Utah’s fourth congressional seat is toast for now (see Trib article). I have made it clear (here and here) that I strongly oppose on constitutional grounds the plan to get a fourth seat for Utah now in exchange for giving Washington, D.C. a full voting seat.
Jesse Harris has a pointed post about this. Jesse says that the whole exercise was a waste of time and that it showed how our supposedly conservative state was willing to toss the Constitution aside to score some minor political brownie points. I wholeheartedly agree.
I am not opposed to Washington, D.C. having proper representation in Congress. However, I strongly feel that this must be done according to the rules outlined for this purpose in the Constitution. That is, the Constitution must be amended. The fact that there is insufficient political support for doing this in no way warrants making an end run around the law. The Constitution only means something if its provisions are respected. If we ignore provisions when it is convenient, the document ultimately means nothing.
The Trib suggests here that the fourth seat for a D.C. seat deal is not quite dead yet, noting that incoming Speaker Nancy Pelosi supports the idea. So we’re not out of the woods yet.
I have fought spoken out against this move ever since I heard about it for the same reasons you cite. One thing I found disturbing was an article (can't remember where now) which candidly noted that after the 2010 census, Utah would still only have four seats, but some other state would have an extra seat from the expanded house. How's that for selling ourselves down the river?
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