United States congressional apportionment is the process by which seats in the United States House of Representatives are distributed among the 50 states according to the most recent decennial census mandated by the United States Constitution. Each state is apportioned a number of seats which approximately corresponds to its share of the aggregate population of the 50 states. However, every state is constitutionally guaranteed at least one seat.
The number of voting seats in the House of Representatives has been 435 since 1913, capped at that number by the Reapportionment Act of 1929—except for a temporary (1959–1962) increase to 437 when Alaska and Hawaii were admitted into the Union.
Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.
The Number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty Thousand, but each State shall have at least one Representative;…
"Three-fifths of all other persons" refers to the inclusion of 3⁄5 of the slaves in the population base
Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice-President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.
Reapportionments normally occur following each decennial census, though the law that governs the total number of representatives and the method of apportionment to be carried into force at that time are enacted prior to the census.
The decennial apportionment also determines the size of each state's representation in the U.S. Electoral College. Under Article II, Section 1, Clause 2 of the U.S. Constitution, the number of electors of any state equals the size of its total congressional delegation (House and Senate seats).
Federal law requires the Clerk of the House of Representatives to notify each state government no later than January 25 of the year immediately following the census of the number of seats to which it is entitled. If the number of seats has changed, the state determines the boundaries of congressional districts—geographical areas within the state of approximately equal population—in a process called redistricting. Any citizen of the State can challenge the constitutionality of the redistricting in their US district court.
Because the deadline for the House Clerk to report the results does not occur until the following January, and the states need sufficient time to perform the redistricting, the decennial census does not affect the elections that are held during that same year. For example, the electoral college apportionment during 2000 presidential election was still based on the 1990 census results. Likewise, the congressional districts and the electoral college during the 2020 general elections will still be based on the 2010 census.
The size of the U.S. House of Representatives refers to total number of congressional districts (or seats) into which the land area of the United States proper has been divided. The number of voting representatives is currently set at 435. There are an additional five delegates to the House of Representatives. They represent the District of Columbia and the territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, which first elected a representative in 2008, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Puerto Rico also elects a resident commissioner every four years.
Since 1789, when the Federal Government began operating under the Constitution, the number of citizens per congressional district has risen from an average of 33,000 in 1790 to almost 700,000 as of 2008. Prior to the 20th century, the number of representatives increased every decade as more states joined the union, and the population increased.
The ideal number of members has been a contentious issue since the country's founding. George Washington agreed that the original representation proposed during the Constitutional Convention (one representative for every 40,000) was inadequate and supported an alteration to reduce that number to 30,000. This was the only time that Washington pronounced an opinion on any of the actual issues debated during the entire convention.
In Federalist No. 55, James Madison argued that the size of the House of Representatives has to balance the ability of the body to legislate with the need for legislators to have a relationship close enough to the people to understand their local circumstances, that such representatives' social class be low enough to sympathize with the feelings of the mass of the people, and that their power be diluted enough to limit their abuse of the public trust and interests.
... first, that so small a number of representatives will be an unsafe depositary of the public interests; secondly, that they will not possess a proper knowledge of the local circumstances of their numerous constituents; thirdly, that they will be taken from that class of citizens 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; ...
Madison also addressed Anti-Federalist claims that the representation would be inadequate, arguing that the major inadequacies are of minimal inconvenience since these will be cured rather quickly by virtue of decennial reapportionment. He noted, however,
I take for granted here what I shall, in answering the fourth objection, hereinafter show, that the number of representatives will be augmented from time to time in the manner provided by the Constitution. On a contrary supposition, I should admit the objection to have very great weight indeed.
Madison argued against the assumption that more is better:
Sixty or seventy men may be more properly trusted with a given degree of power than six or seven. But it does not follow that six or seven hundred would be proportionally a better depositary. And if we carry on the supposition to six or seven thousand, the whole reasoning ought to be reversed. ... In all very numerous assemblies, of whatever character composed, passion never fails to wrest the scepter from reason.
The Apportionment Act of 1911 (Public Law 62-5) raised the membership of the U.S. House to 433 and provided for an apportionment. It also provided for additional seats upon the admissions of Arizona and New Mexico as states, increasing the number to 435 in 1912.
