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posted by martyb on Friday December 11 2015, @05:50AM   Printer-friendly
from the pandora's-box dept.

The U.S. Constitution has 27 amendments; each was proposed by Congress and ratified by the states.

However, the Constitution sets forth another procedure, never before used, for amending the Constitution. At the request of two thirds of the states, a constitutional convention would be held, at which amendments could be proposed. Any proposals would become part of the Constitution if three fourths of the states ratified them, either at state conventions or in the state legislatures.

Currently, 27 of the needed 34 states have petitioned Congress for a constitutional convention, for the ostensible purpose of writing a balanced-budget amendment (BBA). However, the convention might propose other changes in addition or instead of a BBA—even a total rewrite of the Constitution—if 38 states agreed, the changes would become law.

In November, legislators from 30 states met in Salt Lake City to discuss the matter.


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  • (Score: 2) by FatPhil on Friday December 11 2015, @09:28AM

    by FatPhil (863) <reversethis-{if.fdsa} {ta} {tnelyos-cp}> on Friday December 11 2015, @09:28AM (#274895) Homepage
    "Origin"? I assure you "some of my best friends are black" predates that frothy mixture by decades.
    --
    I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
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  • (Score: 1) by khallow on Friday December 11 2015, @09:38AM

    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Friday December 11 2015, @09:38AM (#274898) Journal

    I assure you "some of my best friends are black" predates that frothy mixture by decades.

    Find an example from before 1908 then.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 11 2015, @10:10AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 11 2015, @10:10AM (#274905)

      Earliest recorded political use, maybe.

      There's many other much earlier examples of similar phrases in a similar vein, though. For example, here's one from a biography of an Irish Catholic priest published in the first half of the 19th century:

      And on another occasion, when he thought it necessary to defend himself from an unjust aspersion-

      "It is for the sake of those connected with me as well as myself, that I enter into this vindication. I entertain no ill-feeling towards any person on account of his religious opinions. My nearest relatives are members of the Established Church, and my best friends are Quakers, Protestants, and Presbyterians"

      Pretty much exactly the same sentiment as your 1908 quote - which is itself different from the more recent "I'm not X-ist; some of my best friends are X" stereotype.

    • (Score: 4, Interesting) by FatPhil on Friday December 11 2015, @10:30AM

      by FatPhil (863) <reversethis-{if.fdsa} {ta} {tnelyos-cp}> on Friday December 11 2015, @10:30AM (#274912) Homepage
      I confess to having completely misread your post! I saw the link (mentioning Santorum in the URL), but when I followed it, I got a mostly blank page with no visible textual content, hastily retreated, and presumed that you were referring to Santorum's use of the phrase, not noticing that you'd quoted the important part.

      Now I revist that page in lynx, I see there is actually some content, and it looks like a well-researched piece. I wouldn't be surprised if there were earlier instances, but finding them might be hard. The article was yankocentric, of course, there could well be English (or other European) examples much earlier. It also restricts itself to "political use", which means that orignal use by the journalistic wits before that time (of which the US was replete) may have been overlooked. And it completely misses all possible uses of it in fiction. It's certainly an interesting puzzle.

      Without having any evidence for it, I would be surprised if none of the ancient Greek playwrights ever penned any rhetoric along those lines in any of their comedies. It just seems like a classic comedic line.

      However, first use with a straight face non-ironically as if it was a sensible argument? It's quite possible 1908's it. Thanks for digging that out, and sorry about my confusion!
      --
      I know I'm God, because every time I pray to him, I find I'm talking to myself.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 11 2015, @11:01AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 11 2015, @11:01AM (#274920)

        Modded up for a) being polite and b) not being a defensive knee-jerk savaging[1] of the poster who disagreed with you.
        I know it's of very minor consequence and amounts to bugger all in the real world, but thank you for being civil to someone you originally disagreed with.

        [1] Now I've read that back, it looks like I'm describing a knee to the groin. Not entirely inappropriate given how this sort of back-and-forth usually goes.

        • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Saturday December 12 2015, @06:08AM

          by aristarchus (2645) on Saturday December 12 2015, @06:08AM (#275318) Journal

          And this is why I post to SoylentNews! The most off-beat (but, unfortunately, on topic) post can result in the meeting of minds and the setting straight of the historical record, and reconciliation amongst all but the truly deranged. Well done, AC and FatPhil! Well done.

          --
          "Believe it or not, your opinion on this topic is really not necessary,"