Originally Posted by Unit
People that like to speculate on how this or that fix will do wonderful things for the democratic process should be asked this simple question: how much tinkering do you want to do? If the wonderful things you're envisioning now don't come to fruition, will you insist in tinkering more and more? Is there any danger of engendering a series of institutional reforms that continue to over-ride or repeal the previous reform, depending of who the most recent electoral winner happens to be?
As one of the more vocal institutional reformers in the forum, I'd say that there is no set end-point, because institutions interact with cultural norms and the political landscape in inherently unpredictable ways over long periods of time. The best we can hope is to continually tinker with the most dysfunctional parts of our system as they become problematic, without any expectation that we'll get to some perfect set of institutions. So I would say that we ought to do away with holds and the filibuster in the Senate, fiddle with the committee system, and give Washington DC congressional representation for now. Obviously people disagree, but I think that these are the most glaring shortcomings in our current institutional framework that can feasibly be reformed.