How to Salvage Article I: The Crumbling Foundation of Our Republic

24 Pages Posted: 24 Feb 2020

Date Written: June 2017


Article I is the first article of the Constitution because it was to be the foundation of our republic. "Republic" means the people's government rather than that of a king or an oligarchy. To make the federal government a republic, Article I assigns the power to decide the overarching issues of policy to a legislature whose members are supposed to be accountable to the people. The members of this legislature, Congress, would therefore bear personal responsibility to the people for the consequences of these pivotal decisions. This responsibility would tend to link the actions of the federal government to the interests of the people. This linkage remained strong until a half century ago, when politicians began to evade Article I's foundational purpose. This piece proposes a statute in order to force elected officials to again shoulder responsibility for their actions.

Keywords: Article I, Honest Deal Act, accountable, accountability, political accountability, personal responsibility

JEL Classification: K20, K30, K40

Suggested Citation

Schoenbrod, David, How to Salvage Article I: The Crumbling Foundation of Our Republic (June 2017). Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, Vol. 40, No. 3, 2017, Available at SSRN:

David Schoenbrod (Contact Author)

New York Law School ( email )

185 West Broadway
New York, NY 10013
United States
212-431-2339 (Phone)
212-431-9205 (Fax)

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics