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The Oppressed Supermajority

Updated: Mar 6

Here’s an article worth your time from the New York Times of March 5, 2019 by Columbia Law Professor, Tim Wu: “The Oppression of the Supermajority.” https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/05/opinion/oppression-majority.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share

The subtitle of the article sums it up very nicely: “The defining political fact of our time is not polarization.  It’s the thwarting of a largely unified public.”

The article goes on to cite many public policy positions about which a supermajority of voters are in agreement but which our politicians prefer to turn into wedge issues.  Given the structure of our election system, where a small group of highly engaged primary voters can determine who will represent a given district or state in Congress, members of Congress from both parties often prefer not to resolve such issues.  They serve a more politically productive purpose for incumbents by energizing primary voters at election time. The Public Check on Congress collective accountability mechanism would resolve this problem by creating a new, strong incentive for bipartisan and bicameral compromise.


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