Is it too much to ask the NYT coverage of the Repeal Amendment–a constitutional amendment that would allow 2/3 of the state legislatures to repeal any federal law or regulation–to get the basic facts right. 

You would expect a college journalism student to get the main point wrong but not the NYT.  Times reporter Kate Zernike writes:

Like any constitutional amendment, it faces enormous hurdles: it must be approved by both chambers of Congress ? requiring them to agree, in this case, to check their own power ? and then by three-quarters of, or 38, state legislatures.

Totally false.  When the Founders wrote Article V of the Constitution, they foresaw just this situation.  They knew that Congress would never propose an amendment that
limited its power. Thus the Founders provided a way that the state legislatures could propose amendments independent of Congress. 

…or on Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments…

The Repeal Amendment aims at using this method of proposing the amendment and then working to get three-fourths (38) states to ratify the amendment.

Of course it is the reporter’s job to find a critic of the amendment.  Ms. Zernike asked Sanford V. Levinson, a professor of constitutional law at the University of Texas, his opinion.  He calls it “a really terrible idea” because:

 it would give the same weight to small states as it would to large ones, allowing those with a relatively small proportion of the national population to have outsize influence.

Ms. Zernike and especially Professor Levinson should be ashamed of themselves for not recognizing that this is the
current situation in the US Senate.   The senators from the sparsely populated states–Wyoming, North Dakota, Vermont, Alaska, etc.–can join together to block or defeat legislation they don’t like. This rarely happens and it is not a significant issue related to the Repeal Amendment.

Whether this is the usual liberal bias at the NYT, ignorance of the Constitution or just slipshod copy editing, it deserves a clarification.  I won’t hold my breath.

For more information on the Repeal Amendment, see Professor Randy Barnett’s WSJ op-ed here.