"If New York can make do with two senators, why does Adelaide need 11 of the state's 12?"
That's the question on Barnaby Joyce's mind, as he pushes for a dramatic reshuffling of the senate.
His proposal is gaining momentum, with the parliament's Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters set to consider the idea.
"I'll be looking to put forward a private member's bill if that motion is passed."
The New England MP and former deputy prime minister is calling for each state to be divided in to six regions, each represented by two senators, which he said would give rural areas better political representation.
"No one has a reasonable answer to why Adelaide has 11 senators out of South Australia's 12," Mr Joyce said.
"It's the same for Melbourne and Perth, 11 of the 12 senators from those states reside in the capital cities.
"It's an untenable situation."
Under Mr Joyce's vision, none of the six regions would be larger than 30 per cent of the state, with no urban basins - such as Sydney - stretching across multiple regions.
"It would give senators this terrible thing called a constituency, which they would have to serve and look after if the wanted to stay in a job," Mr Joyce said.
"Most people don't even know the names of their senators.
"This would mean they would represent a community, rather than a philosophy.
"It would give real political power back to regional areas. The two senators in the northern NSW region would have real power to drive local agendas."
Mr Joyce said the change could be brought about through legislation rather than a referendum.
"In the constitution, it says you'll have 12 to a state until the parliament decides otherwise," he said.