Phony Petitions. Mark Meckler, President of Convention of States
(COS), hypes the thousands of online petitions COS provides to
legislators nationwide; he touts them as evidence of widespread
support from constituents for the COS application asking Congress
to call an Article V convention (A5C). But wait!
In 2018, two Idaho legislators reported that the COS petitions they
received, were digitally “signed” by some constituents who, when contacted, said they never
signed. Representative Priscilla Giddings (R) called this practice “hi-tech fraud.” Representative
Dorothy Moon (R) called it “dirty tricks.” Moreover, COS apparently accumulates signatures
for life (or longer). In 2016, a South Dakota state senator received a COS petition from his dead
At a contentious IDAHO MEETING, Meckler, in justifying the illegitimate
petitions, admitted, “I can’t tell you whether…it is plausible that at some point, somebody typed
in somebody else’s name and address. I can’t stop that, obviously…It’s possible…they forget
that they [signed], because sometimes—say it’s 2 years ago…and they don’t remember filling
these things out; some of them have changed their minds.” What does this say about the
supposed army of millions that Meckler boasts about?!
Meckler denied any suggestion of COS’s fabricating signatures as “outrageous, and frankly
offensive.” He invited Rep. Moon to meet with his technology people, conduct her own security
investigation, and “determine if [COS is] doing the best we possibly can”!
Meckler added, “I will not claim [the COS system] is perfect. Because people from the outside
always, somebody could fill out somebody else’s name and information…There’s no
identification system on the internet.”
If Meckler can’t guarantee that any particular digital signatures are valid, he can’t guarantee any
of his numbers are real. Fraud or no fraud—the system is inherently flawed; and it doesn’t matter
whether or not the COS technology team is doing “the best [they] possibly can”! Meckler is
delivering nothing more than raw, unverified, and thus worthless data to legislators in a
shameless attempt to influence their votes.
Meckler has testified before numerous legislative committees and said that roughly
2/3 of their states’ voters across party
lines, as polled, support the COS application asking Congress to
call an Article V convention (A5C). He added that this is
consistent with COS polling nationwide. But wait!
How can a short robocall made up of a few superficial questions
measure real opinion on a complicated, unknown issue like an
Article V convention? Polls paid for by clients with agendas and published as NEWS
yield the results the client wants. Outcomes can be manipulated
by the questions asked.
HERE is the script for the Robopoll conducted in Iowa; only questions #8 through #11
addressed an A5C. And here are the same questions and responses from MICHIGAN a month
later (emphasis added):
✓ What best describes your opinion of whether Michigan should join other states in calling
for a convention to propose constitutional amendments that limit federal power? [45%
✓ What best describes your opinion of a constitutional amendment to limit federal
spending? [54% favor/23% oppose]
✓ What best describes your opinion of placing term limits on members of Congress and/or
federal judges? [71% favor/19% oppose]
✓ What best describes your opinion of Michigan calling for a convention of states to propose
constitutional amendments that limit federal spending, limit federal power, and establish
term limits for members of Congress and/or federal judges? [64% favor/22% oppose]
But these are trick questions! Respondents’ attention is focused on the subject of the proposed
amendments, while ignoring the real danger—triggering an Article V convention where
Delegates can’t be controlled, and our Constitution is up for grabs. Obviously, what was
measured by this survey was the popularity of various constitutional amendments—not support
for a convention!
Would COS’s poll results have flipped if the risks of an A5C had been included in the survey?
Clearly the poll, as is, is a thinly veiled attempt to influence public policy and sway legislators’
votes, rather than an honest attempt to measure where voters stand on this complex and