Page:Federalist, Dawson edition, 1863.djvu/529

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385
The Fœderalist.

zens which will sympathize least with the feelings of the mass of the People, and be most likely to aim at a permanent elevation of the few, on the depression of the many; fourthly, that defective as the number will be in the first instance, it will be more and more disproportionate, by the increase of the People, and the obstacles which will prevent a correspondent increase of the Representatives.

In general it may be remarked on this subject, that no political problem is less susceptible of a precise solution, than that which relates to the number most convenient for a representative Legislature; nor is there any point on which the policy of the several States is more at variance, whether we compare their Legislative Assemblies directly with each other, or consider the proportions which they respectively bear to the number of their constituents. Passing over the difference between the smallest and largest States, as Delaware, whose most numerous branch consists of twenty-one Representatives, and Massachusetts, where it amounts to between three and four hundred, a very considerable difference is observable among States nearly equal in population. The number of Representatives in Pennsylvania is not more than one fifth of that in the State last mentioned. New York, whose population is to that of South Carolina as six to five, has little more than one third of the number of Representatives. As great a disparity prevails between the States of Georgia and Delaware or Rhode Island. In Pennsylvania, the Representatives do not bear a greater proportion to their constituents, than of one for every four or five thousand. In Rhode Island, they bear a proportion of at least one for every thousand. And according to the Constitution of Georgia, the proportion may be carried to one to every ten electors; and must unavoidably far exceed the proportion in any of the other States.