Skip to comments.A Senate of the States – The 17th Amendment Part III
Posted on 01/04/2018 2:10:11 AM PST by Jacquerie
Subtitle: Progressives Blow Up the Framers Constitution.
Despite the lessons of history, Progressives promote ever more democracy, which, unless tempered and limited, is like turning ones household over to the majority rule of teenagers. Is this household arrangement fair? Sure. It is also idiocy which no parent would consider. A senate of the states, and not the parchment barriers of the Constitution stood athwart democratic rule by social justice emotions little different from that of the typical teenager.
What was the 17th Amendment (17A) supposed to do?
The post-17A senate was to respond to the peoples needs, and free the senate from corruption and wealthy interests. Progressives built their movement on the promise of cleaner government less subject to corporate influence and bribery, and a more responsive and efficient senate that dealt effectively with the issues of greatest concern to the people.1
Did the 17A do what is was supposed to do?
Direct election did not diminish the role of money.
However, it incentivized senators to represent their new constituents and cooperate with initiatives from the House of Representatives (house).2 Once senators represented the people, a body already represented in the house, there was greater congruence between voters and their representatives in congress, with corresponding less opportunity for input from the states. For reps in the house, the 17A diminished opposition to their constituencies, increased their power, and made their votes more important to progressive special interests.3
What hath the 17A wrought?
No one today can formulate counterfactual certainties regarding the health of free government these past 104 years, had the nation not lost its head in Progressive vapors, had the politically erotic scent of democracy repulsed, rather than enticed. But, that doesnt mean we cannot speculate.
The 17th Amendment:
Encouraged subsequent explosive growth of a once-federal, now national, government.
(Excerpt) Read more at articlevblog.com ...
What happened here...as the turn of the century occurred is a couple of news magazines started to appear that brought a centralized news function to the general public. You could subscribe and get a view of things that went beyond your local area, your city, and your state.
So at some point, the news magazines focused on the corrupt nature that states were using to get individuals through the state legislative process and to the point of US Senator. Deals were made. Some corruption charges were made up in various states, and this got national publicity compliments of the news magazines. Prior to this period, there was simply no way that you got a national view of politics or national corruption.
So the agenda pushed forward, why not dump the legislative process out of this and just make people run in the state with regular voters selecting them. This was a GOP theme at the time...to clean up state politics.
The Amendment was proposed in 1912, and stepped through the process, and was effective by the summer of 1914.
Amusingly enough today, people feel the current system is corrupted and want to reverse it and return to the legislative process that existed prior to 1914. My guess is that it’d take less than ten years for people to admit that changing back to the old way simply re-created the whole corruption factor.
Perhaps the better method here is to limit each state to one single Senator, take away most legislative power, serve only to approve cabinet officers, impeachment processes, and approve Supreme Court members.
I addressed the Progressives over-hyped corruption in my two previous squibs.
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