Joe is not answering phone calls on it yet. He will. It will pretty much have to be some sort of backpedalling. Hopefully, somebody will come up with a video of his Fairbanks statement.
Here is what the 17th Amendment says:
The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote. The electors in each State shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the State legislatures.
When vacancies happen in the representation of any State in the Senate, the executive authority of such State shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies: Provided, That the legislature of any State may empower the executive thereof to make temporary appointments until the people fill the vacancies by election as the legislature may direct.
This amendment shall not be so construed as to affect the election or term of any Senator chosen before it becomes valid as part of the Constitution. [emphasis added]
So Miller wants to repeal an amendement to the constitution that gave an additional right to the people? Two things trouble me about this that I haven't seen brought up elsewhere:
Has Miller yet articulated what he means when he goes onto his original constitution rants about the intent of the founding fathers?
The "founding fathers" accepted the amendments known as the Bill of Rights - 1 through 10. But the subsequent 17 pertain to issues similar to the 17th, in that they gave more rights to people who had not had them.
Does he want to, by drawing a line in the sand over the 17th Amendment, attempt to revoke Amendments 18 through 27?
I hope not.
Here's what those Amendments gave to "the people" Joe wants to disenfranchise by killing the 17th Amendment:
18: Prohibition. Well, that was taken care of later,
19: A woman's right to vote. Surely that right was not intended by the founding fathers. I'm sure he'd be happier instead with a bunch of Stepford-esque wives bearing large quivers full of kids, opposite sex spouses working as their clerks, or collecting unemployment.
20: Shortened the time between election and inauguration of those elected to Federal office. It made sense to change the March date to January, although Norm Coleman might disagree.
21: Did away with the futility of the 18th Amendment.
22: Presidential term limits were set at two consecutive terms. As Rep. David Guttenberg observed about Joe, "I believe he is a career wanna-be big high mucky muck, who wants to be in charge of your life."
So - there goes the 22nd.
23: Allows the residents of the District of Columbia to participate in presidential elections. Since the majority of DC residents are African-Americans, I suspect Joe doesn't see their voting rights as having been intended by the constitutional framers, many of whom owned slaves.
24: Made poll taxes illegal. I suspect Miller wants to further privatize elections, so this one would be history.
25: Deals with disabilities of presidents. A very sensible amendment. William Safire's under-rated 1978 novel, Full Disclosure, dealt with ramifications of this (highy recommended).
26: Established a Federal voting age at 18 years old. I imagine Joe the Teabagger would throw this one out too, giving the right back to the states.
27: A weird amendment, brought about by shenanigans in the U.S. Congress regarding the way they give themselves raises. Given Joe's past history of padding his pockets with Federal funds and state funds every single chance he gets, this one is a no-brainer - get rid of it!