After an exhaustive study of fifteen state constitutional conventions held during the 1960s and 70s, we have concluded that the three major Article V "convention of the states" efforts likely have the following price tags:
Convention of States = $52.5 to $191.2 million
BBA Task Force = $52.5 million
Compact for America = $791,500
Yes, that's right. The estimated cost of a Compact for America-style Article V convention is one-fiftieth of the estimated cost of a legacy topic-limited convention.
Splitting the difference on the Convention of States' estimate, and here's what that breakdown looks like in graphic form:
More than fifty Compact for America-style "Article V 2.0" conventions
separately proposing more than fifty different amendments could be organized for less than the cost of a single legacy-approach Article V convention.
We also discovered that the greatest risk of organizing a "convention of states" is not so much a runaway convention, but rather a "do nothing" convention!
State constitutional conventions of the 1960s and 70s were most successful when they were targeted to specific reforms.
State constitutional conventions with broad or wide-open agendas often achieved little or nothing at significant taxpayer expense.
The bottom line is that our research shows that the Compact for America approach to organizing an Article V convention promises the biggest bang for the taxpayer buck - precisely because it is limited to a 24 hour up-or-down vote on proposing a specific federal Balanced Budget Amendment.