way of ensuring a good level of turnover. The reason I think the executive branch should be limited to a single term is that it removes the need for the person holding the office of President from having to worry about campaigning while in office. (I'd prefer a single 7 year term, but I think that would become too expensive, making those be completely out of sync with congressional races...).

Why is a high level of turnover a priori a good idea?
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #34 on: October 16, 2015, 10:41:05 am »

Single terms are a bad idea. Then you end up like Mexico.

Given the fact that the electorate really doesn't pay enough attention to the process, term limits are the only way of ensuring a good level of turnover. The reason I think the executive branch should be limited to a single term is that it removes the need for the person holding the office of President from having to worry about campaigning while in office. (I'd prefer a single 7 year term, but I think that would become too expensive, making those be completely out of sync with congressional races...).

Why is a high level of turnover a priori a good idea?

I'd flip it around and say that having career politicians who entrench themselves in an office and end up worrying more about raising money for their re-election than about actually representing the people and governing, that that is, a priori, NOT a good idea.
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Figs
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« Reply #35 on: October 16, 2015, 10:45:28 am »

Single terms are a bad idea. Then you end up like Mexico.

Given the fact that the electorate really doesn't pay enough attention to the process, term limits are the only way of ensuring a good level of turnover. The reason I think the executive branch should be limited to a single term is that it removes the need for the person holding the office of President from having to worry about campaigning while in office. (I'd prefer a single 7 year term, but I think that would become too expensive, making those be completely out of sync with congressional races...).

Why is a high level of turnover a priori a good idea?

I'd flip it around and say that having career politicians who entrench themselves in an office and end up worrying more about raising money for their re-election than about actually representing the people and governing, that that is, a priori, NOT a good idea.

Getting people with experience out of office, but leaving in place staffers and lobbyists who will find it easier to exert control over naifs seems like a bad idea to me. Why would your concerns not be addressed by modifying the relationship of money to campaigns, or by putting statutory time limits on campaign activity?
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #36 on: October 16, 2015, 11:46:35 am »

Single terms are a bad idea. Then you end up like Mexico.

Given the fact that the electorate really doesn't pay enough attention to the process, term limits are the only way of ensuring a good level of turnover. The reason I think the executive branch should be limited to a single term is that it removes the need for the person holding the office of President from having to worry about campaigning while in office. (I'd prefer a single 7 year term, but I think that would become too expensive, making those be completely out of sync with congressional races...).

Why is a high level of turnover a priori a good idea?

I'd flip it around and say that having career politicians who entrench themselves in an office and end up worrying more about raising money for their re-election than about actually representing the people and governing, that that is, a priori, NOT a good idea.

Getting people with experience out of office, but leaving in place staffers and lobbyists who will find it easier to exert control over naifs seems like a bad idea to me. Why would your concerns not be addressed by modifying the relationship of money to campaigns, or by putting statutory time limits on campaign activity?

If someone can come up with effective ways of modifying the relationship of money to campaigns or of putting statutory time limits on campaign activities, I'm all ears. I'm not suggesting that term limits are the only (or necessarily the best) way of getting a healthy rate of turnover back into the system, but I think they'd be effective, and I believe that the problem they address is far larger and more insidious than the one you mention. I mean, the "experienced" folks from both parties have brought us to the point where we are $18 trillion in the hole, have a completely bloated government structure, have an undecipherable tax code, have instituted a nonsensical foreign policy, and have managed to do it in such a way that the people point and shout "It's THEIR fault". That's my admittedly cynical view of where we stand and what the "experienced" politicians have done for the country; perhaps it's time to let the "inexperienced" folks have a shot.
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Figs
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« Reply #37 on: October 16, 2015, 11:48:51 am »

But again, why is turnover a priori important, if you can address the issues that you think are brought about by lack of turnover? You said that the issue is about people worrying about raising money and re-election more than doing their jobs. I asked about what you'd say if those issues were addressed, and you still seem to be stressing turnover as a positive good. Why?
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #38 on: October 16, 2015, 12:39:08 pm »

But again, why is turnover a priori important, if you can address the issues that you think are brought about by lack of turnover? You said that the issue is about people worrying about raising money and re-election more than doing their jobs. I asked about what you'd say if those issues were addressed, and you still seem to be stressing turnover as a positive good. Why?

No, like I say, I'm stressing entrenchment as a negative bad. We have reached a point where getting elected (and staying elected) have become the objective, an end in and of itself. That's what I object to. So how do you propose addressing entrenchment without fostering turnover? Perhaps I'm being dim here, but I think it's an either/or proposition, no?
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Figs
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« Reply #39 on: October 16, 2015, 12:43:58 pm »

You're positing that entrenchment is a bad that is worse than inexperience and naivete, but I'm not seeing any evidence for that assertion.

I'd say that the experience with the Freedom Caucus shows one of the negative results of legislators without almost any personal connection to each other or to the norms of the institution, which is what would happen more and more often with mandatory term limits. What incentive do members have to shore up the institution if they're going to be forced out in a couple of terms?

What you call entrenchment, I might call constituents deciding they like their representative and want him or her to keep representing them. Why should they be denied that choice arbitrarily?
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #40 on: October 16, 2015, 04:41:41 pm »

You're positing that entrenchment is a bad that is worse than inexperience and naivete, but I'm not seeing any evidence for that assertion.

