Online Encyclopedia

APPORTIONMENT BILL

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V02, Page 227 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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APPORTIONMENT BILL, an act passed by the Congress of the United States after each decennial census to determine the number of members which each state shall send to the House of Representatives. The ratio of representation fixed by the original constitution was 1 to 30,000 of the free population, and the number of the members of the first House was 65. As the House would, at this ratio, have become unmanageably large, the ratio, which is first settled by Congress before -APPREHENSION 227 apportionment, has been raised after each census, as will be seen from the accompanying table. The same term is applied to the acts passed by the state legislatures for correcting and redistributing the representation of the counties. Such acts are usually ,passed at decennial intervals, more often after the federal census, but the dates may vary in different states. The state representatives are usually apportioned among the several counties according to population and not by geographical position. The electoral districts so formed are expected to be equal in proportion to the number of inhabitants; but this method has led to much abuse in the past, through the making of unequal districts for partisan purposes. (See GERRYMANDER.) If a state has received an increase in the number of its representatives and its legislature does not pass an apportionment bill before the next congressional election, the votes of the whole state elect the additional members on a general ticket and they are called " congressmen-at-large."
End of Article: APPORTIONMENT BILL
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APPORTIONMENT (Fr. apportionement; Med. Lat. apport...
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APPRAISER (from Lat. appretiare, to value)

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