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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Resolution by the Continental Congress concerning delegates to the Congress
United States. Continental Congress
April 19, 1784
Volume 17, Pages 33-34

[From Executive Letter Book.]

By the United States in Congress, Assembled, April 19th, 1784.

Resolved that the Legislatures of the several States be informed that whilst they are respectively represented in Congress by two Delegates only, such an unanimity for conducting the most important public concerns is necessary as can rarely be expected: that if each of the thirteen States should be represented by the two Members five out of twenty-six being only a fifth of the whole may negative any measure requiring the voice of nine States. That of eleven States now on the floor of Congress, nine being represented by only two Members from each, it is in the power of three out of twenty-five making one eighth of the whole to negative such a measure notwithstanding that by the articles of confederation, the dissent of five out of thirteen, being more than one third of the number, is necessary

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for such a negative. That in a representation of three Members from each State, not less than ten of thirty-nine could so negative a matter requiring the voice of nine States. That from facts under the observation of Congress they are clearly convinced that a representation of two Members from the several States is extremely injurious by producing delays, and for this reason is likewise much more expensive than a general representation of three Members from each State. That therefore Congress conceive it to be indispensably necessary and earnestly recommend that each State at all times when Congress are sitting, be hereafter represented by three Members at least; as the most injurious consequences may be expected from the want of such representation.