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title:“James Madison to [--]”
authors:James Madison
date written:1836-3

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last updated:Jan. 22, 2013, 7:58 a.m. UTC
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Madison, James. "Letter to [--]." The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787. Vol. 3. Ed. Max Farrand. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1911. Print.

James Madison to [--] (March 1836)

March, 1836.
It is well known that the equality of the States in the Federal Senate was a compromise between the larger and the smaller States, the former claiming a proportional representation in both branches of the Legislature, as due to their superior population; the latter an equality in both, as a safeguard to the reserved sovereignty of the States, an object which obtained the concurrence of members from the larger States. But it is equally true, though but little reverted to as an instance of miscalculating speculation, that, as soon as the smaller States had secured more than a proportional share in the proposed Government, they became favourable to augmentations of its powers, and that, under the administration of the Government, they have generally, in contests between it and the State governments, leaned to the former. . . .
Nothing is more certain than that the tenure of the Senate was meant as an obstacle to the instability, which not only history, but the experience of our country, had shown to be the besetting infirmity of popular governments. . . .

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