On December 30, presidential candidate Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) announced he would endorse an Article V convention for the purpose of enacting a federal balanced budget amendment, along with term limits for Congress and the U.S. Supreme Court.
“One of the things I’m going to do on my first day in office: I will announce that I am a supporter, and as president I will put the weight of the presidency behind a constitutional convention of the states so we can pass term limits on members of Congress and the Supreme Court and so we can pass a balanced budget amendment,” said Rubio during a campaign rally in Iowa.
Opponents of the Article V movement, such as Common Cause and the John Birch Society, have long alleged an Article V convention could be opened up to special-interest lobbying and the possibility of a complete rewrite of the U.S. Constitution. Rubio acknowledged that a convention would have to be limited in its scope.
“I think you’d have to limit the convention, and that’s what they’re proposing: a very limited convention on specific, delineated issues like term limits and like a balanced budget amendment,” said Rubio.
Rubio did acknowledge limitations on the scope of the convention would be necessary to prevent delegates from going rogue.
Twenty-seven states have already enacted applications calling for an Article V convention that would be limited to just a single subject: a balanced budget amendment. Convention of States, another proposal that combines a balanced budget amendment and term limits, has been enacted in four states. Compact for America has also been enacted in four states.
The compact proposal is a hybrid method that combines a balanced budget amendment along with a separate interstate compact agreement that would outline the procedures for calling a convention.
Rubio joins many other Republican presidential candidates who have called for a convention, such as former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Sen. Ted Cruz (TX), former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, and Sen. Rand Paul (KY).