As AMERICAN POLITICAL PRACTICE evolves, the national thraldom to what Henry Adams called "the democratic dogma" seems to deepen--so much so that it often clouds our appreciation of the uses of political complexity.
The framers of the Constitution were very much of the opposite view. They clearly wished to distance government from mob spirit and made institutional arrangements to that end. Thus we don't really vote directly for presidents but for electors whose names we seldom know; originally those electors, who usually were known, had discretion to vote for whomever they chose. Thus five Supreme Court justices, appointed for life during "good behavior," may nullify the wishes of 535 elected members of Congress by declaring a popular law unconstitutional. And while the unlimited debate rule in the Senate is customary rather than constitutional, a long-winded senator or two may thwart the will of a huge majority. Delay, dilution, obstruction. The framers were untroubled by dilatory devices, for they feared intemperate and impulsive acts far more.