Various federal agencies were authorized to provide a reasonable level of material and staff support for the convention as requested.Convention ProceduresConvention planning proposals generally included the following provisions governing procedures.The Vice President was designated in most proposed convention procedures bills to preside over the inaugural convention session, primarily for the purpose of election and installation the convention officers, as chosen by the delegates. After this initial session, the permanent officers would oversee the adoption of convention rules and procedures and preside over subsequent sessions.While earlier legislation would have provided for approval of proposed amendments by a simple majority of convention delegates, later versions generally substituted a two-thirds majority of delegates, voting per capita, for approval. Amendments were required to address the issue for which the convention was summoned. In most versions, as noted earlier in this report, Congress reserved the right to reject a proposed amendment that failed to meet this standard.Unless the House and Senate passed a concurrent resolution of disapproval, the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of 78American Bar Association, Amendment of the Constitution by the Convention Method under Article V, pp. 36-37. 79Caplan, Constitutional Brinksmanship, p. 119. 80This question is addressed at greater length later in this report. 81Is There a Constitutional Convention in America’s Future?pp. 18-19. 82Natelson, Amending the Constitution by Convention: A Complete View of the Founders’ Plan, pp. 22-23.
The Article V Convention: Contemporary Issues for Congress Congressional Research Service 22 Representatives were required to refer approved proposed amendments to the Administrator of General Services83for circulation to the states for ratification. Valid grounds for congressional disapproval of a proposed amendment included not only a departure from the policy issue for which the convention had been called, but also failure to follow procedures prescribed in the authorizing legislation. Amendments proposed by a convention would be subject to ratification by state legislatures or ad hoc conventions at the discretion of Congress.A Limited Term for the ConventionMost planning bills provided a term of six months or one year for an Article V Convention.State Authority to Rescind Ratification of Proposed AmendmentsIn general, state legislatures would have been authorized to rescind ratification of a proposed amendment any time during the process, but not after the constitutionally-mandated threshold of three-fourths of the states was reached.Judicial ReviewMost versions of convention planning legislation introduced later in the period would have established procedures for challenges to, and judicial review of, congressional rejection of a convention-approved amendment.