Last week’s Simulated Article V Convention wrapped up Friday having passed six constitutional amendments pertaining to term limits, fiscal restraints, and federal jurisdiction. The historic event, hosted by Convention of States Foundation, laid important groundwork for an actual Article V convention, which organizers are hard at work in every U.S. state to call. To date, 19 of the 34 states needed have passed Article V resolutions.

Friday’s proceedings are available free to watch here.

Following the event, Convention of States Foundation President Mark Meckler, co-founder Michael Farris, and Senior Advisor Rick Santorum joined constitutional attorney Rita Peters to unpack the six passed amendments. Together, they agreed that while the amendments themselves would deal a serious blow to federal overreach and corruption, simply calling the convention would be enough to radically rebalance our lopsided system of governance.

They predicted that, as America nears its first-ever actual convention, Washington will be increasingly incentivized to “behave itself,” knowing that any brazen act of overreach might be the final straw that pushes the states over the edge. Once the convention is called, Santorum pointed out, the states will have reestablished themselves as a force to be reckoned with.

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Prior to the ratification of the 17th Amendment, which established the direct election of U.S. senators, in 1913, the state legislatures were responsible for appointing lawmakers to Congress’s upper house. Not only did this keep their senators accountable to the states, but it also maintained a healthy system of federalism. The states’ ascendancy over the federal government in this regard served as a check and balance between national and state power. By signing away that power, state governments condemned themselves to eventually being disregarded by D.C. Fortunately, with a convention, the states can restore the Founders’ original vision, thereby reclaiming accountability over rogue federal politicians.

“The Constitution was written by folks like you,” Santorum reminded the over 100 simulation commissioners, most of whom were state legislators. “They wanted you folks, the state legislators, the states, to be at the top of the food chain…. Once you have a convention, then you show Washington that you are now at the top of the food chain.”

Santorum argued that even if the first Article V convention accomplished nothing else, this alone would be enough to shake D.C. to its core. Federal politicians and bureaucrats would see (1) that the states were fed up enough to call a convention and (2) that they almost certainly would call more conventions in the future. Santorum has long posited that the first convention will be only the first of many.

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Michael Farris added that any passed amendment, even before it was ratified, would be enough to force Washington to seriously consider mending its ways. For example, he cited the simulation’s passed countermand amendment, which would enable a simple majority of state legislatures to abrogate federal rules and regulations. While Farris, Santorum, and Meckler all agreed this amendment might be too “bold” to secure three-fourths ratification in the states, Farris pointed out that it would incentivize Congress—threatened with the possibility of losing power to such a sweeping affirmation of states’ rights—to behave more responsibly.

Overall, one of many outstanding lessons from the simulation was that the Article V process works and in and of itself is enough to pump the brakes on our runaway federal government. Meckler said the experience “gave me a lot of faith in the process.” Farris agreed he was “very, very, impressed.”

“You’re now on their radar screen,” Santorum buoyed legislators, describing the power they will have once the first-ever convention is called. “They got to account for you.”

“I guarantee you,” Mark Meckler affirmed, “Washington, DC, broadly speaking, is watching us. To see this many states that angry—that would like to see [the Fed’s] power curtailed that dramatically—I think it has an impact on them.”

Jakob Fay is a staff writer for the Convention of States Project, a project of Citizens for Self-Governance.