- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida said Wednesday that he is open to the idea of holding an Article V constitutional convention, but warned the move could open up the Constitution to a variety of competing interests and lead to some unwanted changes.

Mr. Rubio, a 2016 GOP presidential candidate, said while campaigning in New Hampshire that the nation should have a convention with the power to rewrite parts of the founding document if that is what citizens want.

“Just make sure that we know how it is going to turn out because if you open up the Constitution, you are also opening it up to people that want to reexamine the First Amendment, people who that want to reexamine the Second Amendment, people that want to reexamine some other fundamental protects that are built into the constitution,” the 44-year-old said.

“But ultimately there is a provision that exists for citizens to amend their Constitution and reexamine it, and if our citizens want to do that, I will be supportive of it,” he said. “But just be aware that the same groups that are trying to pass legislation that violates the Constitution are the same groups of people that are going to try to change that Constitution, and we are going to fight them at that convention.”

Mr. Rubio is polling third in national polls and fourth in New Hampshire, home to the first-in-the-nation primary.

His campaign recently announced that it had pulled in $6 million over the last three months, leaving him with $11 million cash on hand. The third-quarter haul marked a dip from the second fundraising quarter, where he pulled in more than $12 million.

Speaking at a town hall meeting in Derry, New Hampshire, Mr. Rubio said that he doesn’t think the nation needs the Department of Education, advocated raising the retirement age for Social Security and argued that modernizing and rebuilding the nation’s military will help save taxpayer money over the long haul.

“We are economically impacted by global instability,” Mr. Rubio said. “One of the things that helps ensure global stability is a strong U.S. military. It actually prevents war, and every time we have cut defense spending in this country significantly, we have had to come back later and make up for it and it costs a lot more money.”

He also blamed leaders of both parties for convincing a majority of Americans that they can no longer achieve the “American dream.”

Mr. Rubio said Democrat and Republican leaders have missed the opportunity to adapt to the changing world.

“In the modern history of this country, never has there been a time when the political class is more out of touch than it is today,” he said. “I wish I could say it is just one political party, but it is in both. Leaders in both parties that are both out of touch and outdated.”

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