|admit that this distinction cannot be perfectly preserved. In a due balanced government, it is perhaps absolutely necessary to give the executive qualified legislative powers, and the legislative or a branch of them judicial powers in the last resort. It may possibly also, in some special cases, be advisable to associate the legislature, or a branch of it, with the executive, in the exercise of acts of great national importance. But still the maxim is a good one, and a separation of these powers should be sought as far as is practicable. I can scarcely imagine that any of the advocates of the system will pretend, that it was necessary to accumulate all these powers in the senate.|
There is a propriety in the senate's possessing legislative powers. This is the principal end which should be held in view in their appointment. I need not here repeat what has so often and ably been advanced on the subject of a division of the legislative power into two branches. The arguments in favor of it I think conclusive. But I think it equally evident, that a branch of the legislature should not be invested with the power of appointing officers. This power in the senate is very improperly lodged for a number of reasons --These shall be detailed in a future number.
ON THE ORGANIZATION AND POWERS OF THE SENATE (PART II)
"THE FEDERAL FARMER," Richard Henry Lee, agreed with "Brutus" (see Antifederalist No. 62) on three points--that the Senatorial term of office should be limited to three or four years; that Senators should be liable to recall by the States; and that the office should be rotated by law.
The essay is taken from the Additional Letters, pp. 89-97.
. . . . The senate is an assembly of 26 members, two from each state; though the senators are apportioned on the federal plan, they will vote individually. They represent the states, as bodies politic, sovereign to certain purposes. The states being sovereign and independent, are all considered equal, each with the other in the senate. In this we are governed solely by the ideal equalities of sovereignties; the federal and state governments forming one whole, and the state governments an essential part, which ought always to be kept distinctly in view, and preserved. I feel more disposed, on reflection, to acquiesce in making them the basis of the senate, and thereby to make it the interest and duty of the senators to preserve distinct, and to perpetuate the respective, sovereignties they shall represent. . . .
The senate, as a legislative branch, is not large, but as an executive branch quite too numerous. It is not to be presumed that we can form a genuine senatorial branch in the United States, a real representation of the aristocracy and balance in the legislature, any more than we can form a genuine representation of the people. Could we separate the aristocratical and democratical interest, compose the senate of the former, and the house of as