STATES: Adopting an Orphan

It was a real orphan of a bill: no politician wanted to claim credit for its parentage. Small wonder. It proposed throwing one-third of the legislators in Massachusetts' 240-seat house of representatives out of jobs. "It wasn't me that pushed it," declared House Speaker Thomas McGee in a typical disclaimer last week. "It wasn't McGee."

It was, in fact, the League of Women Voters that ten years ago first proposed reducing the bloated house to 160 members. Vigorous lobbying by the league got the proposal on the ballot in a 1974 referendum. It...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!