Great Compromise

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  • We need two houses in our legislature. The Virginia Plan is the only logical answer.
  • The big states followed the Virginia plan, while the smaller states followed the New Jersey plan.
  • No! We only need one house in the legislature. By having a unicameral legislature, It will be easier to get things done and will be a more efficient process. The New Jersey Plan is the way to go.
  • We also need representation in Congress to be based on population. That way, everyone's voice is heard.
  • No! If representation is based on population, the larger states will control Congress and the opinions of the smaller states will be pushed under the rug.
  • You need a compromise! How about we have a bicameral legislature, with the upper house (the Senate) having equal representation, and the lower house (The House of Representatives) with proportional representation.
  • Fine. That will have to do.
  • The delegates at the constitutional convention could not decide if slaves should be counted as part of the population.
  • Slaves should NOT be counted when determining the amount of representatives. The large, southern states will receive even more power than they already have and dominate the voting.
  • The slaves are part of our population. If they are not counted that would be mean. I would be sad.
  • The states also disagreed on the issue of counting slaves for federal taxes.
  • However, slaves should be counted when determining federal taxes.
  • If our slaves are not included as part of the population when determining the number of representatives, then they definitely should not be counted for tax purposes.
  • No state was willing to budge, but the delegates finally agreed to compromise.
  • We will count three-fifths of "all other persons" when determining the population for both taxation and representation purposes!
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