I also think minors should have the chance to become a major player if they play it right, they should be able to expand, conquer (Just take a look at the USA - used to be just a colony, today the only real superpower),
but they should be at a disadvantage compared to the majors in some points, doesn't really matter how it is done to me.
As it is now minors are pointles(but i still like to have them), i always just conquer them if they are near, and I don't like either the way they capture resources all over the map, sometimes at the other end of the galaxy.
Minor having the ability to become major would make the game even more unpredictable, and to me, fun.
I know some don't like minors to behave agressively so it should be optional, but it should be there.
This is what Stardock gets for taking request