While Congress is unlikely to propose a term limits amendment 91 Id 92 307 US

While congress is unlikely to propose a term limits

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While Congress is unlikely to propose a term limits amendment, 91. Id. 92. 307 U.S. 433 (1939). See also Ronald D. Rotunda, Running Out of Time: Can the E.R.A. Be Saved, 64 A.B.A. J. 1504, 1507 (1978) (discussing Coleman v. Miller and the "political questions" doctrine); VILE, supra note 41, at 23. 93. Coleman, 307 U.S. at 456. 94. Id at 450. 95. See Stewart Dalzell & Eric J. Beste, Is the Twenty-Seventh Amendment 200 Years Too Late?, 62 GEO. WASH. L. REv. 501, 544-45 (1994) (arguing that the question is justiciable). Other commentators argue that such issues should be nonjusticiable and are inappropriate for judicial review. See also ROTUNDA & NOWAK, supra note 14, at 283-286. See, e.g., Fritz W. Scharpf, Judicial Review and the Political Question: A Functional Analysis, 75 YALE L. J. 517, 589 (1966). 96. Lincoln, First Inaugural Address, reprinted in 4 THE COLLECTED WORKS OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN, supra note 22, at 269. 1996]
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MARQUETTE LAW REVIEW thirty-four state legislatures may well petition Congress to convene a convention. Proponents of this action maintain that Congress is incapable of limiting its own terms, therefore, a convention is necessary. Opponents fear any use of conventions, even though Article V specifical- ly approves of this method. They claim that convention delegates might mount an assault on the Constitution. However, the convention method of amendment is not only a safe method of amendment, it is also an integral part of the constitutional system of checks and balances. The Framers wisely intended the convention method to be a vital counter- weight against Congress' power to block amendments. As the campaign for direct elections to the U.S. Senate demonstrated, the threat of a convention is sometimes necessary to force consideration of amendments that challenge the self-interest of Capital Hill lawmakers. The convening of a convention is, of course, a serious and complex matter. It should not be taken lightly. Americans and their representa- tives in state legislatures and in Congress should not allow misinforma- tion to divert them from employing this wisely crafted provision. When Congress fails to propose needed constitutional amendments, policy makers should not hesitate to use the convention method of amendment. [Vol. 80:227
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