For example, while California (population: 39,144,818) has two senators to represent them, Wyoming (population: 586,107) also has two senators to represent them. The population of California is more than 66 times the population of Wyoming, but California and Wyoming still have equal representation in the Senate.

The Senate has a great amount of power when it comes to passing legislation and approving Supreme Court nominees. Though, a Wyomingite's vote counts significantly more than a Californian's vote.

  • 25
    It's not a defect, it's a feature.
    – user1530
    Apr 30, 2016 at 18:35
  • 3
    @user1530 Asking why something is does not imply that one thinks it's a defect.
    – phoog
    Aug 13, 2021 at 14:04

1 Answer 1


Because it was a compromise struck at the Constitutional Convention between the large colonies like Virginia and New York, and the smaller colonies like Connecticut and Rhode Island that all states would get an equal say in the Senate to prevent the large states from forcing their policies on the Smaller states.

It was known as the Connecticut Compromise. This was done because the states have rights too, and each state will have an equal say in matters before the senate.

The other side of the compromise was that the House of Representatives does have proportional representation. Roughly speaking, the idea was for the House to represent the people and the Senate to represent the states.

  • 25
    +1 Note that the other side of the compromise was proportional representation in the House. Roughly speaking, the idea was for the House to represent the people and the Senate to represent the states.
    – Era
    Apr 29, 2016 at 23:05
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    @KDog - While I tend to agree that these principles when applied as intended do, they can also be used to oppress as was done throughout the US south in the 50's and 60s. Oct 28, 2016 at 15:26
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    @DeplorableNumber9035768 - The Constitution was groundbreaking. Confederations were already well known in the 18th century; you can pick up histories like Thucydides' and find confederations of city-states easily. Oct 28, 2016 at 15:46
  • 1
    @indigochild - You should create your own answer then. Oct 28, 2016 at 16:20
  • 3
    It should also be noted that the members of the senate used to be picked by the state legislators and not the people in the state.
    – Joe W
    Aug 13, 2021 at 13:21

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