We Americans like to think that all voters are equal — but they’re not.
Wyoming has 241,000 registered voters, and California has 14,113,000, but each state gets the same number of senators.
So in electing a senator, it’s as if each Wyoming voter were casting nearly 60 ballots for every Californian’s ballot.
Is that fair? Or does it give disproportionate power to people in Wyoming, North Dakota, Vermont, and Alaska, each of which has a small number of registered voters?
I might favor a change whereby each state continues to get at least two senators, regardless of population — but states with more registered voters get more senators.
This system wouldn’t work like the House of Representatives, which divides states into voting districts. Each senator would represent an entire state, as senators do now.
The change would mean amending the Constitution, which I don’t expect to happen. And the new system would have its flaws, as all systems do. Adding more senators would make running the Senate more costly and complex. And — since cities have more registered voters than sparsely populated farming regions — cities would gain more power over rural places, which may not be a good thing.
But are those flaws worse than the disproportionate voting system that we have now?