The Senate's not stifling a sweeping progressive majority. There is no sweeping progressive majority.

The Capitol.
(Image credit: Illustrated | iStock)

Sen. Joe Manchin's (D-W.Va.) defection from the Democrats' big spending bill has produced a lot of talk about whether states like West Virginia should have this much power in our constitutional structure in the first place. Complaints about the influence accorded to smaller states are no longer limited to progressive academics. They've gone mainstream.

But the argument that institutions like the Senate (balanced by the House), the Electoral College, and federalism among states with populations of vastly different size are anachronistic is wrong. Our polarized country needs more space for team red and blue to get away from each other, not less. Allowing one to impose its will on the other by the smallest margins will only make our divisions more bitter.

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