In 1921, Congress failed to reapportion the House membership as required by the United States Constitution. This failure to reapportion may have been politically motivated, as the newly elected Republican majority may have feared the effect such a reapportionment would have on their future electoral prospects. A reapportionment in 1921 in the traditional fashion would have increased the size of the House to 483 seats, but many members would have lost their seats due to the population shifts, and the House chamber did not have adequate seats for 483 members. By 1929, no reapportionment had been made since 1911, and there was vast representational inequity, measured by the average district size. By 1929 some states had districts twice as large as others due to population growth and demographic shift.
In 1929 Congress (with Republican control of both houses of Congress and the presidency) passed the Reapportionment Act of 1929 which capped the size of the House at 435 (the then current number) and established a permanent method for apportioning a constant 435 seats. This cap has remained unchanged since then, except for a temporary increase to 437 members upon the 1959 admission of Alaska and Hawaii into the Union.
Three states – Wyoming, Vermont, and North Dakota – have populations smaller than the average for a single district. As of May 2016, there is approximately one representative for every 720,000 people in the country
A 2009 lawsuit, Clemons v. Department of Commerce, sought a court order for Congress to increase the size of the House's voting membership and then reapportion the seats in accordance with the population figures of the 2010 Census. The intent of the plaintiff was to rectify the disparity of congressional district population sizes among the states that result from the present method of apportionment. Upon reaching the U.S. Supreme Court in December 2010, the holdings of the lower district and appellate courts were vacated and the case remanded to the U.S. District Court from which the case originated with instructions that the district court dismiss the case for lack of jurisdiction.
Article the first ... After the first enumeration required by the first article of the Constitution, there shall be one Representative for every thirty thousand, until the number shall amount to one hundred, after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall be not less than one hundred Representatives, nor less than one Representative for every forty thousand persons, until the number of Representatives shall amount to two hundred; after which the proportion shall be so regulated by Congress, that there shall not be less than two hundred Representatives, nor more than one Representative for every fifty thousand persons.
The proposed Wyoming Rule calls for expanding the House until the standard Representative-to-population ratio equals that of the smallest entitled unit (currently the state of Wyoming). This proposal is primarily designed to address the fact that some House districts are currently nearly twice the size of others; for instance, there are just over 1 million residents in Montana's single district, compared to about 570,000 in Wyoming's. Although a larger House size will generally result in the smallest and largest districts being proportionally closer in size, this is not always the case. Therefore, in some cases, the Wyoming Rule may actually result in an increase in the ratio of the sizes of the largest and smallest districts. For instance, after the 1990 Census and with a House size of 435, the largest district (Montana's at-large district) had 799,065 residents, 76% larger than the smallest district (Wyoming's at-large district with 453,588 residents). The Wyoming Rule would have given a House size of 547 in 1990. Using that size, the largest district (North Dakota's at-large district) would have had 638,800 residents, 92% larger than the smallest districts (Delaware's two districts at approximately 333,084 residents each), which is larger than the 76% figure mentioned above.
In 2007, during the 110th Congress, Representative Tom Davis introduced a bill in the House of Representatives that would add two seats to the House, one for Utah and one for the District of Columbia. It was passed by the House, but was tripped up by procedural hurdles in the Senate and withdrawn from consideration. An identical bill was reintroduced during the 111th Congress. In February 2009 the Senate adopted the measure 61-37. In April 2010, however, House leaders decided to shelve the proposal.
Apart from the requirement that each state is to be entitled to at least one representative in the House of Representatives, the number of representatives in each state is in principle to be proportional to its population. No fair apportionment method was devised until recently with five distinct apportionment methods having been used since the adoption of the Constitution, with none of them producing fully proportional apportionment among the states.
The first apportionment was contained in Art. I, § 2, cl. 3 of the Constitution. After the first Census in 1790, Congress passed the Apportionment Act of 1792 and adopted the Jefferson method to apportion U.S. Representatives to the states based on population. The Jefferson method required fractional remainders to be discarded when calculating each state's total number of U.S. Representatives and was used until the 1830 census. The Webster method, proposed in 1832 by Daniel Webster and adopted for the 1840 Census, allocated an additional Representative to states with a fractional remainder greater than 0.5. The Hamilton/Vinton (largest remainder) method was used from 1850 until 1900. The Vinton or Hamilton method was shown to be susceptible to an apportionment paradox. The Apportionment Act of 1911, in addition to setting the number of U.S. Representatives at 435, returned to the Webster method, which was used following the 1910 and 1930 censuses (no reapportionment was done after the 1920 census). The current method, known as the Huntington–Hill method or method of equal proportions, was adopted in 1941 for reapportionment based on the 1940 census and beyond. The revised method was necessary in the context of the cap on the number of Representatives set in the Reapportionment Act of 1929.
