Benjamin Franklin’s concern about the function of the Senate, it’s accountability, and the nature of its influence is more important today than when he raised the issue during the Constitutional Convention. More than one-half the nation’s population lives in just ten states, but they have only one-fifth of the votes in the Senate. This means that 12 percent of the U.S. population controls forty-one votes and can immobilize that chamber.
Given the transient character of the population and the changing nature of individual states, it is hard to justify this imbalance. Rules of the Senate, such as the filibuster must be reformed to encourage open debate and actual votes on the nation’s business.