To be fair, Fox Nation took its headline from the Wall Street Journal editorial that was excerpted. But the Journal's article was called, OK, Let's Debate Gun Control! "Civil," "tolerant" Fox Nation ignored that in favor the more inflammatory attack on Obama. It's worth noting that the only context in which Obama's name is mentioned in the Fox Nation excerpt is a complaint from New York City's Mayor Bloomberg that Obama is not doing enough on behalf of gun control. (H/T Aria)
For those who replied, “an amendment,” you go to the head of the class.
Now, according to that little document that (one presumes at least) the FoxNationalists respect—the US Constitution (well, they respect it as long as it says what they want but here, they have to respect it since it shows how little chance there is of the Second’s imminent demise—especially during the four paltry years that Obama’s second term would comprise). The Constitution states there are two manners in which an amendment can be added (and one of these has NEVER been used in the entire history of the USofA). The first is the standard presentation of a bill in both Houses of Congress which must be passed by a 2/3 majority in each House (and considering the incredibly partisan attitude in Congress, that ain’t a-happenin’). It is then presented to the states for their approval, with a required 3/4 majority of the states (currently the magic number is 38) needed for the bill to become an amendment. (As an aside, the bill must be worded identically in both Houses—if there’s even the slightest difference, the bill must be presented to a committee which will attempt to forge a single bill that both Houses will vote on.)
The second way for an amendment to be added is via Constitutional Convention. For this to take place, 2/3 of all the States’ legislatures must agree to a meeting at which any number of proposals are submitted for the purpose of becoming amendments (at this time, the magic number there is 34—2/3 of 50 is 33.333, so you have to round up). Once the Convention has passed a proposed amendment, it then has to be presented to the States (as above) and is subject to the same 3/4 requirement to be added. This process has never been employed in our history, and given the highly partisan nature now found in state legislatures, it would be next to impossible for this to happen now.
(Incidentally, I’ve made no mention of the President’s role in this process for a simple reason: He has no role. He cannot veto a proposed amendment; he cannot veto a ratification. He can offer his opinion on the matter, but that’s it.)
Now, for the state ratification process, there are two ways this can be done: First, by the State Legislature (the usual procedure); and Second, by a Statewide Convention (done only once—for the 21st to repeal Prohibition). A simple majority vote (50% + 1) is all that’s required in either process.
Since the Constitution was first written in 1787, there have been only 27 amendments added in the ensuing 225 years. The first 10 were officially ratified in 1791 (after having been presented to the states in 1789; Virginia was the 11th state—Vermont’s entry into the union as the 14th state in 1791 upped the required 3/4 from 10 of 13 to 11 of 14). From 1791 through the Civil War, only 2 amendments were passed. From 1865 to 1920, a grand total of 7 amendments were ratified (3 of which happened between 1865 and 1870; the other 4 were ratified between 1913 and 1920). The next 6 were ratified between 1933 and 1971, and the most recent was ratified in 1992 (it was actually proposed in 1789 as part of the Bill of Rights but was ratified by only 6 states between 1789 and 1791; the next ratification wouldn’t happen until 1873 and it would lay dormant again until 1978 before finally picking up major steam in 1983 after which another 31 states would ratify the amendment by 1992). Additionally, there’s really no official time limit on the amendments. Only 4 amendments have explicitly mandated a 7-year period during ratification must happen or the proposed amendment becomes null but it’s become a “tradition” (according to the actual text of the proposed ERA, there is NO time limit; however, it appears that there was an “unwritten” 7-year rule involved which is why more recent proposals have explicitly included the time limit). During the ratification of the 20th century amendments (except for the 27th Amendment—including that would really skew the numbers), the shortest time between proposal and ratification was 100 days (that was for the 26th which lowered the voting age to 18); the average length, however, has been 546 days or roughly a year and a half and there’s been NO proposed amendment since 1971 that’s met the 3/4 ratification process in even 7 years. According to USConstitution.net, a study by C-SPAN indicated that the number of proposed amendments dropped in each session of Congress from 214 offered by the 101st Congress (1989-90) to only 103 offered by the 105th Congress (1998-99)—an era which, when compared to today’s Congress, was a model of bipartisanship and civility.
Now, where have I been going with all this information? Simply this: That President Obama, who couldn’t even get his own party to support his original health care program, would NEVER be able to get a 2/3 majority in both houses of Congress to agree to an amendment that would rescind the 2nd Amendment. And even if he could, it’s an absolute absurdity to think that 38 states would ratify such an amendment. And, in all reality, the folks at FoxNation know this but presenting the actual facts of a story has never been the goal at FoxNoise or any of its affiliated liars.
God, they pissed off both sides that day.
I checked it for most of the day on Monday and if they updated the information I didn’t see it. They definitely didn’t post his picture standing in front of the Nazi Swastika flag.
Their coverage was typical of what you would figure from them.