Originally Published: February 8, 2018 5:55 a.m.
Re: “Don’t limit voters’ choices in U.S. Senate race” and “Insulting Voters.” The Courier and Alexandra Piacenza have come down in opposition to Rep. Travis Grantham’s proposed bill to have the State Legislature nominate U. S. Senate candidates.
While the bill does have major flaws and probably will not garner much support, it is a step in the right direction. Until the 17th Amendment in 1913, Senators were elected by the individual state legislatures. The Framers of our Constitution exhibited great wisdom in forming our government so that the House of Representatives would represent the people directly and the Senate would represent the individual state governments.
With the popular election of Senators, our states are left without direct representation in the Federal government. This situation is an impediment to “states’ rights” and allows the central government to expand its control over the states with few checks and balances. The founders did not intend for Senators to merely “stay in touch” with state representatives, but to actually represent the interests of the state government.
The 17th Amendment significantly altered the manner in which our government functions and not in a good way. Rep. Grantham’s proposal should have been to repeal the 17th amendment.