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  • Increase the size of Congress?

    There's a lawsuit before SCOTUS to increase the number of House Representatives to follow the Constitution's directive to apportion representatives based on a State's population. The FedGov opposes this. What do you think?

    Here's the case:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clemons...nt_of_Commerce

    Here's a recently-filed brief objecting to increasing the size of the House:

    http://www.ballot-access.org/2010/10...itedStates.pdf
    Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

    snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

    Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

  • #2
    Re: Increase the size of Congress?

    You know, I would make a snarky comment about them still being unable to get anything worthwhile done but each time I try to write one, I end up just making myself feel bad.

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    • #3
      Re: Increase the size of Congress?

      I don't understand how increasing the number is the solution. The proportion of seats per state is based on the census, i.e. twice as many people = twice as many seats. The clause cited doesn't state a ratio of reps to people other than that proportion.
      |TG-6th|Snooggums

      Just because everyone does something does not mean that it is right to do.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Increase the size of Congress?

        I'm all in favor if it gets DC its proper number of representatives per population. Senators too, for that matter, if at all possible.
        I can ADS using more than a 2x without significant stutter! This was a good patch.

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        • #5
          Re: Increase the size of Congress?

          Does Puerto Rico get Representatives and Senators? If DC wants them, it can become a State.

          As to proportion of citizens to Representatives, how about 1-to-1? Make every citizen a Representative, and lobbyists would have to lobby all of us. There's be no more primaries for the House. Allow us to hire proxies, who would serve the same function as Congressional "staff" do now, writing bills and telling Representatives how to vote on them, so they don't have to read them.

          One objection I see to a larger House is that the Capitol needs to be redesigned. Okay. Put the House in an unheated warehouse in North Dakota. Of course, that won't work for those who favor an activist government that micromanages our lives.
          Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

          snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

          Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Increase the size of Congress?

            Of course the fedgov is against this. The people who fund their election runs will have less money to spend per candidate if there are more candidates. I'm sure if you did a private poll, most of them would be for less seats so they had to fight less for PAC money...

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Increase the size of Congress?

              Originally posted by snooggums View Post
              I don't understand how increasing the number is the solution. The proportion of seats per state is based on the census, i.e. twice as many people = twice as many seats. The clause cited doesn't state a ratio of reps to people other than that proportion.
              The general argument can more or less be referred to as a King Solomon problem. Though, to be honest, I think that cutting the contested objects into fractional portions IS a perfectly viable solution in this case.

              Speaking hyperbolically, if we had one state that held just under 95% of the country's population but the other 49 states still existed, State 'X' would require 413 out of 435 seats to get its "share" of the vote...but the other 49 states still get at least one seat each, of which there is only the remaining 22... So do the other 49 have to share seats? Or do they start taking away from 'X'? This is sort of where the argument in the real world comes from.

              As such, since I don't know and don't care to find out on my own, I'm going to make a bold guess that the numbers mean Mississippi probably has enough population to "earn" another seat but there aren't any to give away.

              *EDIT* In fact, I lied. I still checked to see. That's definitely the challenge Mississippi (or at least, this "Clemons"--I'm going to guess they're probably a would-be candidate or something) is making since if you look at the population estimates of 2009, Mississippi is teetering on the edge of having 5 seats rather than 4. Basically, the charge is either give them another seat from elsewhere, be forced to reallocate several states' seats to "balance" the equation, or add more seats in general. Out of the three options (well four, SCOTUS can just dismiss them), the third is, miraculously, the least politically dangerous. [/roll eyes]
              Last edited by Flarfignuggen; 11-23-2010, 05:23 PM.

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              • #8
                Re: Increase the size of Congress?

                The case specifically cites one person one vote. A) This doesn't apply to representatives, just general election. B) Increasing the number of representatives won't help either, if anything it could only damage the current system by deadlocking it more. I'm with Snoogums on this one. I see no legal ground or logical ground for this case to win.

                Also DC can't voluntarily choose to become a state, it would be nice but it can't, it's our capital and no one there gets a honest vote and is treated as non citizens. If anything I'd support adding representatives for DC.
                Puerto Rico on the other hand can go screw itself, they've chosen to be US protectorates and not a 51st state (having the option open to them every election), so no they don't need any representatives.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Increase the size of Congress?

                  Deadlock (gridlock?) is only bad if you love an activist government. If you prefer a minimalist government, then the promise of more gridlock can only be a good thing.
                  Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

                  snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

                  Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Increase the size of Congress?

