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One of the debates that occurred when the Constitution was being written was how should representation be determined in Congress. The large states believed that since they had more people, they should have more representatives. The small states believed they would have very little influence if this were to occur. Thus, the small states proposed having a one-house legislature in which there would be the same number of representatives per state. This was part of the New Jersey Plan. There would be three branches of government according to this plan. The Virginia Plan also had three branches of government. This plan proposed a two-house legislature with unequal representation. Fortunately, a compromise was developed known as the Great Compromise. There would be two houses of Congress. There would be unequal representation in the House of Representatives. There would be equal representation in the Senate. Thus by combining the Virginia Plan, that favored large states, and the New Jersey Plan, that favored small states, the writers were able to proceed to deal with other facets of the new plan of government.
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