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made in the method of apportioning the representatives, but the fraction has continued to be considered. With the growth of the nation the representative has come to stand for an increasing body of persons.

While negro slavery lasted in the South, the slaves were counted for three-fifths of their actual number in determining the population of the State for purposes of apportioning representatives. If, for example, a State had a white population of 175,000 and a slave population of 100,000, the State would be awarded a representation on the basis of a population of 175,000 plus three-fifths of 100,000, or 60,000; or in all, a population of 235,000. With a ratio of one representative for each 33,000 of the inhabitants, such a State would send seven representatives to Congress. The constitutional provision in this matter was that "Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole number of free persons, including those bound to service for a term of years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three-fifths of all other persons." As the slaves had no vote, this provision gave the white people in the South a larger congressional representation than had the white people in the North. "The arrangement adopted by the Constitution was a matter of compromise and concession, confessedly unequal in its operation, but a necessary sacrifice to that spirit of conciliation which was indispensable to the union of States having great diversity of interests and physical condition and political institutions."

Topics.-Original number of representatives.-Apportionment of these.-Increasing ratio.-Increasing number of members.Fractional remainders in the several States.-Negro slavery in the system of apportionment.—The constitutional provision establishing this system.

References.-Dawes, How We Are Governed, 75-78; Ford, American Citizen's Manual, 14, 15; Hart, Actual Government, 221– 225; Macy, Our Government, 180-182; Story, On the Constitution, §§ 636-644; Bancroft, United States, vi, 264–269.

31. Qualifications of Representatives.—A representative in the United States must have the following qualifications: 1. He must be twenty-five years old. For the lower, or elective, house of the English Parliament it is required simply that the member shall not be a minor.

2. The representative must have been for seven years a citizen of the United States. He may, therefore, be a naturalized foreigner. In England, however, a foreigner, though naturalized, cannot be a member of either house of Parliament.

3. For the representative there is no property qualification and no religious test.

4. The representative, when elected, must be an inhabitant of the State in which he is chosen. Also it is expected that he will live in the district in which he is chosen. But this, like other unwritten laws, is not always followed. The reason for this provision is the thought that a representative who resides in the district will better understand the peculiar wants of his constituents than one living in some other part of the State. Under this system too much stress has sometimes been laid on the character of the representative as a local agent. "Representatives," says Judge Cooley, "are chosen in States and districts; but when chosen they are legislators for the whole country, and are bound in all they do to regard the interest of the whole. Their own immediate constituents have no more right than the rest of the nation to address them through the press, to appeal to them by petition, or to have their local interests considered by them in legislation. They bring with them their knowledge of local wants, sentiments, and opinions,

and may enlighten Congress respecting these, and thereby aid all the members to act wisely in matters which affect the whole country; but the moral obligation to consider the interest of one part of the country as much as that of another, and to legislate with a view to the best interests of all, is obligatory upon every member, and no one can be relieved from this obligation by instructions from any Moreover, the special fitness to legislate for all, which is required by the association, mutual information, and comparison of views of a legislative body, cannot be had by the constituency; and the advantages would be lost to legislation if the right of instruction were recognized."1


Actually, however, representatives and senators and members of State legislatures are elected with the very definite understanding that they are to work for the interests of their several districts or for the interests of their States; and their success is generally likely to be estimated by their constituents with reference to what they accomplish in this narrower sphere of their proper activity.

Topics. Qualifications of representatives.-The question of residence. Functions and obligations of representatives.

References.-Dawes, How We Are Governed, 80-82; Hinsdale, American Government, 148; Fiske, Civil Government, 221; Cooley, Constitutional Law, 41, 42.

32. The Method and Period of Election.—It is required by law that representatives shall be elected by districts of contiguous territory equal in number to the number of representatives. This requirement was established by an act of Congress, passed June 25, 1842.2 This was the first practical step on the part of Congress to control the election of its members. Further legislation to the same end was had in 1871, when by congressional act it was 1 Cooley, Constitutional Law, 41, 42. 2 See § 33.

provided that all votes for representatives in Congress should be by written or printed ballots. The next year, in 1872, the time for holding the elections was fixed for the Tuesday after the first Monday of November; and this provision was made to apply throughout the Union and to go into effect in 1876. But before this date-namely, in 1875 -States that had through their constitutions established a different date for voting for representatives in Congress were exempted from the operation of this law; and in 1899 the use of the voting machine was made lawful, as well as the use of written or printed ballots. This action was taken under the constitutional provision which prescribed that "the times, places, and manner of holding elections for senators and representatives shall be prescribed in each State by the legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by law make or alter such regulations, except as to the places of choosing senators." The exception concerning the places of choosing senators was inserted because it was not thought desirable that the Congress should have the right to determine where the State legislatures should meet.

The representatives are elected for two years. Although elected in November, they do not meet until December of the following year, unless summoned to an extra session. This arrangement gives the newly elected representative opportunity and incentive to become familiar with the details of procedure in the House and with the methods of acquiring in the executive departments and elsewhere, the special information which he will need from time to time in his legislative work. On the other hand, if he is elected as the champion of an idea or policy, in which his constituents are especially interested, he will have no opportunity for a year after his election to advocate that policy; and in the meantime the people thus interested are powerless to in

See § 37.

tervene by legislation in matters that vitally concern them. But it may, perhaps, still be urged that any cause or policy that is not of sufficient importance to keep itself alive for more than a year is likely to partake of the nature of a popular whim, and ought not to be represented in permanent legislation. The government is not formed to give immediate expression to gusts of popular passion, but to embody in laws, and carry out executively, the mature and abiding wishes of the nation.

Only eleven extra sessions were held in the first one hundred and fifteen years under the Constitution. As the representative's term is only half as long as that for which the President is elected, the people have an opportunity to indicate their views on important phases of the President's policy in the middle of his administration. "When vacancies happen in the representation from any State, the executive authority thereof shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies." The governor of the State has no power to fill such vacancy by appointment. Formerly, in some of the States, a majority of all the votes cast was necessary for an election; but since 1894 only a plurality has been required in all States. The short term of two years for which representatives are elected, and the failure of many of them to secure reëlection more than once or twice, renders the House less effective than it would be if the members generally served for longer periods; for by longer service they would become familiar with the necessary methods of legislation, and thus more useful both to their constituents and to the nation as a whole.

Topics.-Congressional districts.-Steps toward control of elections by Congress.-Constitutional authority for this action.Period between election and meeting of representatives.-Advantages and disadvantages of short term.-Vacancies in the House.

1 Constitution, Art. I, § 2.

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