South Carolina Debates The Call For A Federal Balanced Budget Amendment

Columbia, SC — Every legislative session has its signature moment when a piece of landmark legislation is signed into law by the governor.  This year will be no different.  The South Carolina legislature is grappling with education, roads, ethics and protections for battered women and abused children.  One of the most important pieces of legislation that South Carolina will consider is S-30, a resolution which calls for a Convention of the States for the limited purpose of proposing a federal balanced budget amendment.

If the South Carolina House and Senate were to pass S-30, the ‘Palmetto State’ would join twenty-five other States that have passed similar legislation which collectively taps into the vast powers granted to the States under Article V of the U.S. Constitution.  This authority empowers the States, upon the application of two-thirds the State legislatures, to call a convention to propose amendment(s) which three-quarters (38) of the States must ratify. 

Aligned against S-30 are the John Birch Society and Ron Paul’s Campaign for Liberty.  The true puppet-master behind the scenes however, is the tin-foil-hat-wearing JBS which has long been known for its obsession and paranoia regarding a convention which it claims will ‘run-away’ and destroy the Constitution.  All that, despite the fact that per Article-V and our founding fathers, convention delegates can only PROPOSE amendments, not RATIFY them.

The opposition of the Ron Paul Campaign for Liberty is odd considering the fact that his son, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, is a strong supporter of the campaign to propose a balanced budget amendment via Article V. 

The Campaign for Liberty and the John Birch Society have long enjoyed a friendly relationship.  Former Congressman Ron Paul has spoken at numerous JBS events and has long been a favorite of the Appleton, Wisconsin based organization which shares his penchant for odd-ball conspiracy theories.  For example, the John Birch Society’s founder, Robert Welch, once called President Dwight Eisenhower a “conscious, dedicated agent of the communist conspiracy,” and claimed that Eisenhower was under the control of Soviet agents.

This week, the Campaign for Liberty disseminated a JBS propaganda piece to hundreds of thousands of members across a number of states (including South Carolina) which warned about the threat of a ‘run-away’ convention posed by all Article V resolutions including S-30.  Their opposition is so blanket, it wouldn’t matter if you proposed an amendment to end the FED, abolish abortion or protect traditional marriage—issues near and dear to the JBS—they would mindlessly tell you to oppose these resolutions, no matter what their purpose.

This unimaginative mentality makes sense when tied to the ‘copy and paste’ look of the letters that were sent out by the Campaign for Liberty honchos in each state.  This lack of originality has characterized the JBS ‘run-away’ convention tripe for over thirty years—its misinformed minions mindlessly and endlessly ranting about the same old tired out disproven ‘run-away’ convention claim.

The threat of a ‘run-away’ convention was first floated by leftists such as Supreme Court Justice Arthur Goldberg and then again by Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger.  They did so in order to protect a number of unpopular Supreme Court decisions (Prayer in Schools, Roe vs. Wade, etc.) from Republican state lawmakers who were threatening to reverse them via their power under Article V of the U.S. Constitution. 

The ‘run-away’ convention myth was also employed by liberal V.P. Walter Mondale and a cabal of leftist groups to scare Republican state lawmakers away from proposing the Ronald Reagan-backed balanced budget amendment (BBA).  The BBA campaign eventually reached 32 states (just 2 shy of the 34 required to call a convention) before it ran out of steam due to the ‘run-away’ convention ranting of the JBS which bought into the left-wing propaganda. 

Overnight, the John Birch Society became the greatest national proponent of the ‘run-away’ convention theory, despite the fact that Ronald Reagan dismissed it in a 1979 radio interview:

“Voices have been raised warning of danger that a convention would open the door to all manner of proposed amendments. In my view, those who warn of this show little faith in our democratic procedures.”

Sadly, the JBS has been duped by those on the far left into attacking the only constitutional method by which the rural right-leaning states it represents can push back against the overreaching policies of liberals in Washington.  All the while they naively proclaim nullification as the cure for all that ails us, despite the fact that any state law (including nullification laws) can be declared unconstitutional by the federal courts.

The only way for the states to push back against the federal government is to pass legislation like S-30 which seeks to propose and ratify a balanced budget amendment that would send the debt-addicts in Congress to a constitutionally mandated rehab clinic. 

For the first time in thirty years, the John Birch Society is being confronted by a broad coalition of well-informed Republican groups who now recognize Article V as the only remaining method by which to bring the power-hungry federal beast in DC to heal at the foot of its true master: ‘We the American People!’  

One of the greatest generals in American history, President Dwight D. Eisenhower, whom the JBS couldn’t stand, said it best when he described his own belief in a Convention of the States.

“Through their state legislatures and without regard to the federal government, the people can demand a convention to propose amendments that can and will reverse any trends they see as fatal to true representative government.”

It is time that ‘We the American People’ take the advice of the hero who led us to victory over the NAZIS in WW II and presided over two prosperous terms as president.  In Ike’s own words, ‘we must demand a convention to propose amendments that can and will reverse any trends we see as fatal to true representative government!’

I encourage you to act on the advice of Ronald Reagan, Rand Paul and Dwight D. Eisenhower by supporting S-30, in order to prevent national bankruptcy and save the American dream for future generations.

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