• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every person's position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!

If you could totally remake rules for electing the House and Senate....

Cameron

Politically Correct
DP Veteran
Joined
Oct 26, 2010
Messages
6,231
Reaction score
5,716
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Moderate
For the Senate, I'd get rid of the 2-per-state rule and make it more proportional -- maybe expand the Senate to 150-250 if necessary for each state to get at least one Senator. Also, I'd require ranked-choice voting in all Senate primaries (on the fence of whether to ban those altogether) and general elections so that the candidates and winners are more likely to be moderate and representative of the broadest swath of each state possible. I'd keep 6 year terms because I think the fact that Senators aren't constantly running for office and are accountable to a broader electoral base tends to make them a little more serious and open-minded.

For the House, I'd make it like a 2-year (or maybe even just 1-year) version of jury duty. Every four years, people have to fill out a survey with their general demographic info, similar to the census. Every two years, based on location, age, education, race, gender, etc., a random but representative number of people get selected and paid 200k per year to be House members. There can be some process similar to voir dire in jury selection to ensure no total crazies are selected. But no more professional politicians in the House, which becomes truly representative of the American people.
 
Some interesting ideas; proportional representation would fix a big problem, and the idea of randomly selected people would help address the issue of big money while creating some other problems. This is just for discussing the merits though, I don't think any changes can be made.
 
For the House, I'd make it like a 2-year (or maybe even just 1-year) version of jury duty.

Thought-provoking. Until this moment it hadn't occurred to me that the composition of the House could be worse than it is.
 
For the Senate, I'd get rid of the 2-per-state rule and make it more proportional -- maybe expand the Senate to 150-250 if necessary for each state to get at least one Senator. Also, I'd require ranked-choice voting in all Senate primaries (on the fence of whether to ban those altogether) and general elections so that the candidates and winners are more likely to be moderate and representative of the broadest swath of each state possible. I'd keep 6 year terms because I think the fact that Senators aren't constantly running for office and are accountable to a broader electoral base tends to make them a little more serious and open-minded.

For the House, I'd make it like a 2-year (or maybe even just 1-year) version of jury duty. Every four years, people have to fill out a survey with their general demographic info, similar to the census. Every two years, based on location, age, education, race, gender, etc., a random but representative number of people get selected and paid 200k per year to be House members. There can be some process similar to voir dire in jury selection to ensure no total crazies are selected. But no more professional politicians in the House, which becomes truly representative of the American people.
I'd stick with 2 senators per state, but I would make it so one senator is elected every 4 years (between elections for governor), rather than every 6 years, while the other senator is appointed by the sitting governor of the state upon taking office to represent the state's interests in Washington DC.

I would also increase the term for congressmen/women to 4 years, so they actually work instead of being full time campaigners. Their elections should be held at the presidential midterm (2022, 2026, 2030, etc...) in order to give the people some level of recourse should the president turn out to be corrupt or incompetent.

The last thing I would do is set a 2 term limit (8 years) for all elected members of the senate and the congress.

.
 
For the Senate, I'd get rid of the 2-per-state rule and make it more proportional -- maybe expand the Senate to 150-250 if necessary for each state to get at least one Senator. Also, I'd require ranked-choice voting in all Senate primaries (on the fence of whether to ban those altogether) and general elections so that the candidates and winners are more likely to be moderate and representative of the broadest swath of each state possible. I'd keep 6 year terms because I think the fact that Senators aren't constantly running for office and are accountable to a broader electoral base tends to make them a little more serious and open-minded.

For the House, I'd make it like a 2-year (or maybe even just 1-year) version of jury duty. Every four years, people have to fill out a survey with their general demographic info, similar to the census. Every two years, based on location, age, education, race, gender, etc., a random but representative number of people get selected and paid 200k per year to be House members. There can be some process similar to voir dire in jury selection to ensure no total crazies are selected. But no more professional politicians in the House, which becomes truly representative of the American people.

What is the need for the Senate if it just becomes another House?
 
I'd fire them all atm. Make pay min wage. If someone is accused of breaking the law they are no longer a representative until the matter is handled. You vote for something you best be damn sure you are willing to personally abide by those laws. No guaranteed terms. You don't vote the way the people who elected you for the job tell you to then they can remove you. No more preventing people from voting. If they are 18 and American they can vote any legal way.
 
Term limits!
 
