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Amendment XIV

by C1ay / April 22, 2004 1:53 PM PDT

Section 2 of Amendment XIV reads, "

Representatives shall be apportioned among the several states according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each state, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the executive and judicial officers of a state, or the members of the legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such state, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such state."

Now, is it just me or does anyone else find it odd that the enumeration of representatives is related to the ratio of eligible males denied their right to vote to the whole number of males eligible to vote? What if females that are eligible to vote are denied their right to vote? Isn't this just a little politically incorrect by today's standards?

Does Section 2 of Amendment XIV violate the equal protection clause in Section 1 of the same amendment, ie "nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."? Section 2 doesn't exactly appear equal to me. What am I missing?

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What am I missing?
by J. Vega / April 22, 2004 2:39 PM PDT
In reply to: Amendment XIV

Date of adoption, 1868.

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Yes, but....
by C1ay / April 23, 2004 6:36 AM PDT
In reply to: What am I missing?

2 things still seems out of sync. Although Amd. XIV was added in 1868 when only men were allowed to vote, Amd. XIX of 1920 gave women the right to vote and Amd. XXVI of 1971 lowered the voting age to 18.

Amd. XIV alters the basis on which representation is enumerated by a formula based on eligible voters which in 1868, were male citizens, 21 years or older. Eligible voters now start at 18 years and include women. This being the case it seems to me that the intent of Amd. XIV was not preserved when Amds. XIX and XXVI were added.

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