Diagnosis for Democracy
Insights into the State of Our Union
A Blog by Rob Tenery, MD


October 19, 2015: One Election Away from a Possible Constitutional Convention

By Rob Tenery, MD on October 19, 2015

Unchecked immigration not only potentially changes this country's culture; it also changes the way it will be governed and who will be elected to the White house.

There are two legal determinants: First is in appropriation of the state’s representation in the US House of Representatives. The Constitution provides for proportional representation in the House of Representatives and the seats in the House are apportioned based on the state's population according to the Constitutionally mandated Census. The second is the number of votes for Electoral College that determines the outcome in the election for President. A state's number of electoral votes equals the number of the state's Congressional delegation—- the number of U.S. Senators and the number of U.S. Representatives.

The United States census, taken every 10 years, counts every person, regardless of their immigration status.  The United States accepts around 1 million legal immigrants per year. Add to that number approximately 1.25 million illegal immigrants per year and their growing voice becomes significant.

According to the 2009 National Population Projection by the US Census Bureau, approximately 50% of immigrants come from Mexico and Latin America and around 20% from the Asian countries. Using the last 2012 Presidential election as an example, 71% of voters with Hispanic origin and 73% coming from Asia voted for Obama over Romney. An additional study by the Pew Research Center found that about 70% of Muslims associate more closely with the Democratic Party. Being that the Democratic Party campaigns on expansion of the entitlement programs, the voting patterns by these groups are logical.  

Thus, it seems reasonable to assume that with the continuing trends of a very porous border with Mexico and the push by the current Administration to admit more refugees from the Syrian uprising that are predominately of Muslim faith, this country will become increasingly blue. The lack of assimilation by these immigrants creates culture problems as these immigrants struggle to build a new life. But it is their very presence in this country, since they are included in the census count that is used to determine each states' representation in the House of Representatives, and thus the Electoral College.

"The Republican Party has failed to understand the importance of this issue to our Hispanic voters," Senator John McCain said, referring to the 2012 Presidential election results. "I think the trend in the demographics of states like mine, means that we will go from Republican to Democrat over time.

If the course this country is taking does not make an abrupt change to the right after this next election, a Constitutional Convention of the States could be the only remaining hope. To convene this body, it takes 34 states that would address the out-of-control spending commitments, a judicial branch that makes the law rather than interprets the law and an Executive branch that ignores the Constitution. However, it will take the support of 38 states to ratify any amendments to the Constitution. So far, 27 states have filed active petitions with Congress supporting a Constitutional convention. 13 additional states have been targeted to get their support.

It’s important to remember that this country was built on the coming together of individual states. But, when this country’s leadership in Washington extends its authority by usurping the rights of the citizens of those states that are guaranteed by the Constitution, then the states must, once again, take back their authority.

 





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