For the Senate, I'd get rid of the 2-per-state rule and make it more proportional -- maybe expand the Senate to 150-250 if necessary for each state to get at least one Senator. Also, I'd require ranked-choice voting in all Senate primaries (on the fence of whether to ban those altogether) and general elections so that the candidates and winners are more likely to be moderate and representative of the broadest swath of each state possible. I'd keep 6 year terms because I think the fact that Senators aren't constantly running for office and are accountable to a broader electoral base tends to make them a little more serious and open-minded.

For the House, I'd make it like a 2-year (or maybe even just 1-year) version of jury duty. Every four years, people have to fill out a survey with their general demographic info, similar to the census. Every two years, based on location, age, education, race, gender, etc., a random but representative number of people get selected and paid 200k per year to be House members. There can be some process similar to voir dire in jury selection to ensure no total crazies are selected. But no more professional politicians in the House, which becomes truly representative of the American people.
About your House membership voir dire process. You are going to have to figure out how the 'lawyers' are getting picked, who are deciding to use their preemptory challenges, and then the 'for cause' challenges based on their questions. Let me know more about that and what biases you are allowing into that system, and I will tell you what I think
 
For the Senate, I'd get rid of the 2-per-state rule and make it more proportional -- maybe expand the Senate to 150-250 if necessary for each state to get at least one Senator. Also, I'd require ranked-choice voting in all Senate primaries (on the fence of whether to ban those altogether) and general elections so that the candidates and winners are more likely to be moderate and representative of the broadest swath of each state possible. I'd keep 6 year terms because I think the fact that Senators aren't constantly running for office and are accountable to a broader electoral base tends to make them a little more serious and open-minded.

For the House, I'd make it like a 2-year (or maybe even just 1-year) version of jury duty. Every four years, people have to fill out a survey with their general demographic info, similar to the census. Every two years, based on location, age, education, race, gender, etc., a random but representative number of people get selected and paid 200k per year to be House members. There can be some process similar to voir dire in jury selection to ensure no total crazies are selected. But no more professional politicians in the House, which becomes truly representative of the American people.

I would give myself absolute authority to select all Senators and Representatives, and then sell the seats to the highest bidder. This would probably get us better results than what is actually happening now, and it would have the additional bonus of making me super rich.
 
I would give myself absolute authority to select all Senators and Representatives, and then sell the seats to the highest bidder. This would probably get us better results than what is actually happening now, and it would have the additional bonus of making me super rich.
You are going to have to buy love and affection, because you won't be getting much for free!
 
I'd stick with 2 senators per state, but I would make it so one senator is elected every 4 years (between elections for governor), rather than every 6 years, while the other senator is appointed by the sitting governor of the state upon taking office to represent the state's interests in Washington DC.

I would also increase the term for congressmen/women to 4 years, so they actually work instead of being full time campaigners. Their elections should be held at the presidential midterm (2022, 2026, 2030, etc...) in order to give the people some level of recourse should the president turn out to be corrupt or incompetent.

The last thing I would do is set a 2 term limit (8 years) for all elected members of the senate and the congress.

.
You and I do not agree often, the last paragraph is spot on. Jefferson was in favor of term limits, without them we create a political aristocracy.
 
Thought-provoking. Until this moment it hadn't occurred to me that the composition of the House could be worse than it is.
It's possible, but IMO the only people who think it makes sense to run for the House currently are by definition narcissistic and/or extremist nutjobs. I believe that a collection of ordinary people who have to go back to their day jobs in two years would be far less likely to act on wedge issues, would be much more interested in making sure everything they do has broad support, and would be more focused on kitchen-table type issues. Remember also that the Senate, POTUS, and SCOTUS would remain as checks on anything crazy such a House might attempt to do.
 
Last edited:
What is the need for the Senate if it just becomes another House?
In my proposal the Senate and the House are very different, notwithstanding that they are both more representative than the current iterations. Even if the idea of a "draft" House were rejected, the difference of 2-versus-6 year terms leaves a significant difference; the Senate would serve as a check and balance on temporary congressional whims, ensuring some degree of stability in the law.
 
About your House membership voir dire process. You are going to have to figure out how the 'lawyers' are getting picked, who are deciding to use their preemptory challenges, and then the 'for cause' challenges based on their questions. Let me know more about that and what biases you are allowing into that system, and I will tell you what I think
Off the top of my head, not sure about preemptory challenges in this context, but there could be a number of disqualifying factors, like if there are criminal charges pending against the individual, if they wouldn't pass an ordinary background check, if they have some amount/percentage of debt, whatever you want ... although some of these factors would be unconstitutional in the jury selection context, this proposal would require a major constitutional amendment in any event, so that is not really a concern.

If you have your own ideas feel free to share them.
 
Back
Top Bottom