The Book of the Is (2013)
In Federalist 56, Madison defends the House against the charge that it: “will be too small to possess a due knowledge of the interests of its constituents.” The founders wanted to insure local interests were represented; Madison’s theories require Representatives to bring local knowledge to the federal House. The founders also believed: “every Representative will have much information to acquire concerning all other States.”
The House wasn’t (just) designed as a place to make laws: it was designed as a place of knowledge as well. Not only would a large House send more Representatives to Washington, it would also send more Representatives back home with new knowledge. The initial House had 65 members: the current has 435. It’s hard to see how 435 can come home and let 300 million of us know what’s going on – thus the form letters.