The apportionment methodology currently used is the method of equal proportions, so called because it guarantees that no additional transfer of a seat (from one state to another) will reduce the ratio between the numbers of persons per representative in any two states. The method of equal proportions minimizes the percentage differences in the populations of the congressional districts.
In this method, as a first step, each of the 50 states is given its one guaranteed seat in the House of Representatives, leaving 385 seats to assign.
The remaining seats are allocated one at a time, to the state with the highest priority number. Thus, the 51st seat would go to the most populous state (currently California). The priority number is determined by a formula that is mathematically computed to be the ratio of the state population to the geometric mean of the number of seats it currently holds in the assignment process, n (initially 1), and the number of seats it would hold if the seat were assigned to it, n+1.
The formula for determining the priority of a state to be apportioned the next available seat defined by the method of equal proportions is
where P is the population of the state, and n is the number of seats it currently holds before the possible allocation of the next seat. An equivalent, recursive definition is
where n is still the number of seats the state has before allocation of the next, and for n = 1, the initial A1 is explicitly defined as
Consider the reapportionment following the 2010 U.S. Census: beginning with all states initially being allocated one seat, the largest value of A1 corresponds to the largest state, California, which is allocated seat 51. After being allocated its 2nd seat, its priority value decreases to its A2 value, which is reordered to a position back in line. The 52nd seat goes to Texas, the 2nd largest state, because its A1 priority value is larger than the An of any other state. However, the 53rd seat goes back to California because its A2 priority value is larger than the An of any other state. The 54th seat goes to New York because its A1 priority value is larger than the An of any other state at this point. This process continues until all remaining seats are assigned. Each time a state is assigned a seat, n is incremented by 1, causing its priority value to be reduced and reordered among the states, whereupon another state normally rises to the top of the list.
The Census 2010 Ranking of Priority Values shows the order in which seats 51–435 were apportioned after the 2010 Census, with additional listings for the next five priorities. Minnesota was allocated the final (435th) seat. North Carolina missed its 14th seat by 15,754 residents as the 436th seat to be allocated; ten years earlier it had gained its 13th seat as the 435th seat to be allocated based on the 2000 census.
Note: The first apportionment was established by the Constitution based on population estimates made by the Philadelphia Convention, and was not based on any census or enumeration.
|Gain four||Gain two||Gain one||No change||Lose one||Lose two|
|1. Texas||1. Florida||1. Arizona
4. South Carolina
|(32 states)||1. Illinois
7. New Jersey
|1. New York|
|+12 seats gained total||−12 seats lost total|
|Effective date||Size||Change||Legal provision||Reason and/or comments|
|March 4, 1789||59||n/a||Const. Art. I, § 2, cl. 3||Seats apportioned by the Constitution|
|November 21, 1789||64||5||North Carolina ratified the Constitution with the seats apportioned by the Constitution|
|May 29, 1790||65||1||Rhode Island ratified the Constitution with the seat apportioned by the Constitution|
|March 4, 1791||67||2||1 Stat. 191||Vermont admitted|
|June 1, 1792||69||2||Kentucky admitted|
|March 4, 1793||105||36||1 Stat. 253 (Apportionment Act of 1792)||Apportionment following the First Census|
|June 1, 1796||106||1||1 Stat. 491||Tennessee admitted|
|March 1, 1803||107||1||2 Stat. 175||Ohio admitted.|
|March 4, 1803||142||35||2 Stat. 128||Apportionment following the Second Census.|
|April 30, 1812||143||1||2 Stat. 703||Louisiana admitted.|
|March 4, 1813||182||39||2 Stat. 669||Apportionment following the Third Census.|
|December 11, 1816||183||1||3 Stat. 290||Indiana admitted.|
|December 10, 1817||184||1||3 Stat. 349||Mississippi admitted.|
