Madison shelved all prior proposals, introduced a new resolution in which Congress alone proposed amendments, and it passed.

This bit always struck me as a rush job.

For a month they’d been working with Wilson’s draft from the Committee of Detail. That draft, if you recall, said amendments would be proposed by 2/3 of the state legislatures, and ratified by a national convention.

Then on September 10, there was a lot of argument over it, culminating in Wilson’s new version saying amendments would be proposed by 2/3 of the states, and ratified by 3/4 of the states. The convention idea had vanished along the way.

At which point Madison jumped in with this completely different last-minute substitute motion. The convention shelved Wilson’s indefinitely, voted on Madison’s, and passed it 9 to 1. Madison had re-introduced ratification by convention, but now state control of the process had disappeared!

Just days away from September 15, the last day of business for the convention, they now…

…well, we’ll see what happened next on the next page!

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Join the conversation! There are now 5 comments on “What were they thinking? Pg 29
  1. You work on something long enough and you are bound to make a hasty decision just to get it the heck over with. I am anyway.

  2. I hate to be That Guy, but I don’t understand how the blackboard could be rotating on that axis. As far as I can tell it would have to be mounted on an axle stuck through the front and back.

    That said, your work is enjoyable, accessible, and informative as always. I have kids (now 10 and 12) that have read your two published volumes multiple times and can (and do, sometimes _ad nauseam_) accurately paraphrase big chunks of it. :) Thanks!

      • It’s never too late for comments here. Some really good discussions started long after the original post date.

        And thanks for catching the typo! I always appreciate that.

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