The 2024 Mcnickle Lecture on Integrity in Government

Roosevelt House is honored to present the 2024 McNickle Lecture on Integrity in Government featuring former senator Russ Feingold on his new book, The Constitution in Jeopardy: An Unprecedented Effort to Rewrite Our Fundamental Law and What We Can Do About It, co-authored with legal scholar Peter Prindiville.

In this urgent analysis, Senator Feingold carefully examines what he sees as a “hushed” effort on the part of conservative legislatures to fundamentally alter the U.S. Constitution—offering a warning as well as a way forward.

Over the last two decades, writes Feingold, a fringe plan to call a convention under the Constitution’s amendment mechanism has inched through statehouses. The Constitution in Jeopardy distills extensive legal and historical research and considers the grave risks inherent in such an effort. Should this convention come to pass, Feingold warns, delegates would exercise nearly unlimited authority to draft changes to our fundamental law—from voting and free speech rights to regulatory and foreign policy powers. Such a watershed moment, says Feingold, would present great danger—and, for some, great power.

In an era defined by faction and rejection of long-held norms, The Constitution in Jeopardy takes aim at the nature of constitutional change—and asks urgent questions about what American democracy is, and should be.

Hon. Russ Feingold served nearly two decades in the United States Senate, sitting on the Senate Judiciary Committee and chairing its Sub-committee on the Constitution. He is now president of the American Constitution Society and an affiliated scholar of the Stanford Constitutional Law Center. He is a recipient of the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award and the bestselling author of While America Sleeps: A Wake-up Call for the Post-9/11 Era.

The McNickle Lecture was founded and funded by Chris McNickle, a Roosevelt House Advisory Board member and author whose books include The Power of the Mayor: David Dinkins 1990-1993 and Bloomberg: A Billionaire’s Ambition.

Senator Russ Feingold — The Constitution in Jeopardy: An Unprecedented Effort to Rewrite Our Fundamental Law and What We Can Do About It | Posted on April 29th, 2024 | Book Discussions, Public Programs