|December 3, 1818||185||1||3 Stat. 430||Illinois admitted.|
|December 14, 1819||186||1||3 Stat. 492||Alabama admitted.|
|March 15, 1820||3 Stat. 555||Maine admitted, 7 seats transferred from Massachusetts|
|August 10, 1821||187||1||3 Stat. 547||Missouri admitted|
|March 4, 1823||213||26||3 Stat. 651||Apportionment following the Fourth Census|
|March 4, 1833||240||27||4 Stat. 516||Apportionment following the Fifth Census|
|June 15, 1836||241||1||5 Stat. 51||Arkansas admitted|
|January 26, 1837||242||1||5 Stat. 50||Michigan admitted|
|March 4, 1843||223||19||5 Stat. 491||Apportionment following the Sixth Census, the only time the size of the House was reduced, except for the minor readjustments in 1863 and 1963.|
|March 3, 1845||224||1||5 Stat. 743||Florida admitted.|
|December 29, 1845||226||2||5 Stat. 798||Texas annexed and admitted.|
|December 28, 1846||228||2||5 Stat. 743
9 Stat. 52
|May 29, 1848||230||2||9 Stat. 58
9 Stat. 235
|March 4, 1849||231||1||9 Stat. 235||Additional seat apportioned to Wisconsin.|
|September 9, 1850||233||2||9 Stat. 452||California admitted.|
|March 4, 1853||233||9 Stat. 432||Apportionment following the Seventh Census.|
|234||1||10 Stat. 25||Additional seat apportioned to California[a]|
|May 11, 1858||236||2||11 Stat. 166||Minnesota admitted.|
|February 14, 1859||237||1||11 Stat. 383||Oregon admitted.|
|January 29, 1861||238||1||12 Stat. 126||Kansas admitted|
|June 2, 1862||239||1||12 Stat. 411||California apportioned an extra seat|
|March 4, 1863||233||6||9 Stat. 432||Apportionment following the Eighth Census, in accordance with the 1850 act, which provided for an apportionment of 233 seats|
|241||8||12 Stat. 353||Supplemental apportionment of 8 seats (1 each for Pennsylvania, Ohio, Kentucky,
Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Vermont, and Rhode Island), for an overall increase of 2 seats in the 38th Congress
|June 20, 1863||12 Stat. 633||West Virginia admitted, three seats transferred from Virginia|
|October 31, 1864||242||1||13 Stat. 32||Nevada admitted|
|March 1, 1867||243||1||14 Stat. 391||Nebraska admitted|
|March 4, 1873||283||40||17 Stat. 28||Apportionment following the Ninth Census, replacing the 1850 act|
|292||9||17 Stat. 192||Supplemental apportionment added one seat each for nine states|
|August 1, 1876||293||1||13 Stat. 34||Colorado admitted|
|March 4, 1883||325||32||22 Stat. 5||Apportionment following the Tenth Census.|
|November 2, 1889||328||3||25 Stat. 679||North and South Dakota admitted, with one and two seats respectively.|
|November 8, 1889||329||1||25 Stat. 679||Montana admitted.|
|November 11, 1889||330||1||25 Stat. 679||Washington admitted.|
|July 3, 1890||331||1||26 Stat. 215||Idaho admitted.|
|July 10, 1890||332||1||26 Stat. 222||Wyoming admitted.|
|March 4, 1893||356||24||26 Stat. 735||Apportionment following the Eleventh Census.|
|January 4, 1896||357||1||28 Stat. 109||Utah admitted.|
|March 4, 1903||386||29||31 Stat. 733||Apportionment following the Twelfth Census (1900)|
|November 16, 1907||391||5||34 Stat. 271||Oklahoma admitted|
|January 6, 1912||393||2||37 Stat. 39, incorporating 36 Stat. 557||New Mexico admitted|
|February 14, 1912||394||1||37 Stat. 39, incorporating 36 Stat. 557||Arizona admitted|
|March 4, 1913||435||41||37 Stat. 13 (Apportionment Act of 1911, §§1–2)||Apportionment following the Thirteenth Census (1910)|
|March 4, 1933||435||46 Stat. 26 (Reapportionment Act of 1929)||Apportionment following the Fifteenth Census (1930)[b]|
|January 3, 1943||435||46 Stat. 26 (Reapportionment Act of 1929)
54 Stat. 162
|Apportionment following the Sixteenth Census (1940)|
|January 3, 1953||435||55 Stat. 761||Apportionment following the Seventeenth Census[c]|
|January 3, 1959||436||1||72 Stat. 345||Alaska admitted|
|August 21, 1959||437||1||73 Stat. 8, §8||Hawaii admitted|
|January 3, 1963||435||2||72 Stat. 345
73 Stat. 8
2 U.S.C. § 2a
|Apportionment following the Eighteenth Census[d]|
|January 3, 1973||435||2 U.S.C. § 2a||Apportionment following the Nineteenth Census|
|January 3, 1983||435||2 U.S.C. § 2a||Apportionment following the Twentieth Census|
|January 3, 1993||435||2 U.S.C. § 2a||Apportionment following the Twenty-First Census|
|January 3, 2003||435||2 U.S.C. § 2a||Apportionment following the Twenty-Second Census|
