Illinois joins call for convention to amend US Constitution


SPRINGFIELD — Illinois State lawmakers have joined several other states to call for a Constitutional Convention to amend the U.S. Constitution when it comes to campaign finance reform.

During debate on the House floor Wednesday, State Rep. Chapa LaVia said calls for the convention are to address campaign finance and the scope cannot go farther than that.

But outgoing State Rep. Mike Bost, who recently won an election to the U.S. House, says once the door is opened, anything is possible.

“Once you open and you do a Constitutional convention, it is not going to be and cannot be focused just on one issue, you must then open up – because it’s a Constitutional Convention – you will be dealing with the entire Constitution,” Bost said.

Bost says the danger is there could be unforeseen changes that are detrimental to the Constitutional Republic.

State Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie said she has similar concerns but she has greater concerns about campaign finance laws.

“Whether I’m right or they’re right on the question can it be a runaway convention, but … maybe Congress will, if we act … finally wake up and say ‘let’s get the job done,’” she said.

Chapa LaVia said Illinois’ application joins at least three other states under the same scope in hopes the movement doesn’t lead to a so-called “runaway convention.”

The U.S. Constitution states two-thirds of the several states, or 34 states, must agree to a convention. The last national constitutional convention was in the 18th century to amend the articles of confederation, the predecessor to the U.S. Constitution.