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Ratify Article the First to Return the Government to We the People

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  At the time, Republican Representative Edgar Crumpacker of Indiana, who chaired the House Committee on the Census argued against freezing the number of House seats:

  "Members are" supposed to reflect the opinion and to stand for the wishes of their constituents. If we make the ratio [of persons per Representative] too large the idea of representation becomes attenuated and less definite. The personal interest of the voter in his representative becomes less important to him, and we may lose something of the vital strength of our representative form of government."

  Indeed, he was correct. With a population of over 313 million only 435 people is far too few, leaving one representative per 721,609 people. To contrast, Great Briton enjoys one representative per 96,523 citizens in their lower house alone. The tiny state of New Hampshire, having the largest lower chamber of any state at 200 members, achieves one representative per approximately 3000 people.

  Asking for one representative per 50,000 citizens and increasing the size of the House of Representatives to over 6,100 members is not unreasonable, especially when considering that there are already over 15,000 people running Congress, and we only elected a small fraction of them.

 Beneficial Effects

  Despite the large number and the addition of members, gridlock would ease, not escalate. The reason why the current House stagnates as it does is because a few individuals have enormous power through financial backing, the backing of their party, and the power of their personality. One voice among 6,100 is much less powerful than one in 435.

  With Article the First in place, our representatives would actually represent us. Imagine having the cell phone number of your representative. Knowing them from the neighborhood, having gone to school together. They would not be beholden to a faceless special interest and they would need not fear reprisals from such. They would only have a duty to their neighbors who elected them. Special interest groups and lobbyists would not be able to afford buy off enough congress members to make a difference.

  Gerrymandering congressional districts would be a thing of the past. It would be impossible to draw a legislative district that stretches hundreds of miles negate the voting power of one block or another as physical size of districts would become too small.

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Up until 1911, there were twenty third parties in the United States that, at given times, controlled over five percent of the House. With 6,100 representatives, third party candidates would be viable because constituencies would have a choice between more than two candidates including a third party that better represents them, therefore breaking the two-party system and forcing the compromise among them. Along those lines, it would be increasingly difficult for a fraction of a party to hold the rest of the party at ransom, rather they could break off into their own, more ideologically pure, party.

  As it stands today, each congress member has 27 assistants. The overwhelming majority of our law makers are not elected. This requires a lot of money, as do elections where over 700,000 people are voting. With more members of congress actually doing the work, there would be less of a need for staff.

  With a smaller constituency, the cost of an election would drop by 70 percent or more. The need for national or outside groups to fund elections decreases exponentially. Congressmen and women would be able to fund their campaign from donors in their own districts alone. There would still be money in politics, but the "big spenders" are unlikely to spend more than twice as much on elections than they currently are, and at that price, they could not afford to own enough members of congress to have significant influence.

 America Needs More Representation and Less Politicians

  Increasing the size of the House of Representatives is the one thing that allows all other things to happen; less partisanship, a stronger Constitution, a Congress that is in check by those who represented them, and overall, an America where freedom is self-determined by people, not by politicians.

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  Ratifying Article the First is only one method of increasing our representation to the point where the federal government will function. Perhaps 6,100 reps, as the amendment prescribes, is too many. Maybe another number, like 721, a little under one representative per 100,000 citizens, would be a better start. Congress has the power to increase the number of representatives at any time. However, this is unlikely to happen because it definitely means each individual member losing power and influence.

  At this time, however, Article the First has already been ratified by eleven states, (some argue that Connecticut did ratify it, making it technically the law of the land), leaving 27 more to go.

  Do something and say something by writing to your Representative and asking them to sponsor legislation to raise representation. Write to your state representative(s) and state senator and ask for the ratification of Article the First to be considered for ratification (that is, if your state hasn't already ratified it), or write to the Archivist and ask him to comment on whether or not Article the First realty is a ratified amendment to the Constitution.

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Founder of "The Rev. Rob Times," ( Rev. Robert A. Vinciguerra has been a longtime student of journalism. From Phoenix, Arizona.

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I like this a lot!I've been thinking about this "R... by Scott Baker on Saturday, Sep 21, 2013 at 4:59:13 AM
And excellent point.Meanwhile, we should ask them ... by Jill Herendeen on Saturday, Sep 21, 2013 at 7:43:21 AM