If the 14th Amendment demands adherence to one-man-one-vote, the electoral college and US Senate operate in clear violation. Why didn’t scotus demand US Senate membership according to population? Because, unlike amending the constitutions of fifty defenseless states, the US Congress has the power to visit unremitting hell on a Supreme Court that pulled such a stunt.
From the decision, “The superficial resemblance between one of the Alabama apportionment plans and the legislative representation scheme of the Federal Congress affords no proper basis for sustaining that plan since the historical circumstances which gave rise to the congressional system of representation, arising out of compromise among sovereign States, are unique and without relevance to the allocation of seats in state legislatures.”
In other words, just because the 1787 US Constitution kept the democratic element in check in order to better secure liberty, it was no reason for the states to attempt the same. Social Justice via the 14th Amendment began long ago.
The results have been disastrous, in which big metropolitan areas represent distinct factions that exercise majoritarian control over all other interests across their states. Since One Man, One Vote was carved into judicial stone, we can expect the damage to continue until the states destroy themselves and their society.
The Federalist 43. From the US Constitution Article IV § 4, the federal government is charged with protecting the states:
“To guarantee to every State in the Union a republican form of government; to protect each of them against invasion; and on application of the legislature, or of the executive (when the legislature cannot be convened), against domestic violence.”
Here, in recognition that self-defense is the reason society comes together to form a governing compact in the first place, the new government was charged with defense of its member republics and people from three threats. The first threat is from non-republican government; only republican forms can secure liberty. Republican forms of government are characterized by the rule of law, popular consent, and no monarchy or aristocracy. Madison wrote that “as long as the existing republican forms are continued by the states, they are guaranteed by the federal Constitution.” The only restriction is that they shall not exchange republican for anti-republican Constitutions.
Reynolds obliterated the societal right of the people to design their particular, yet republican, state governments.
For the majority, Chief Justice Earl Warren wrote, “A prime reason for bicameralism, modernly considered, is to insure mature and deliberate consideration of, and to prevent precipitate action on, proposed legislative measures. Simply because the controlling criterion for apportioning representation is required to be the same in both houses does not mean that there will be no differences in the composition and complexion of the two bodies.” Warren substituted his theory of political science for those expressed in fifty state constitutions backed up by three hundred years of experience. This is the Utopian Left. This is tyranny.
Associate Justice Harlan dissented. The majority’s use of the 14th Amendment was in error, and the majority opinion had “the effect of placing basic aspects of state political systems under the pervasive overlordship of the federal judiciary.” Had the Court paused to probe more deeply into the matter, it would have found that the Equal Protection Clause was never intended to inhibit the states in choosing any democratic method they pleased for the apportionment of their legislatures.
Justice Harlan accused the court of amending the Constitution: “Since it can, I think, be shown beyond doubt that state legislative apportionments, as such, are wholly free of constitutional limitations, save such as may be imposed by the Republican Form of Government Clause, the Court’s action now bringing them within the purview of the Fourteenth Amendment amounts to nothing less than an exercise of the amending power by this Court.” Furthermore, Justice Harlan found the plaintiffs’ complaints to be without merit. He would have thrown them out.
In the larger picture beyond Reynolds, the purpose of voting, along with the just purposes of any government have been largely forgotten. Rather than carefully consider the effect of an ever-expanding popular/democratic element, voting has devolved in the US into a right unto itself. The Left has so corrupted the nation that most people believe they have a God-given right to vote for senators and presidents. No, we are to have security in our unalienable rights and to live under laws enacted with our consent. The Left’s never ending expansion of the democratic element began with the 17th Amendment, and got a big boost from Reynolds v. Sims. Today, we see its continuance through widespread voting by non-citizens, the National Popular Vote movement, and opposition to proof of identity at polling places.
I didn’t write this blog in the hope that a future scotus would overturn Reynolds. Even if all of Mark Levin’s Liberty Amendments are ratified, the rot of one-man-one-vote may be too engrained in our national psyche to be overturned by three-fifths of the states.
The lesson of Reynolds, Roe, Obergefell and so many others is that an unchecked Leftist Supreme Court, once set free to Progress the Constitution, does enormous and perhaps irreversible damage to our nation and society. If our once free republic is to restored, the destructive Left must be denied future seats on the federal bench.
We are the many; our oppressors are the few. Be proactive. Be a Re-Founder. Join Convention of States. Join Convention of States.