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Myth of the Month 9: The US Constitution and the Origins of the Senate and Electoral College

 

Why does our government work the way it does? Is it  supposed to represents citizens, or states? We consider the origins of  the U. S. Constitution, particularly the creation of the controversial  bodies (Senate and Electoral College) that represent the public in  skewed and disproportionate ways. We dispel the false notion that these  bodies were created in order to protect small states, tracing instead  the Framers' quest to tamp down the "excess of democracy" of the 1780s,  wrest control over monetary policy away from the poor majority, and  strike a careful balance between slave and non-slave states.

Suggested  further reading: Woody Holton, "Unruly Americans and the Origins of the  Constitution"; Charles Beard, "An Economic Interpretation of the  Constitution of the United States"; Michael Klarman, "The Framers'  Coup"; Max Edling, "A Revolution in Favor of Government," Robert Brown,  "Charles Beard and the Constitution"; Irwin Polishook, "Rhode Island and  the Union,"; Hillman Metcalf Bishop, "Why Rhode Island Opposed the  Federal Constitution"; Gordon Wood, "Ideological Origins of the American  Revolution" and "Creation of the American Republic"

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