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title:“Notes for a Speech by John Dickinson (I)”
authors:John Dickinson
date written:1787-7-9

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Dickinson, John. "Notes for a Speech by John Dickinson (I)." Supplement to Max Farrand's The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787. Ed. James H. Hutson. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1987. 157-58. Print.

Notes for a Speech by John Dickinson (I) (July 9, 1787)

Contemplate the Increase of the Empire
Proportion from Numbers is allmost universally the best Rule but our peculiar Circumstances render it imperfect if not unsafe.
16 or 17 new States will arise if We have not introduced all the southern states. Pennsylvania New York Massachusetts will most probably be subdivided.
The old parts of these states will contribute greatly more to public uses. Is each new state instantly to start into an Equality of power by its Numbers only? The Inhabitants will undoubtedly be very numerous but poor in Comparison with the others. They will contribute little or Nothing. The Laws will be slighted. They will be broken and yet they will have and exercise a Right of legislating for the older states.1 The best Philosophy is drawn from Experiments The best Policy from Experience. I know of late where the utmost Frugality was practiced while the Members of Assembly were chosen in some proportion to the Taxes of each County. When Numbers were admitted as the principle the very Reverse took Place. The Members from Counties that paid little or Nothing disposed of the whole Property of the State. No State ever to exceed the proportion of 20 to 1 to the smallest. The present proportion to be established. Every new state to be put on the same footing with the smallest then Contributions to determine provided.

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