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Extreme Make-Over: The House Edition

 

About the author: Lori Boxer is the co-owner and Director of Weight No MoreSM Diet Center, a family-owned private weight loss and diet counseling practice for over 25 years with offices in New York and New Jersey, as well as client service nationwide via Skype. There are no pills, no packaged foods, no diet drinks as ... [read 's FULL BIO]

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The Constitution of the Untied States of America, Article 1, Section 2, Paragraph 3, excerpt:

“Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective numbers.”

“The Number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty thousand.”

What many people don’t know was that there was originally 12 Articles to the Bill of Rights. The original Article 1 dealt with the size of the House of Representatives:

“ … there shall be one representative for every thirty thousand, until the number shall amount to one hundred, after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall be not less than one hundred representatives, nor less than one representative for every forty thousand persons, until the number of representatives shall amount to two hundred; after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall be not less than two hundred representatives, nor more than one representative for every fifty thousand persons.”

Unfortunately, there was an error in its language so the States never ratified it.

The number of Representatives was permanently fixed at 435 in 1929, although it increased briefly to 437 in 1959 after Alaska and Hawaii became states. The number of Representatives has not changed with population growth since 1929; although it had with each census up until 1913. “One Representative for every 50,000″ means there should be approximately 6000 Representatives today. As apportioned by the 2000 Census, each member of the House currently represents about 650,000 people. That’s watered-down representation, that’s too much power entrenched in one individual, and too little accountability and responsibility to one’s constituents.

Expanding the House membership should NOT mean spending millions or billions to expand the Capital Building, staffs, etc.; not one dime would have to be spent to expand our representation. Remember, the original intent was that our elected officials were NOT supposed to remain in Washington, being a representative was NOT supposed to be one’s career but one’s part-time service to his country while holding down a normal job or running one’s own business (“… government of the people, by the people, for the people …). They were NOT supposed to have two staffs (in their state and then in DC). As it is, they pay huge staffs to basically do their work for them. Representatives should do their work in their district offices, and be employed locally. They should live among the people they SHOULD be close to—those that voted for them, that hired them, to whom they should be accountable. With the technology that we have today there is no reason this can’t be done. They can download, read, have conference calls and vote on bills remotely and convene in Washington as infrequently as possible for perhaps true emergency or security/defense measures. And when their tenure is up, they should return to life in their states, given 6 months or a year of COBRA for their medical benefits and/or 6 months or a year of unemployment insurance, just like every other American.

The House of Representatives is supposed to be the “People’s House,” and 435 individuals CANNOT adequately represent the people. My representative does NOT represent me or my viewpoints in any way, shape or form and, therefore, I am being taxed WITHOUT representation.

It’s time to take back the House from elitists, lobbyists and special interests. Increasing the number of Representatives would go a long way in breaking the power of entrenched incumbency.

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  • ExNoZtoTheY

    If you count all of the lobbyists who toss their $$$ around for “legal” bribes…. we have 6,000 reps in DC… just too bad none of them are “for the people”

  • I didn’t know we were the “Untied States of America”! I thought we were UNITED. Spell-check will never defeat a good proof reader. 🙂

    • Bueford

      Are you sure that was a “mistake?”

  • Bruce Parker

    Great post and while I wholeheartedly agree with the concept, I would me very concerned about the timing of any radical overhaul of our Government. With the amount of control exercised by the Regime of Comrad O, This could turn to a virtual Libfest if allowed to proceed now. Personally I’m hoping the state of Texas exercises it’s rights under its constitution and voters decide to divide the state into 9 states. Each would then supposedly have 2 Senators and that could help tip the balance away from Harry Reid!…

  • I agree, however we can’t even break away from the 2 party system. People simply vote for the party rather than voting for the man for the job. If we can’t fix this how could we ever even think about getting more representation.

    What you’re saying is absolutely right though. At first I was thinking, here we go with even more government as if it’s not already large enough. Once I read on and seen where you were going it started making sense. I feel a lot of the problem is the Federal government has taken too much power away from the states and these politicians are way overpaid for LIFE……

    If this is even possible, I can’t imagine what the unemployment lines will look like. I imagine a huge portion would simply move over to welfare since, they never had a real job where they actually had to do manual labor. Maybe not all,but a great number.

    • Lori

      Wayne, it is my opinion that the Federal government hasn’t TAKEN too much power from the States. The States have GIVEN too much power to the Federal government. But, I think that’s going to change … real soon. We’re already started to see it.

      Conservatism has already begun where it SHOULD—in the trenches, in the cities and towns, in the local school boards and legislatures. There are now 30 Republican governors. And by my count, there are 27 Republican-controlled state legislatures where both chambers (upper, Senate; and lower: Assembly or House of Representatives) are Republicans. (If you want to get ‘into the weeds,’ 28 State Houses or Assemblies are Republican controlled; 31 State Senates are Republican controlled). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_state_legislatures

      I believe we’re going to see more of those states voting for ‘right to work’ and putting other more conservative, fiscally responsible measures into effect in their states, running the gamut from business to education. I also believe the Federal government is going to meet more and more resistance from these states, even if it means they disregard Executive Orders and defy to uphold any infringement on their States’ rights.

      Having said all of this, the premise of my post is the same: There are WAY too few representatives for too many constituents. That must change.

      • Well to be honest, the people have let the government have too much power.

        I agree that there is not proper representation. However if enough people stand up and speak up letting these guys know we aren’t going to take it.

        Until then nothing is going to happen, so I hope your right. The states are going to have to stand up. The people are going to have to ensure that the local authorities are working for us and plan to defend us. We the People should let them know that we stand beside not behind them as long as they are for our liberties and freedoms granted by the Constitution.