Pack the House: How to Fix the Legislative Branch

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A growing chorus of left-leaning pundits have begun to call for the abolition of the Senate. It defies the principles of representative democracy by giving some people more power than others based on arbitrary geography; it systematically weakens the political power of minorities; the Senate’s whole origin is part of a plot to protect slavery.

These are all interesting arguments, but they run up against two serious problems: first, any plan to change the Senate will inevitably, as a basic rule of math, involve about half of the states or more losing power, which means those states’ Senators are unlikely to vote for it. Second, Article V of the U.S. Constitution spells out that while normal amendments can be passed with approval from three quarters of the states, altering the composition of the Senate requires unanimous consent of every state. In other words, Senatorial reform will never happen, regardless of its merits.

Truth - Senate - Things - Critics - Virtue

But the truth is, while the Senate may be all those things its critics say, it has the virtue of being honest about it: of course the Senate is unrepresentative and privileges certain voters more! That’s why it exists! It may be bad, but it’s an honest, plainspoken kind of bad.

The House of Representatives is a different story.

Constitutional - Convention - George - Washington - Speech

During the Constitutional Convention in 1787, George Washington only made one speech from the floor on what should be included in the new Constitution. After everything had been agreed upon and the delegates were ready to take the final vote, Washington stood up and advanced one last minute request, the first such request he had offered in weeks of deliberation: instead of having one representative per 40,000 people, Washington asked the convention to lower the ratio to one per 30,000. This issue, that representatives should have small constituencies with which they could be...
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