Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Four thirty-five

About a year ago, I discovered a site called thirty-thousand.org. It was basically a site focusing on how those who considered and wrote the Constitution of the United States intended there to be a Representative for every thirty thousand citizens. One does wonder if they ever pictured the United States having three hundred million citizens, thus requiring ten thousand members in the House. But even that aside, it also pointed out the gross discrepancies between House districts, where some actually have twice the residents of others.

Flash forward to 2010. The Supreme Court just denied an appeal aiming to double or even quadruple the number of Representatives. One of the stated reasons for this original appeal was to more fairly divide the existing districts.

Unfortunately, everywhere I look I find only the same three or four brief paragraphs on this. It seems to be treated as a non-issue, when I personally feel it's anything but. The choice to have 435 Representatives -- no more, no less -- seems nothing but arbitrary to me, and though I don't deem 10,000 Representatives necessary, an expansion to make the picture of the American people the House is supposed to be less grainy seems anything but a bad idea to me. Maybe I'm missing something. I hope it's not just a dedication to a needless status quo that caused the Court to deny it.

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