|January 3, 2013||435||2 U.S.C. § 2a||Apportionment following the Twenty-Third Census|
The 2010 United States Census (commonly referred to as the 2010 Census) is the twenty-third and most recent United States national census. National Census Day, the reference day used for the census, was April 1, 2010. The census was taken via mail-in citizen self-reporting, with enumerators serving to spot-check randomly selected neighborhoods and communities. As part of a drive to increase the count's accuracy, 635,000 temporary enumerators were hired. The population of the United States was counted as 308,745,538, a 9.7% increase from the 2000 Census. This was the first census in which all states recorded a population of over half a million, as well as the first in which all 100 largest cities recorded populations of over 200,000.Apportionment (disambiguation)
Apportionment is a legal term for distribution or allotment in proper shares.
Apportionment may also refer to
Apportionment (politics), the process of allocating the power of a set of constituent voters among their political representatives
United States congressional apportionment
Apportionment in the European Parliament
National apportionment of MP seats in the Riksdag (Swedish national legislature)
Apportionment of votes in a proposed United Nations Parliamentary Assembly
New Jersey Apportionment Commission
Ohio Apportionment Board
Uniform Apportionment of Tort Responsibility Act, a Uniform Act drafted by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (NCCUSL)
Formulary apportionment, a method of allocating corporate taxation between jurisdictions
Niche apportionment models, biological models used to explain relative species abundance distributions.Apportionment (politics)
Apportionment is the process by which seats in a legislative body are distributed among administrative divisions entitled to representation.Apportionment Act of 1792
The Apportionment Act of 1792 (1 Stat. 253) was the first Apportionment Act passed by the United States Congress on April 10, 1792, and signed into law by President George Washington on April 14, 1792. The Act set the number of members of the United States House of Representatives at 105, effective with the 3rd Congress on March 4, 1793, and established that a number of representatives would be allotted to each state based on the population enumeration provided by the 1790 Census. The final apportionment, which was not part of the Act itself, was on the basis of "the ratio of one for every thirty-three thousand persons in the respective States", and used the Jefferson method which required fractional remainders to be ignored when calculating each state's total number of representatives. This apportionment method continued to be used until the 1830 census. After discarding the remainders, the average population of congressional districts was 34,436 persons.
An earlier apportionment bill had been approved by the House in February 1792 and the Senate in March 1792, but was vetoed by the President on April 5, 1792. It was the first presidential veto of legislation in American history.Apportionment Act of 1911
The Apportionment Act of 1911 (Pub.L. 62–5, 37 Stat. 13) was an apportionment bill passed by the United States Congress on August 8, 1911. The law initially set the number of members of the United States House of Representatives at 433, effective with the 63rd Congress on March 4, 1913. It also included, in section 2, a provision to add an additional seat for each of the anticipated new states of Arizona and New Mexico, bringing the total number of seats to 435.Apportionment paradox
An apportionment paradox exists when the rules for apportionment in a political system produce results which are unexpected or seem to violate common sense.
To apportion is to divide into parts according to some rule, the rule typically being one of proportion. Certain quantities, like milk, can be divided in any proportion whatsoever; others, such as horses, cannot—only whole numbers will do. In the latter case, there is an inherent tension between the desire to obey the rule of proportion as closely as possible and the constraint restricting the size of each portion to discrete values. This results, at times, in unintuitive observations, or paradoxes.
