One Man, One Vote

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. … But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.” [Declaration of Independence]

We the People of the United States … do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” [U.S. Constitution Preamble]

“The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States … No Person shall be a Representative who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen.” [U.S. Constitution Article I, Section 2]

“The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof … No Person shall be a Senator who shall not be an Inhabitant of that State for which he shall be chosen” [U.S. Constitution Article I, Section 3]

“The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each state, elected by the people thereof” [U.S. Constitution Amendment XVII]

“The words ‘people of the United States’ and ‘citizens’ are synonymous terms, … and mean the same thing. They both describe the political body who, according to our republican institutions, form the sovereignty, and who hold the power and conduct the Government through their representatives. They are what we familiarly call the ‘sovereign people,’ and every citizen is one of this people, and a constituent member of this sovereignty.” [Scott v. Sandford, 60 U.S. 393 (1856)]

“We concluded that the constitutional prescription for election of members of the House of Representatives ‘by the People,’ construed in its historical context, ‘means that as nearly as is practicable one man’s vote in a congressional election is to be worth as much as another’s.’” [Reynolds v. Sims, 377 U.S. 533 (1964)]

Corporations and other non-human entities have the constitutional right to spend and donate unlimited amounts of money for the purpose of helping to elect an unlimited number of Senators and Members of Congress in an unlimited number of States, even if the expenditure or donation is for the sole purpose of trying to help the non-human entity make an unlimited amount of money by selling an unlimited quantity of weapons of mass destruction to an unlimited number of other nations. [Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 310 (2010)]

Stephen B. Benisch, November 13, 2017

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