Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Meta-EE and the Constitution Part 19: Twenty-Third Amendment

Section 1. The District constituting the seat of Government of the United States shall appoint in such manner as the Congress may direct: A number of electors of President and Vice President equal to the whole number of Senators and Representatives in Congress to which the District would be entitled if it were a State, but in no event more than the least populous State; they shall be in addition to those appointed by the States, but they shall be considered, for the purposes of the election of President and Vice President, to be electors appointed by a State; and they shall meet in the District and perform such duties as provided by the twelfth article of amendment.
Section 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
When I first moved to the DC area, I was struck with a giggling fit when I saw the license plate tagline: "Taxation without Representation". I still find it risible, but the gobsmack has since grown a fuzzy patina.

Here's sort of what I think: exit and voice are complements. The ability to complain about policy is as useless as <bosoms> on a warthog without the ability to signal the salience of your disapproval by hiking up your trouser legs and finding new digs. For the contiguous US as a whole, this is pretty dang tough to do all else equal which I think is one reason libertarians of a certain stripe tend to favor so-called "states rights".

But for the DC Metro area? Constituent please.

Does the 23rd make us more euvoluntary, all else equal? Not nearly as much as the ability to move to Maryland.

Of course, the cynical analyst might conclude that efforts by district residents to gain House seats (and Senate too, if I recall correctly) in a bid to mix more blue into the Capitol. But that's just cynical, people.

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Do you have suggestions on where we could find more examples of this phenomenon?