As I say, the evidence is all around us: $18 trillion in the hole, a completely bloated government, an undecipherable tax code, hyper-partisanship, polls saying that most people think the country is on the wrong track, approval rating for elected officials down in the gutter, etc. In an ideal world, you are absolutely right, we should be able to rely on the people to choose their representatives, and be able to rely on those representatives to work well for the people who voted them in. But in an ideal world, you wouldn't need three branches of government to provide checks and balances. Basically, we have to protect ourselves from ourselves. We should expect members of congress, the president, and judges to act honorably within a government structured to be of, by, and for the people. This is NOT what we have today, so I think corrective measures are needed. We've had several congressmen that have stayed in office for over 50 years. Do you think that's a good thing? That they're all doing a stellar job, and that people are complaining for no good reason? Is the government that we have today what the founding fathers wanted? If so, my suggestion is without merit, but if we do in fact have a serious problem, perhaps we should look at ways of correcting that problem.
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Figs
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« Reply #41 on: October 16, 2015, 06:02:06 pm »

So tell me what you would say to a voter who wants to reelect his representative, and who you want to deny that right.
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #42 on: October 16, 2015, 08:07:33 pm »

So tell me what you would say to a voter who wants to reelect his representative, and who you want to deny that right.

The subject is changing the Constitution. Yes, this would be a change to the rules, so I suppose I'd tell such a voter the same thing I'd tell somebody today who wants a president to run for more than two terms: sorry, that's against the rules, as set forth in the Constitution. The beauty of the Constitution is that if things get too out of whack, we can adjust the document and move forward. No, it's not an easy thing to do, but it is doable.
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Figs
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« Reply #43 on: October 16, 2015, 08:57:24 pm »

I still don't see an argument that makes sense that the problems you keep pointing out are caused by the thing you're saying is causing them. It's fine to assert, but you don't have any evidence to back up the assertion of causality, or that your prescription would fix the problems you cite.
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SillyAmerican
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« Reply #44 on: October 17, 2015, 08:08:02 am »

I still don't see an argument that makes sense that the problems you keep pointing out are caused by the thing you're saying is causing them. It's fine to assert, but you don't have any evidence to back up the assertion of causality, or that your prescription would fix the problems you cite.

Fair enough. I believe that career politicians are at the root of the problem, and you believe otherwise. Ok, I understand. I've indicated how I'd go about trying to fix the problem. Given that folks are beginning to recognize that there is a problem, and that we've been operating in a rather insane way (you know, repeatedly doing the same thing and expecting different results), I think it would be worth a try. I fear for the health of our republic, I really do. So I'd ask you: (1) Do you think we have a problem? (2) What do you think is causing the problem? (3) What would you suggest we do to fix it?
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politicallefty
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« Reply #45 on: October 17, 2015, 02:51:36 pm »

I would transform the US into a parliamentary system. I posted this amendment some time ago, which could now, upon further reflection, probably be revised in a few ways:

Section 1. The executive Power shall be transferred from the President and vested in a Prime Minister of the United States, who shall be chosen by a majority vote of the whole membership of the House of Representatives upon its convention. The Prime Minister shall first choose a Cabinet, which shall be established by Law and subject to confirmation by the House of Representatives.

Section 2. The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every fourth Year by the People of the several States, except upon a majority of Representatives having voted to declare non-confidence in the Prime Minister and Cabinet. If the House of Representatives has voted to declare non-confidence, the House of Representatives shall be dissolved and the Prime Minister shall order Writs of Election for all Representatives to occur no sooner than thirty days and no later than sixty days upon such declaration. The House of Representatives shall convene for its Term no later than thirty days upon its Election.

Section 3. The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for Representatives shall be prescribed by Congress.

Section 4. Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate shall become Law.

Section 5. This amendment shall take effect upon the next Election of the House of Representatives occurring no sooner than ninety days after the date of ratification.


That's my attempt at adopting a parliamentary system for the US (with the Senate left untouched). I'm not a lawyer, so the language may not be entirely perfect in establishing my intent.

Section 3 was primarily designed to take away any state control over federal elections. I'd like to expand upon it to outlaw gerrymandering nationwide (or at least very seriously mitigate partisan and incumbency influences in redistricting). I'm unsure as to how to resolve Senate elections with a new system for the House. One consideration is to divide the Senate into two classes (every state would have one Senate seat up per election), with each alternating upon every House election (regardless of duration). Furthermore, I would also now include an absolute right to vote for every citizen age 18 and up. And, lastly, I'm unsure as to whether or not to leave a figurehead President.

I may work on that text above to better perfect my intentions.
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Murica!
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« Reply #46 on: October 17, 2015, 10:14:26 pm »

A constitutional amendment banning constitutional amendments of course.
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angus
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« Reply #47 on: October 18, 2015, 01:47:32 pm »

Abolish both chambers of the US Congress and replace it with one chamber that has about 1.5 times as many members as the current US House.  Each member serves five-year terms and is remunerated annually at the rate of exactly two times the most recent year's median annual household income.

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Figs
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« Reply #48 on: October 18, 2015, 05:02:07 pm »

Seems to me that measures to limit Congress's pay would only further limit membership to the independently wealthy.
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angus
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« Reply #49 on: October 18, 2015, 05:42:06 pm »

Seems to me that measures to limit Congress's pay would only further limit membership to the independently wealthy.

Jobs that pay a hundred thousand dollars a year limit membership to the independently wealthy? 

You and I must come from different sides of the tracks.
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