Real Electoral Reform
By Arnold Kling
In this essay, I argue that mass democracy reduces the quality of government.
In 1790, the largest state in the union, Virginia, had a population of under 700,000. Today, Montgomery County has a population of over 900,000. Our nine-member County Council answers to about the same number of registered voters as the entire House of Representatives of the United States at the time of the founding of the Republic.
We cannot have an accountable democracy with such large political units. We need to break the political entities in the United States down to a manageable size.
Instead of the present 50 states, the largest of which have more than 30 million people each, we should break the country into 250 states, with 1.2 million people each.
For Discussion. What unintended consequences might flow from this reform proposal?