Well before the delegates to the Constitutional Convention had reached "the Great Compromise" that accorded the states equal votes in the Senate, they had already decided much about the upper house. They determined that the state legislatures would choose the Members of the Senate from their respective states; that it would have fewer Members than the lower house; and that the Members of the Senate would serve longer terms. By these mechanisms, the delegates integrated the states into the national legislative process, "protected" and "preserved" the states, provided for a forum to represent "the great mercantile interest," and made the Senate's membership more "permanent," in order to modify the more "transient impressions" that would influence the House. They perceived the Senate to be a more deliberative body. The House of Representatives, the Framers thought, would initiate most legislation, whereas the Senate was to be a corrective and a refinement of what emanated from the House.