A solution for Congress

Everybody hates Congress and its pork. And its sleazy politicians. And their corruption. And how out of touch they are.

Here is a remedy: increase the size of Congress. Both houses. Dramatically.

You know the pols are out of touch. They treat themselves as royalty. Most are millionaires. Most know only politics their entire careers. Their votes are bought by big money from special interests. They need that money because their campaigns are so costly.

The problem is that our members of Congress represent too many people. The solution is to enlarge the Congress.

Our founders called for one representative for 30,000 Americans. Accordingly, we added more members to our House at various times as our population grew. Congress halted that in the early 1900s. They froze the House at 435 seats. Today the members represent an average of 700,000 people. This is not very democratic. In fact, our Congress is the least democratic of all major nations. And it shows.

If we had one member for 50,000 people we would have 6,000. You may think that large number would never work. Ah, but you may be peering through lenses created by what we are accustomed to.

First, we would not have to house them in one building. We could hook them up electronically from their district. And keeping them in their district would probably be a good thing. Less power and influence would be focused in Washington.

Campaigns in districts of only 50,000 would be cheap. That alone would suck a lot of the big money out of politics. Members would not be so desperate for campaign funds. So they would be less vulnerable to pressures from big money from special interests.

Meanwhile, the special interests would find it far more difficult and costly to buy so many members.

People without money would find it easier to run for office in such small districts. We would get more average folks into Congress and fewer lifetime pols. Diverse points of view and minorities would get more representation. And the representation would be better tailored to the districts. Agricultural areas and blue collar areas, for instance, would get better representation than they do now.

Government would probably grow smaller. This is because big majorities of Americans want less government, less government spending. They would have far more influence and control over their representatives if districts had only 50,000 voters.

Enlarging the Senate to, say, 500 seats, would dethrone a lot of royalty. Senators wield so much power because they represent far more people than they should. Only two Senators from California represent 12 percent of Americaís population. Eight Senators from four states represent one-third of Americans. That is far too great a concentration of power. It is way beyond what our founders envisioned. It is way beyond what common sense calls for.

You can read more about this idea at the website Thirty-Thousand.org. I encourage you to read and think about it. There is a good chance you will see it would sensibly deal with the issues that have made our Congress about as popular as leprosy.

From Tom ... as in Morgan.††††††††††††††††††

For more columns and for Tomís radio shows and new TV shows (and to write to Tom): tomasinmorgan.com.

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