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The 17th Amendment and the 21st Century

  Messages 5-4 deleted by author 07-21-2006 08:57 AM
09:25 AM ET (US)
Hey everybody!!!
David MercerPerson was signed in when posted
05:20 PM ET (US)
I don't necessarily think so. I think it would perhaps put the gleam of "I could be Senator!" in the eye of many a state legislator, and make things at the state level much more fractuous and divided as the power game has now shifted.

And if there had been modern media back in the 19th Century, making Senators electable by popular vote wouldn't have had nearly the effect of shaking things up then as it did.

You already need the national party to win a Senate race as it is.

And the larger issue is Federal encroachment and uniformity of law nationwide. The Supremes took baby steps in undoing that with Lopez, but I think we need to go much further in that direction to avoid social disaster.
Lawrence KestenbaumPerson was signed in when posted
09:52 AM ET (US)
Back before the 17th Amendment, though, campaigns for state legislature became proxy votes for U.S. Senate. State issues were completely overshadowed by the question of who the prospective state legislator would support for the open Senate seat.

If the 17th were repealed today, the result would be takeover of state legislatures and of state legislative party caucuses by national parties and national party considerations. In other words, greater national uniformity, not less.

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