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§ 73. “Chosen for a Term of Six Years.”

The members of the Senate of the United States are elected by the State Legislatures for a fixed term of six years, subject to the rotation system by which one-third retire every two years. In Canada the senators, appointed by the Governor-General, hold their seats for life. In Switzerland the cantons determine the tenure of the members of the Council of States. Members of the Federal Council of Germany hold their seats at the will of the Executive Governments of the States. The Commonwealth Bill of 1891 proposed that the tenure of senators to be elected by the Legislatures should be six years, subject to the retirement of one-half the senators every three years. The same term and tenure for Senators have been embodied in the present Constitution. The length of the legal term of a senator is, therefore, twice that of the potential term of a member of the House of Representatives. The reason for this difference in length of term is that, in theory, the Senate is designed to be a continuous body, and that Senators ought to have a longer duration of membership, in order to give them greater independence and better opportunities for deliberation in dealing with proposed legislation, so that they may, if necessary, even protect the people themselves. (Foster, Comm. I. 469.)

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