Speaking before an Iowa crowd yesterday, presidential contender and U.S. Senator Marco Rubio announced that he would push for an Article Five Convention of States in order to achieve new limits on the federal government.
“As President,” said Rubio, “I will put the weight of the presidency behind a constitutional convention of states so we can pass term limits on members of Congress and the Supreme Court and so we can get get a balanced budget.”
“You’ll never get it out of this Congress,” Rubio said. “This is the only way you’ll ever get term limits and a balanced budget.”
Rubio is the third presidential candidate to endorse Convention of States Project, a nationwide grassroots effort that is focused on using Article Five of the Constitution to institute constitutional reforms. Bobby Jindal and Mike Huckabee have also endorsed COS, while several other candidates have expressed their general support. More than 30 states will consider their resolution in 2016.
“It is gratifying when a national-level leader like Sen. Marco Rubio acknowledges that it is imperative for the citizens to act to take power away from Washington, D.C. and return it to the people,” said Mark Meckler, President of Citizens for Self-Governance and a co-founder of Convention of States Project.
“Sen. Rubio stated that Washington D.C. will not impose limitations on itself, and that the people must do it through a convention. He says we can’t rely on D.C., and he’s right. What a great thing to hear from a Presidential candidate! The Convention of States movement has entered the mainstream of the Presidential election.”
Article Five of the Constitution says that when two-thirds (34) of the states pass a similar resolution, they can meet to propose new constitutional reforms. Supporters see this as the only viable way to get a balanced budget, congressional and judicial term limits, and other limits on the government. Regardless of which party has been in power over the past century, federal power has continued to centralize and the national debt is nearing $19 trillion.
Former U.S. Senator Tom Coburn released a statement in response to Rubio’s endorsement.
“Marco Rubio knows that the answers to American’s lack of confidence in Washington can only be fixed through an Article V Convention of States, restoring power to the states and the people by limiting the scope and power in Washington; placing term limits on politicians, forcing honest accounting and balanced budgets,” Coburn said. “He also knows that Washington will not fix itself.”
This development helps to shore up Rubio’s support among grassroots activists while putting pressure on other candidates to choose a side.