thirty-thousand.org
Taking Back Our Republic
 

This pamphlet explains the principal problems that result
from oversized congressional districts and how political power can be returned to the citizenry through representational enlargement
.


February 22, 2010
 
Addressed to the Citizens of the United States of America,
on the Following Interesting Subjects:

 

Introduction

[1] The Number of Representatives in the U.S. House — The Founding Fathers and the states that ratified the Constitution fully expected the House of Representatives to continue to grow along with the population.

[2] The Size of Congressional Districts — Largely because the number of Representatives has not increased in a century, the average population size of a congressional district is now approximately 700,000. This will double by the year 2100 based on current population projections.

[3] “Article the first” of the Bill of Rights — The intended purpose of the very first amendment proposed in the original Bill of Rights was to ultimately limit the maximum size of congressional districts in order to complement the minimum size already established by the Constitution. However, though affirmed by many states, “Article the first” was never ratified due to an inexplicable defect in its language.

[4] Large Congressional Districts and High Reelection Rates — As the electoral districts become larger, candidates must raise greater sums of money in order to market themselves to hundreds of thousands of prospective voters. Therefore, in larger districts, the incumbents’ ability to thwart challengers improves due to the simple fact that the challengers must raise an extraordinary amount of money merely to have a possibility of victory.

[5] Diminishing the Lobbyists’ Influence — In 2008, there were nearly 15,000 registered lobbyists in the United States. In that same year, these lobbyists reported spending over $3.2 billion, equivalent to more than $6 million per Congressman.

[6] Eliminating Political Party Control of Government — George Washington’s 1796 “Farewell Address” included an extensive warning about the “baneful effects” of political parties in which he observed that: “They [the parties] serve to Organize faction, to give it an artificial and extraordinary force — to put in the place of the delegated will of the Nation, the will of a party [who are] often a small but artful and enterprising minority of the Community.”

 

[7] Enlarging Representation Reduces the Size of Government — Several empirical studies show that there is a clear relationship between the population size of legislative districts and the size of government; specifically, government spending increases as the population size of electoral districts increases.

[8] Achieving True Diversity in the U.S. House of Representatives — With respect to how a representative assembly should be constituted, John Adams stated: “It should be in miniature an exact portrait of the people at large. It should think, feel, reason and act like them.”

[9] Achieving One Person, One Vote — Despite the strict compliance with one person one vote within every state, this fundamental constitutional requirement is being egregiously violated nationwide.

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[10] Citizen Legislators — It is no longer necessary, or even advantageous, to require all federal Representatives to commute weekly to a single distant location. Current technology makes available other means – which would have been unimaginable at the time of the drafting of the Constitution – for virtually assembling and voting on bills.

Conclusion: Restoring Citizen Control of our Government

 
© 2010 thirty-thousand.org
 
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