Constitution Daily

Smart conversation from the National Constitution Center

17th Amendment

What would the Senate look like today without the 17th Amendment?

April 8, 2018 By Scott Bomboy

It’s the 105th anniversary of the 17th Amendment, leading us to consider what today’s U.S. Senate would look like if its members weren’t directly elected by voters.

Podcast: Should the 17th Amendment be repealed?

July 13, 2017 By NCC Staff

David Schleicher of Yale University and Todd Zywicki of George Mason University discuss the text, history, and future of the contested amendment that established the direct election of U.S. senators.

Interactive Constitution: The Seventeenth Amendment

July 13, 2017 By NCC Staff

David N. Schleicher and Todd J. Zywicki look at how the Seventeenth Amendment removed from state legislatures the power to choose U.S. Senators and gave that power directly to voters in each state – an important change in the balance of power between the federal government and states.

The controversy over the direct election of Senators

April 8, 2016 By Jonathan Stahl

The 17th amendment, which was ratified 103 years ago today, profoundly changed how Senators were chosen to serve in Congress. The amendment remains controversial in the context of how the Founders viewed that process.

Constitution Check: What is the answer to political “rancor and suspicion”?

January 14, 2016 By Lyle Denniston

Lyle Denniston, the National Constitution Center’s constitutional literacy adviser, looks at references made in President Obama’s State of the Union speech, and their relation to a long-held debate about gerrymandering.

Happy birthday, 17th Amendment!

April 8, 2015 By NCC Staff

The 17th Amendment, which was ratified this day in 1913, allowed senators to be directly elected by the people rather than by state legislatures.

17th Amendment: Popular Election of Senators

December 17, 2013 By NCC Staff

This amendment provides for senators to be elected the way members of the House are—by direct election of the people.

Chris Christie’s confusing U.S. Senate situation

June 3, 2013 By Scott Bomboy

With the death of U.S. senator Frank Lautenberg, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has an unusual legal situation to deal with when it comes to naming Lautenberg’s successor.

GOP members talk about 17th Amendment repeal

August 15, 2012 By Scott Bomboy

A U.S. senate candidate’s comment about repealing the 17th amendment has some people thumbing through their Constitutions and others talking about the issue of states’ rights.

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