Thursday, October 8, 2009

Most Americans don’t realize that the Constitution originally called for the State Legislatures to appoint the Senate in the Federal Government. If fact it operated this way for well over 100 years. A discussion on why it changed would require a longer treatment then this post would allow, however consider what John Dickinson, a signer of the Constitution, had to say about the dangers of having the Senate elected by popular vote:

If the state government were excluded from all agency in the national one, and
all power drawn from the people at large, the consequence would be that the
national government would move in the same direction as the state governments
now do, and would run into all the same mischief’s. The reform would only
unite the thirteen small streams into one great current, pursuing the same
course without any opposition whatever.

The 17th Amendment of the US Constitution passed in 1913 has dramatically disrupted the balance of power. Senators since this date have been elected by the popular vote of the people. Mr. Dickinson’s preceding quote has proven to be prophetic as we have witnessed the rapid increase in the size of the Federal Government and its reach into the affairs of the States. The result has been the erosion of one of the most important separations of powers created by the Constitution. Today as a result, “We The People” have less ability to check the unconstitutional actions which are proposed and passed by the Federal Government.

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