Note to leftists who hate Joe Manchin: The Senate is NOT supposed to be democratic

File this under "Ignorance isn't really bliss."  It is nothing more than the result of a lack of knowledge.

Predictably, the radical progressives in Congress are strenuously kvetching about the failure of their latest ultra-ridiculous attempt to raid the U.S. Treasury, known as Build Back Better or BBB.  They are blaming the structure of the Senate, having two members from every state regardless of population.  Obviously, to them, at least, the fault is with the Constitution and not their stupid proposal.

I am expecting increasing calls for making the Senate more democratic, like the House of Representatives.  But there just so happens to be this pesky scrap of parchment called the U.S. Constitution.  If you put on your green eye shade and scroll down to Article V, you'll find that the means for amending the Constitution are plainly specified.  But there's a catch.  The final clause in this single paragraph is a real humdinger: "... and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate" (emphasis added).

Why is this?  The answer is found in the name of the United States.  Our country is not a single political entity; it is, rather, a federation of sovereign states.  The Senate embodies the essence of this sovereignty, where all member states have an equal voice.  The 17th Amendment kind of, sort of tampered with this a little bit by having the senators chosen by general election rather than by the legislatures of the several states, as had been the case for the previous 126 years.  There's a move afoot to go back to the old way.  It is conceivable, at least, that should the legislatures regain their control over the Senate, then the D.C. swamp would have less influence on the body.  Instead, the various swamps of Sacramento, Albany, Jefferson City, etc. would have more influence.

Another vestige of this state sovereignty contained in the Constitution is in the choosing of the president, should the Electoral College be deadlocked, as happened in the election of 1876.  The decision goes to the proportionately democratic House of Representatives — but the specific delegation from each state has only one vote.

Other critics of the caterwauling progs have emphasized the pre-existing majority rule for votes within the Senate, and that calling such a practice "undemocratic" is foolish.  But simple extrapolation reveals that the two votes per state, regardless of population, is the real target of the effort.

It is comforting to know that the Senate represents the states and not the people, and that cannot be changed by the usual amendment process.  The radical progs are in the process of revealing that they are ignorant of not just history, economics, and arithmetic — but also what the United States really is.       

It is profoundly unfortunate that such ignorance is commonplace among the seats of power.  Should they push this issue of Senate representation far enough, a learning event will occur, and we'll at last be vaccinated from this nonsense.

Image: Third Way Think Tank via Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

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