Several paradoxes related to apportionment, also called fair division, have been identified. In some cases, simple post facto adjustments, if allowed, to an apportionment methodology can resolve observed paradoxes. However, as shown by examples relating to the United States House of Representatives, and subsequently proven by the Balinski–Young theorem, mathematics alone cannot always provide a single, fair resolution to the apportionment of remaining fractions into discrete equal whole-number parts, while complying fully with all the competing fairness elements.Clemons v. Department of Commerce
Clemons v. Department of Commerce (see also United States congressional apportionment#Controversy and history) was a lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Mississippi on September 17, 2009, and unsuccessfully appealed to the United States Supreme Court, that challenged the constitutionality of the law setting membership in the United States House of Representatives at 435 members.Congressional Apportionment Amendment
The Congressional Apportionment Amendment (originally titled Article the First) is a proposed amendment to the United States Constitution that addresses the number of seats in the House of Representatives. It was proposed by Congress on September 25, 1789, but was never ratified by the requisite number of state legislatures. As Congress did not set a time limit for its ratification, the Congressional Apportionment Amendment is still technically pending before the states.
In the 1st United States Congress, James Madison put together a package of twelve constitutional amendments designed to address the concerns of Anti-Federalists, who were suspicious of federal power under the new constitution. The Congressional Apportionment Amendment is the only one of those amendments that was never ratified; ten of Madison's proposed amendments were ratified as the Bill of Rights, while the other amendment proposed by Madison was ratified as the Twenty-seventh Amendment in 1992. A majority of the states did ratify the Congressional Apportion Amendment and, by the end of 1791, the amendment was just one state short of adoption. However, no state has ratified the amendment since 1792.
The amendment lays out a mathematical formula for determining the number of seats in the House of Representatives. It would initially have required one representative for every 30,000 constituents, with that number eventually climbing to one representative for every 50,000 constituents. As the amendment was never passed, Congress has set the size of the House of Representatives by statute. Throughout the 19th century, the House continually gained new members, but, with one brief exception, there have been 435 voting members in the House of Representatives since the passage of the Apportionment Act of 1911.Federal voting rights in Puerto Rico
Voting rights of United States citizens in Puerto Rico, like the voting rights of residents of other United States territories, differ from those of United States citizens in each of the fifty states and the District of Columbia. Residents of Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories do not have voting representation in the United States Congress, and are not entitled to electoral votes for President. The United States Constitution grants congressional voting representation to U.S. states, which Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories are not, specifying that members of Congress shall be elected by direct popular vote and that the President and the Vice President shall be elected by electors chosen by the States.Puerto Rico is a territory under the sovereignty of the federal government, but is not part of any state nor is it a state itself. It has been organized (given a measure of self-rule by the Congress) subject to the Congress' plenary powers under the territorial clause of Article IV, sec. 3, of the U.S. Constitution. In the U.S. House of Representatives, Puerto Rico is entitled to a Resident Commissioner, a delegate who is not allowed to vote on the floor of the House, but can vote on procedural matters and in House committees. In most other U.S. overseas (and historically pre-state) territories, as well as the District of Columbia, a similar representative position is styled Delegate.
The lack of direct voting representation in Congress for residents of the territory has been an issue since the U.S. Congress granted U.S. citizenship to Puerto Rico citizens in 1917. All judicial claims have been met with political or constitutional challenges; therefore, there has been no change in Puerto Rico's representation in the Congress or representation on the electoral college for the U.S. citizens residing in Puerto Rico.
Like other territories, Puerto Rico can participate in the presidential primary process. It holds a primary election in the spring of each presidential election year. Then the parties choose delegates to the Republican and Democratic National Convention, who are pledged to vote at that convention for the winners of Puerto Rico's primary, but that's the end of their participation in the presidential election. See United States presidential primaries in Puerto Rico, 2016.Federalist No. 54
Federalist Paper No. 54 is an essay by James Madison, the fifty-fourth of The Federalist Papers. It was published on February 12, 1788 under the pseudonym Publius, the name under which all The Federalist papers were published. This paper discusses the way in which the seats in the United States House of Representatives are apportioned among the states. It is titled "The Apportionment of Members Among the States". The essay was erroneously attributed to John Jay in Alexander Hamilton's enumeration of the authors of the various Federalist Papers.
