This website uses cookies to improve your experience.

Please enable cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website

Sign the petition

to call for a

Convention of States!


Core values - Constitutional originalism & responsible self-governance

Published in Blog on January 17, 2023 by Jakob Fay

Last week, Convention of States Action proudly launched its new and improved core values. Appropriately at the top of the list is our movement’s commitment to preserve constitutional originalism and foster responsible self-governance.

We would not be here today–as an organization or as a country–if not for the brilliance of our Founding Fathers. Crafting the new nation and bringing 13 independent colonies into one Republic was no easy task. Founding a Republic that would somehow resist the gradual onset of tyranny was an even harder one.

By God’s grace, they succeeded, and the wisdom they infused into our governing documents is worth adhering to. Unfortunately, there is a movement today to disregard the Founder’s original intent and instead view the Constitution, in the words of Woodrow Wilson, as a “vehicle of life.”

In his book “What is Progress?”, Wilson, a prominent leader of the Progressive movement, applied Darwinian evolution to constitutional interpretation. He said our founding documents would be “of no consequence” unless modern Americans were allowed to “translate its general terms into examples of the present day."

"All that progressives ask or desire is permission—in an era when 'development,' 'evolution,' is the scientific word—to interpret the Constitution according to the Darwinian principle; all they ask is recognition of the fact that a nation is a living thing and not a machine," he boldly declared.

This “living,” “evolving” Constitution, popularized by Wilson, was left to be interpreted at the whim of political elites. The Supreme Court in particular abused this privilege, running roughshod over that singular document.

And that’s where constitutional originalism comes in.

Originalism seeks to understand the original meaning of the Founders’ language and pays little heed to modern “interpretations.” Proponents actively work to restore limited, constitutional government, federalism, individual rights, and America as the beacon of freedom to the World, and resist elitist attempts to rewrite the Constitution to fit their agendas.

Arguably the leading modern advocate for constitutional originalism, Antonin Scalia defined his political philosophy: “The Constitution that I interpret and apply is not living but dead, or as I prefer to call it, enduring. It means today not what current society, much less the court, thinks it ought to mean, but what it meant when it was adopted."

Another proponent, Clarence Thomas, said anything less than originalism “usurps power from the people.”

This goes hand in hand with our next core value: self-governance.

True liberty requires personal responsibility and individual accountability. The surest way for the American people to stave off the gradual onset of tyranny that comes from ignoring our founding documents is to practice self-governance.

John Adams suggested as much when he said “Avarice, Ambition, Revenge or Galantry, would break the strongest Cords of our Constitution as a Whale goes through a Net.” His point: not even the greatest political document in the history of man would withstand if the American people did not bridle their passions.

This, of course, requires responsible self-governance.

Generations later, Ronald Reagan said the fundamental political issue of his day was whether we “believe in our capacity for self-government or whether we abandon the American revolution and confess that a little intellectual elite in a far-distant capitol can plan our lives for us better than we can plan them ourselves.”

He urged the American people to resist the government overreach that stemmed from a disregard for originalism. They would have to decide between the Constitution and self-governance or, as Reagan said, free man’s “last stand on earth.”

Now, the same question is asked of us: will we confess that a little intellectual elite in a far-distant capitol can plan our lives for us better than we can plan them ourselves? Or will we cling to the American revolution and hold true to the documents our Founders gave us? Will we embrace self-governance and ensure that the freedom to do so is passed down to posterity?

This is our time for choosing.

Convention of States Action consists of a grassroots army of over five million self-governing patriots. By choosing to embrace our core values, we can begin today to reclaim the Republic our Founders envisioned.

Sign the petition to call for a Convention of States!

2,448,450 signatures

Petition your state legislator

Almost everyone knows that our federal government is on a dangerous course. The unsustainable debt combined with crushing regulations on states and businesses is a recipe for disaster.

What is less known is that the Founders gave state legislatures the power to act as a final check on abuses of power by Washington, DC. Article V of the U.S. Constitution authorizes the state legislatures to call a convention for proposing needed amendments to the Constitution. This process does not require the consent of the federal government in Washington, DC.

I support the Convention of States Project; a national effort to call a convention under Article V of the United States Constitution, restricted to proposing amendments that will impose fiscal restraints on the federal government, limit its power and jurisdiction, and impose term limits on its officials and members of Congress.

I want our state to be one of the necessary 34 states to pass a resolution calling for this kind of Article V Convention. You can find a copy of the model resolution and the Article V Pocket Guide (which explains the process and answers many questions) here:

I ask that you support the Convention of States Project and consider becoming a co-sponsor of the resolution. Please respond to my request by informing the national COS team of your position, or sending them any questions you may have: or (540) 441-7227.

Thank you so much for your service to the people of our district.

Respectfully, [Your Name]

By checking this box, you agree to receive text messages sent via an “autodialer”. Our text messages are intended to inform you of events, calls to action, volunteering opportunities, and other matters pertaining to self-governance. Text STOP to stop receiving messages. Text HELP for more info. Message frequency varies. Message and data rates may apply. View Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Provide your full address and we will deliver your petition directly to your state legislators now and again during the legislative sessions, Free of Charge. We Protect your privacy.

We welcome all US citizens to support our movement by signing the petition. To deliver the petition to your state legislators, you must enter your full address, which must be within one of the 50 states. For military personnel serving overseas, or for expatriates, enter your Voting Residence Address .

Please be sure to check the "Send me email updates" box, and include your phone number above.

How did you hear about us:

Click here to get involved!
Convention of states action

Are you sure you don't want emailed updates on our progress and local events? We respect your privacy, but we don't want you to feel left out!