Skip to comments.Federalist #60, on "rendering it impracticable to the citizens at large to partake in the choice"
Posted on 04/12/2016 2:49:54 PM PDT by snarkpup
... But it is alledged that it might be employed in such a manner as to promote the election of some favourite class of men in exclusion of others; by confining the places of election to particular districts, and rendering it impracticable to the citizens at large to partake in the choice. Of all chimerical suppositions, this seems to be the most chimerical. On the one hand no rational calculation of probabilities would lead us to imagine, that the disposition, which a conduct so violent and extraordinary would imply, could ever find its way into the national councils; and on the other, it may be concluded with certainty, that if so improper a spirit should ever gain admittance into them, it would display itself in a form altogether different and far more decisive.
The improbability the attempt may be satisfactorily inferred from this single reflection, that it could never be made without causing an immediate revolt of the great body of the people,- headed and directed by the state governments. It is not difficult to conceive that this characteristic right of freedom may, in certain turbulent and factious seasons, be violated in respect to a particular class of citizens by a victorious and overbearing majority; but that so fundamental a privilege, in a country so situated and so enlightened, should be invaded to the prejudice of the great mass of the people, by the deliberate policy of the government; without occasioning popular revolution, is altogether inconceivable and incredible.
(Excerpt) Read more at consource.org ...
As can be seen from the above excerpt, the Framers thought it utterly inconceivable that the dominant powers would "render it impracticable to the citizens at large to partake in the choice" by "confining the places of election to particular districts." It was understood that if they tried to pull such a stunt, they would be dealt with harshly by the great body of the people.
And we’re about to prove that point,
Hamilton never met the late Al Davis.. Just Win, Baby!!
Colorado has traditionally had this setup.
The skullduggery doesn’t come in that it gyped Trump this time around, but that it is SYSTEMATICALLY set up to do this *every single time*. It’s only this time that it got any attention because the nomination is still contested at this point.
Even when the presidential election should devolve onto the House of Representatives, the congressmen selecting the President, would themselves have been elected by the people, whose interests they were pledged to serve.
The Party chiefs serve their own ends.
Oh, bull. You DID have to go to the county conventions. Boo-hoo. That’s the way it was done in most states until recently. Guess what? You know why counties are called COUNTies? Because that’s where they COUNTed voters in the days of the founding fathers. OK, Counties had less area than they do in Colorado, but then again, you had to ride by horse.
UPDATE: OK, that turned out to be a linguistic coincidence. You were expected to travel to your county seat, but the term originates as the “seat” of the rank of nobleman known as a “Count.”
“It is not difficult to conceive that this characteristic right of freedom may, in certain turbulent and factious seasons, be violated in respect to a particular class of citizens by a victorious and overbearing majority; but that so fundamental a privilege, in a country so situated and so enlightened, should be invaded to the prejudice of the great mass of the people...”
I think that you have Madison turned 180 degrees around. Yes - he did say that there was the risk of caucuses being placed in difficult out-of-the way places. But - that would be a rarity, would be found out and overthrown, and not make it onto the national scene. With Colorado there were local caucuses all over the state. I suppose that one could say that traveling the 300 miles to Colorado Springs would be difficult though. But obviously lots of people did it.
What Madison is warning against is the prejudice of a great mass of people. He was warning us of a Democracy. That is no doubt why Franklin warned the lady “A Republic, if you can keep it.”
Here in Washington state my precinct caucus was abut 1.5 miles from my house. I went to the district caucus which was about 6 miles from my house.
I’m going to the state convention as a delegate - about 300 miles.
There is a bit of an apples to oranges comparison here. Hamilton was talking about the election to office, not primaries. Party primaries are actually a fairly recent change. I don’t have the exact date, but the parties used to select their candidates only via caucuses and conventions without any primary election as many states have today. Political parties are private organizations and can make their own rules as they see fit.
What we have been seeing in the Republican Party is gross manipulation and betrayal of their members. The party members are rebelling. What they are doing may or may not be right, but it is neither illegal nor in violation of the constitution or any law.
Part of the upset is because most voters never participate in primaries and there are a lot of new people participating this year, and they do not know the rules.
It may well be time for the Republican party to go the way of the Whigs, and be replaced by a new party. But let’s not add to the confusion and be diverted by immaterial issues.
“...by confining the places of election to particular districts, and rendering it impracticable to the citizens at large to partake in the choice. Of all chimerical suppositions, this seems to be the most chimerical.”
Definition of chimerical:
1: existing only as the product of unchecked imagination, fantastically visionary or improbable
2: given to fantastic schemes
The first primary was in Oregon in 1910. Pushed by the Progressive Party.
From the Colorado elections site:
“The political parties in Colorado hold neighborhood-level gatherings, known as precinct meetings, to start the party’s candidate nomination process. The meetings typically take place at local schools, churches and community centers. Democrats will host 3,010 precinct meetings, while Republican will gather at 2,995 precinct locations.”
The website where you can punch in your address and locate your local precinct didn’t work for me - one of them said “The Caucus has already been held”, but easy enough to find one.
At 104,185 sq. miles for Colorado in size, that is one precinct for every 34 square miles. Or ~6 miles travel distance. The local precincts is where they elect the folks to go to county, and then to state. So whether or not you could make it the 311 miles to state, you could vote for your representative to state.
So no, that is not the kind of fantastic system Madison was warning us about.
Well, that made sense before the War Between the States, and the 17 amendment.
It’s stunning that Freepers, ANY Freepers, would defend the tyranny that we’ve had to endure for years in CO.
And yet here you are being attacked for merely pointing out tyranny.
Is it just me, or is it only Cruzers who seem OK with tyranny?
So you didn’t have a conversation with the guy sitting at the table that you voted for to see what he was about before voting for him? While not a legal binding vote for a delegate, you would think you would have an idea on how he leans and would represent you well.
And it may all be for nothing anyway, as the Cruz delegates are “soft” delegates, and may vote for Trump anyway depending on circumstances. Like if Trump gets 50%+1 at the national convention. Then the Colorado delegates can say “We voted for the winner - go Trump”. Which is what I will be doing in that scenario.
Not even Democrats seem OK with this tyranny. I understand that their leadership is also responding to torches and pitchforks on their side of the aisle and getting on board with the real-primary movement. And a Democrat friend, speaking about their caucuses four years ago, told me that the first level of delegates out their caucuses tend to be the fringe people.
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