Monday, May 14, 2012

Why we need to repeal the 17th Amendment

"[Last week's] forced retirement of Senator Richard Lugar of 'Indiana' should prove a bracing lesson in the use of the pike for didactic purposes. It's also one of the best arguments for the repeal of the 17th amendment in a long time.

As I've said before, senators no longer represent their states to Washington, they represent Leviathan to the states, handing out either goodies or punishments as their whim and the political winds dictate. Their primary allegiance is not to the voters back 'home' but to their cloakroom colleagues (hence the 'bipartisanship' fetish that is particularly virulent in the Senate) on Capitol Hill, and to the Beltway parasites who feed off them.

Indeed, Lugar didn't even live in Indiana.

According to this story, he stayed in a hotel in Indianapolis, at taxpayer expense, whenever he deigned to visit. ... In the name of 'democracy,' the 'progressive'-era amendment fundamentally upset the balance of state-fed power that had been built into the Constitution, tipping it inexorably in favor of Washington.

Unmoored from state or region for a minimum of six years -- and more likely, twelve or 18 -- the senators now form a club without a purpose except for their own reelections.

Far from enhancing democracy, the very nature of the office now mocks it." --columnist Michael Walsh

Who is your senator and do they represent you?

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