Abolish the Senate to Strengthen the Separation of Powers?

John Bicknell, the executive editor of Watchdog.org, had an impish piece in the Washington Post on August 30, 2016. 

To rebalance the separation of powers, it is necessary to make Congress stronger. The best way to do that? Abolish the Senate.

The original constitutional purpose of the Senate — to represent the states, not the people who live in them — has long since been abandoned. With the 17th Amendment’s requirement that senators be popularly elected, there is no chance that it will ever be recovered.

Likewise, the original political purpose of the Senate — to act as a “cooling saucer” for the hot passions of the more-democratic House — has fallen victim to the evolving nature of American governance. The Senate has become more like the House, partly because more House members are being elected to the Senate, and also because the Senate’s real institutionalists — such as West Virginia Democrat Robert C. Byrd and Mississippi Republican Trent Lott — are no longer around….

The Senate, performing its assigned duty, continues to act as a check on the other chamber. But the result is not that the government is stymied and thus change is allowed to proceed at a slow and careful pace, as was the Founders’ intent. Rather, the inability of the two chambers to work in concert has resulted in power being claimed by the executive branch, with the legislative branch impotent to oppose the usurpation. 

Obviously, the likelihood of this happening is next to nil, seeing as it would require rewriting Article I via amendment. And Article II.

Read more at https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2016/08/30/abolish-the-senate-its-the-only-way-to-rein-in-modern-presidents/

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Topics: Reform Efforts
Tags: John Bicknell