The chief concern of the article is the representation of slaves in relation to taxation and representation. This federalist paper states that slaves are property as well as people, therefore requiring some representation. This representation is decided to be every three out of five slaves are to be counted, or 3/5 of the total number of slaves.
They decided to use population as a determinant of votes in the House of Representatives, but the three fifths compromise that had taken place a year earlier before this paper was the event that sparked controversy between states, men, and political parties. James Madison, Hamilton's major collaborator, later President of the United States and "Father of the Constitution." He wrote 29 of the Federalist Papers, although Madison himself, and many others since then, asserted that he had written more. A known error in Hamilton's list is that he incorrectly ascribed No. 54 to John Jay, when in fact Jay wrote No. 64, has provided some evidence for Madison's suggestion. Nearly all of the statistical studies show that the disputed papers were written by Madison, but as the writers themselves released no complete list.Gerrymandering in the United States
Gerrymandering in the United States is the practice of setting boundaries of electoral districts to favor specific political interests within legislative bodies. Partisan gerrymandering to increase the power of a political party has been practiced since the beginning of the United States.
After racial minorities were granted the power to vote, some jurisdictions engaged in racial gerrymandering to weaken the political power of minority voters. In some instances, political parties have colluded to protect incumbents by engaging in bipartisan gerrymandering.
In the United States, redistricting takes place in each state about every ten years, following the decennial census, and has always been regarded as a political exercise, which in most states is controlled by state legislators and governor. When one party controls the state House, Senate and governor's office, it is in a strong position to gerrymander district boundaries to advantage their side and disadvantage their political opponents. As an example, Maryland's 3rd congressional district (see map on right) is currently among the most gerrymandered districts in the United States. There is no opportunity for gerrymandering for Senate seats, as each senator is elected by a whole of state constituency, nor in the seven states that have only one member in the House of Representatives.
Throughout the 20th century, courts have grappled with the legality of the various types of gerrymandering and have devised different standards for the different types of gerrymandering. Various legal and political remedies have been proposed to prevent gerrymandering, including court-ordered redistricting plans, redistricting commissions, and alternative voting systems that do not depend on drawing boundaries for single-member electoral districts.Juan R. Torruella
Juan Rafael Torruella del Valle Sr. [Spanish: xwan rafaˈel t̪orueʎa d̪el βaʎe] (born June 7, 1933) is a Puerto Rican jurist, who currently serves as a United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. He is the first and to date only Hispanic to serve in that court. He was also a competitive sailor participating in four Olympics.Kansas's congressional districts
Kansas is currently divided into 4 congressional districts, each represented by a member of the United States House of Representatives. The number of districts in Kansas remained unchanged after the 2010 Census. Since 2010, the state's congressional delegation has been composed of all Republicans. However, following the 2018 elections, one incumbent was ousted by a Democratic challenger, changing the state's delegation to a 3-1 Republican majority.Open Our Democracy Act
The Open Our Democracy Act is a bill introduced in the United States House of Representatives by U.S. Representative John Delaney. The bill would establish Election Day as a federal holiday, mandate open and top-two primary elections so that all eligible voters can participate in them, and end gerrymandering by requiring independent commissions to draw the districts in each state.The bill has been cosponsored by House representatives John Yarmuth, Derek Kilmer, Jared Polis, and Scott Peters. The most recently documented action on it was a review by the United States House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice. It has not yet been voted on or gone on the House Calendar.
Delaney submitted the current version of the bill on July 21, 2017, in the 115th Congress. Delaney had previously proposed two similar bills, one in 2015 (H.R. 2655 of the 114th Congress), and another 2014 (H.R. 5334 of the 113th Congress). In both cases, the House did not bring the bill to a vote.Redistricting
Redistricting is the process of drawing electoral district boundaries in the United States. A congressional act passed in 1967 requires that representatives be elected from single-member districts, except when a state has a single representative, in which case one state-wide at-large election be held.Redistricting in Virginia
Redistricting in Virginia has been a controversial topic due to allegations of gerrymandering. In the 2017 Virginia General Assembly, all of the redistricting reform bills were killed.Revenue Act of 1924
The United States Revenue Act of 1924 (43 Stat. 253) (June 2, 1924), also known as the Mellon tax bill cut federal tax rates and established the U.S. Board of Tax Appeals, which was later renamed the United States Tax Court in 1942. The bill was named after U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Andrew Mellon.