                    Originally posted by Flarfignuggen View Post
                    That's definitely the challenge Mississippi (or at least, this "Clemons"--I'm going to guess they're probably a would-be candidate or something) is making since if you look at the population estimates of 2009, Mississippi is teetering on the edge of having 5 seats rather than 4.
                    Some state will always be 'teetering' on the edge, and justifying a more granular system can be done until you get down to a single vote per voter if the argument is that someone who is 'close' is always 'close enough'.
                    |TG-6th|Snooggums

                    Just because everyone does something does not mean that it is right to do.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Increase the size of Congress?

                      Originally posted by ScratchMonkey View Post
                      Deadlock (gridlock?) is only bad if you love an activist government. If you prefer a minimalist government, then the promise of more gridlock can only be a good thing.
                      Considering their record, I would rather them do their job and vote on the bills that reach them rather than just shuffling them around and only dealing with the top 10%. I don't know about you but any other job where you don't do your work you get fired. Why isn't that the case with congress?

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                      • #12
                        Re: Increase the size of Congress?

                        Originally posted by Sirusblk View Post
                        Considering their record, I would rather them do their job and vote on the bills that reach them rather than just shuffling them around and only dealing with the top 10%. I don't know about you but any other job where you don't do your work you get fired. Why isn't that the case with congress?
                        I completely agree with this comment. If there position was treated like a REAL job then they would have been fired long ago but then we would be going through members very quickly and then nothing would get done. I believe it was the govenor of Louisana who stated that they should only be paid as if their job is a part time job and be required to get a second job and actually work at making a paycheck. Too many people work 60+ hrs a week and make just fractions of their yearly salary and don't get a decent pension. I would hate to increase the number of members that will do very little work and give them our tax money.
                        FORMER 22ND RRR/FORMER 1ST JTOC/ ALWAYS A TACTICALGAMER


                        Spartan 4

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                        • #13
                          Re: Increase the size of Congress?

                          If at least half of their job was repealing law, I might agree with you. But their job is to take from one and give to another. That's not like any private job, where you have to provide something or the customers buy from someone else.

                          But you have identified one important feature of the private sector: Fail and you go out of business. Fail in the public sector and you get more funding. And that includes "private" sector entities that co-opt the public sector to protect them from failing. Once that happens, they're not private anymore. And that includes individuals along with corporations.
                          Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

                          snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

                          Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Increase the size of Congress?

                            I think you're twisting my words. The public sector doesn't necessarily get more funding if it fails. I think you have a negative view of government that affects your view in politics. Legislation often times is simply cleaning house, updating terminology, refining points of the law, etc. Half of their job doesn't need to be repealing laws, but deadlocks don't help anyone. We'd turn into a completely reactionary government only acting on bad decisions such as legislation that took away our basic rights in the wake of 9/11. I'd rather have a proactive government that actually deals with issues like health care reform properly, as well as the budget, going to war, etc.

                            The public sector has more disadvantages than advantages, for instance:
                            -Audited every year (fun times)
                            -Publically accountable for all actions unlike businesses that commit fraud day in and day out.
                            -Cannot drive for a for profit model and must instead payout like nonprofit organization.
                            -Policies are dictated by the 'people' instead of the experts who are doing the job.
                            -It's a thankless job. No one appreciates all the services that people take for granted. But they're quick to blame problems on you and even invent some in the process.

                            The private sector however can fail, hide it (since they're not publically held accountable), and still come out ahead such as how the banks acted leading up to their collapse.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Increase the size of Congress?

                              Originally posted by Sirusblk View Post
                              -Audited every year (fun times)
                              -Publically accountable for all actions unlike businesses that commit fraud day in and day out.
                              -Cannot drive for a for profit model and must instead payout like nonprofit organization.
                              -Policies are dictated by the 'people' instead of the experts who are doing the job.
                              -It's a thankless job. No one appreciates all the services that people take for granted. But they're quick to blame problems on you and even invent some in the process.
                              Sounds like a publicly-traded corporation to me (except for the non-profit part).

                              The private sector however can fail, hide it (since they're not publically held accountable), and still come out ahead such as how the banks acted leading up to their collapse.
                              Banks, being heavily regulated, are under a similar degree of scrutiny as a pure government organization. The bigger ones, like large government bureaucracies, were not allowed to fail, so their assets didn't get released to go to more successful firms (who you don't hear about).
                              Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

                              snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

                              Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

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