Everyone’s Democracy

Confronting Political Inequality in America


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About the Book

While great strides have been made since the Founding years, the United States continues to suffer from a high degree of political inequality. Some citizens have a louder voice in their democracy than others. Both the malapportioned Senate and Electoral College overrepresent Americans in small states, while gerrymandered districts poorly convert votes into power in the House of Representatives. More than four million Americans living in Washington, D.C., and the territories lack representation in Congress, while citizens everywhere face unnecessary burdens to cast ballots. Biased media and questionable political funding render it difficult to hold elected officials accountable.

This book explores these formidable problems and identifies the path to securing a fairer, more representative political system. Sourcing solutions directly from the Constitution, chapters outline the tools that could limit malapportionment, expand voting rights, control the influence of big donors and more. Achieving these reforms, however, requires an engaged citizenry that demands change from those in power.

About the Author(s)

Elliott Fullmer is an associate professor of political science at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Virginia. His research on voting behavior has been published in such scholarly journals as American Politics Research, Election Law Journal, Presidential Studies Quarterly and others. He has authored opinion pieces on democracy reform for USA Today, Richmond Times-Dispatch, and Virginia Capitol Connections. He lives in Richmond, Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Elliott Fullmer
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 257
Bibliographic Info: 10 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2022
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8857-2
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4704-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Preface 1
Introduction 3
Chapter 1. A Fateful Compromise 15
Chapter 2. Everybody’s President 41
Chapter 3. In Search of Fair Districts 71
Chapter 4. Second-Class Americans 96
Chapter 5. Eighteen Years Is Enough 116
Chapter 6. Let the People Vote! 128
Chapter 7. “If You’ve Got the Money, Honey…” 162
Chapter 8. Growing Pains 173
Conclusion 192
Chapter Notes 207
References 225
Index 237

Book Reviews & Awards

“Fullmer’s book about democracy in America focuses on several ways the US political system falls significantly short of treating citizens equally. The chapters are made up of insightful analyses of eight different problems, including gerrymandering, the Electoral College, unequal representation in the Senate, the lack of representation for the District of Columbia and other territories, and campaign finance. While all of these topics have been well discussed elsewhere, what makes this book valuable is both the usefulness of having them together under the unified theme of inequality and the high quality of the discussion. Fullmer does not just point out the problems; he ponders possible solutions and counterarguments in defense of the status quo….highly recommended.”—Choice