The Revenue Act was applicable to incomes for 1924.The bottom rate, on income under $4,000, fell from 1.5% to 1.125% (both rates are after reduction by the "earned income credit").
A parallel act, the Indian Citizenship Act of 1924 (43 Stat. 253, Ch. 233 (1924)), granted all non-citizen resident Indians citizenship. Thus the Revenue Act declared that there were no longer any "Indians, not taxed" to be not counted for purposes of United States Congressional apportionment.
President Calvin Coolidge signed the bill into law.
Both a normal Tax and a surtax were levied against the net income of individuals, as shown in the following table:
Exemption of $1,000 for single filers and $2,500 for married couples and heads of family. A $400 exemption for each dependent under 18.Webster/Sainte-Laguë method
The Webster/Sainte-Laguë method, often simply Webster method or Sainte-Laguë method (French pronunciation: [sɛ̃t.la.ɡy]), is a highest quotient method for allocating seats in party-list proportional representation used in many voting systems. It is named in Europe after the French mathematician André Sainte-Laguë and in United States after statesman and senator Daniel Webster. The method is quite similar to the D'Hondt method, but uses different divisors. In most cases the largest remainder method delivers almost identical results. The D'Hondt method gives similar results too, but favors larger parties compared to the Webster/Sainte-Laguë method. Often there is an electoral threshold, that is a minimum percentage of votes required to be allocated seats.
Webster first proposed the method in 1832 and in 1842 the method was adopted for proportional allocation of seats in United States congressional apportionment (Act of 25 June 1842, ch 46, 5 Stat. 491). It was then replaced by Hamilton method and in 1911 the Webster method was reintroduced. The method was again replaced in 1940, this time by the Huntington–Hill method. In France, André Sainte-Laguë introduced the method in his 1910 article. It seems that French and European literature was unaware of Webster until after World War II.
The Webster/Sainte-Laguë method is used in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iraq, Kosovo, Latvia, New Zealand, Norway and Sweden. In Germany it is used on the federal level for the Bundestag, and on the state level for the legislatures of Baden-Württemberg, Bremen, Hamburg, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate, and Schleswig-Holstein. In Denmark it is used for 40 out of the 179 seats in the Folketing, supplementing the D'Hondt method.
The Webster/Sainte-Laguë method was used in Bolivia in 1993, in Poland in 2001, the Palestinian Legislative Council in 2006. A variant of this method, the modified Sainte-Laguë method, was used to allocate the proportional representation (PR) seats in the Constituent Assembly poll of Nepal in 2008. The 2019 Indonesian legislative election also utilized the method.The method has been proposed by the Green Party in Ireland as a reform for use in Dáil Éireann elections, and by the United Kingdom Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government in 2011 as the method for calculating the distribution of seats in elections to the country's upper house of parliament.William Chester Lankford
William Chester Lankford (December 7, 1877 – December 10, 1964) was an American politician, judge and lawyer.
Lankford was born in the Camp Creek Community of Clinch County, Georgia in 1874 and graduated from the Jasper Normal Institute in Jasper, Florida, in 1897 and the Georgia Normal College and Business Institute in Abbeville, Georgia, in 1900. He then studied law at the University of Georgia School of Law and graduated with a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) degree in 1901.
After moving to Douglas, Georgia, in 1901, Lankford began the practice of law. In 1906, he was elected Mayor of Douglas and became a member of the city Board of Education the following year. He remained on the board until 1918. On January 1, 1908, Lankford became a judge of the city court. He resigned that post on May 1, 1916, to run an unsuccessful campaign that year for the United States House of Representatives. Lankford ran again for the 66th United States Congress in 1918 and was elected as a Democrat to represent Georgia's 11th congressional district. He won reelection to that seat six additional terms before losing in 1932.
Following his congressional service, Lankford returned to practicing law. He worked in the General Accounting Office in Washington, D.C. from January 1935 through October 1942. On December 10, 1964, he died in Twin Lakes, Georgia, and was buried in Douglas Cemetery in the city of Douglas.