Published: Wednesday, Jan. 23 2013 12:05 a.m. MST
The electoral college is republicanism institutionalized and has a great
moderating effect on American politics. It forces candidates to campaign in the
center rather than appealing to the radical wings of both parties for votes. A
popular vote for President would lead to greater polarization and fragmentation.
What you are proposing is a proportional representation system a la the
gridlocked and fragmented parliaments of states such as Belgium, Spain and
Israel. I cast my vote for the electoral college - for level-headedness,
bipartisanship and moderation.
The current situation of winner takes all is, in my opinion, an abomination
because it does disenfranchise voters in States that are either mostly
Republican or Democrat. Dividing up the electoral votes, based on how a
candidate did, would not only make for a more exciting Presidential race, but
also make voters feel like their vote really does count.
This would just encourage states to gerrymander their seats even more than they
already do. It actually would've likely led to a Romney win (Democratic
house candidates got more votes than Republicans but didn't win the house
because of massive gerrymandering like in PA where it's 13-5 Republican in
their House delegation despite Democrats getting more votes overall).
"If it also reduces the likelihood of the public’s will being thwarted
by the electoral vote, then that is even better"It'd
increase it. Obama probably would've lost the election had this been in
place. Democratic house candidates nationwide got more votes than Republicans
but didn't take the house. Presumably most districts would vote in a
similar pattern. Obama could've won the popular vote by 4% and lost the
election we just had. And I'm supposed to pretend this switch increases the
likelihood of the popular vote selection winning? Hah, maybe if every state was
mandated to have non-partisan district boundary maps so that neither side could
manipulate the outcome. But they don't and Republicans (with 35ish
governorships) had control over the redistricting this go around. Conservatives
might find this appealing now but it can turn around if the 2020
census/redistricting were to be controlled by a host of Democratic governors.
The facts are these: in the 2012 election President Obama received 4.97 million
more votes than Governor Romney. And even though nationally
Congressional Democrats earned 1.1 million more votes than Congressional
Republicans, state GOP gerrymandering of districts resulted in another
GOP-controlled House of Representatives.The plan Davis suggests
would have given the electoral vote victory to Romney.What Davis
advocates is nothing less than a gerrymandering of the presidential election,
and is a transparent attempt to subvert democracy in our nation. Shame on him!
I have a very simple plan, toss out the electoral college and elect the man for
president who gets the most votes. Anytime one party proposes a
complicated election plan it makes me nervous.
For far too long, the Democrats of California and New York has manipulated the
electoral college in order to discount all Republican votes. This is not only
shameful, it is un-American.
The literal one party system in Utah does okay for the local population.If there were a single party in Washington each state could then hold
their reps and senators personally responsible for the reprehensible fiscal mess
the country is in.Currently the 2 party system allows each party to
blame the other while they each sit up to the trough at our countries
expense.One federal party with a max limit of 4 years for senators
and congressmen and no expense account and $100,000 annual check and no
retirement would attract people who want to make a difference instead of making
a mockery of our election system.Right now I would say the system is
broke or the country is broke as a result of the system.
Funny. The GOP opposed any changes to the Electoral College.Until
they lost again.
The closest thing for people to being represented in the affairs of government
of this nation is the presidential election. The best way to enhance that
representation would be to rid ourselves of the electoral college and elect the
president by a simple majority of the popular vote. The state and
local governments, often touted as being closer to the people, are over powered
by the size and power of commercial enterprises, and are actually the least
controlled by their citizens. It is extremely unlikely that the
commercial politicians would give up their advantage and control over the
voting. The only possible way to enhance the vote of people over commercial
interests is to have a national referendum and even amend the Constitution.
The Maine-Nebraska allocation method is worth careful consideration. The
trouble is that it's going to be hard to convince states that are solidly
Democrat or Republican to go for it. The popular vote would result in the
center of the country being even more of an electoral wasteland that it already
is. We are pretty much ignored now, and we'd be ignored completely under a
direct popular vote. Now THAT is real disenfranchisement.
I tend to favour one person one vote.
Abolish the electoral college! In today's fast communication world, we can
know which candidate won the popular vote (the vote that counts in a democracy)
within hours of the last poll closing. Only in 2000 did the (attempted
mis-)counting process take longer. We don't need to discuss the vote
count. We don't need to convene a group to re-vote the popular vote count.
We do not need the electoral college. If this requires an amendment,
let's do it!Attempts to make the electoral college vote more closely
reflect the popular vote are good and worthy only if we cannot eliminate this
dinosaur method altogether.Next up, make the Senate a truly
representative body. And I've got more good ideas!
Dividing more states’ electoral votes by congressional district winners
would magnify the worst features of the system. An analysis of the
whole number proportional plan and congressional district systems of awarding
electoral votes, evaluated the systems "on the basis of whether they promote
majority rule, make elections more nationally competitive, reduce incentives for
partisan machinations, and make all votes count equally. . . .Awarding electoral votes by a proportional or congressional district method
fails to promote majority rule, greater competitiveness or voter equality.
Pursued at a state level, both reforms dramatically increase incentives for
partisan machinations. If done nationally, the congressional district system has
a sharp partisan tilt toward the Republican Party, while the whole number
proportional system sharply increases the odds of no candidate getting the
majority of electoral votes needed, leading to the selection of the president by
the U.S. House of Representatives.For states seeking to exercise
their responsibility under the U.S. Constitution to choose a method of
allocating electoral votes that best serves their state’s interest and
that of the national interest, both alternatives fall far short of the National
Popular Vote plan . . ." FairVoteA second-place candidate
could still win.
To abolish the Electoral College would need a constitutional amendment, and
could be stopped by states with as little as 3% of the U.S. population.A survey of Utah voters showed 70% overall support for a national popular
vote.The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the Presidency
to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in the country, by state
law.Utah, along with 80% of states and voters that are ignored by
presidential campaigns now, would not be ignored. Every vote,
everywhere, would be politically relevant and equal in every election. Political
reality, that every gubernatorial or senatorial candidate knows, is that when
and where every vote is equal, a campaign must be run everywhere. Candidates
would need to build a winning coalition across demographics. Every
vote would be included in the state counts and national count. The
candidate with the most popular votes in the country would get the needed 270+
electoral vote majority from the enacting states. The bill has
passed 31 state legislative chambers in 21 states with 243 electoral votes, and
been enacted by 9 jurisdictions with 132 electoral votes - 49% of the 270
needed.NationalPopularVoteon Facebook via
I am fine with changing the Electoral vote. I am a Democrat and I voted for
President Obama both times.In the 2012 election President Obama won
the Electoral vote...and, the popular vote.
I am all for proportional distribution of electoral votes. This winner takes
all stuff is a corrupting force in our politics. It is the only way that every
vote counts. As the system runs today, only 50.01 percent of the votes
matter.One old Man... the funny thing, under the proposed changes
Obama would have still won. The only thing this would have changed is that Bush
would have lost to Gore. Now wouldn't that have spun things into a
tizzie. I actually think Bush did a good job responding to the
events of 9/11.... it's what happened in Iraq that damaged our nations
reputation for generations forward. Preemptive wars are ugly beast.
re:JCSpringNow in CA redistricting is not done by the party in
power. It is done by a panel--evenly split between Republicans and Democrats,
plus 4 non-affiliated voters. Additionally:Each political
party has the option of allowing decline-to-state voters to vote in their
Presidential primary.As of June 2012, California will start using
the Top Two Candidate Open Primary system for statewide offices. All
candidates for a given state or congressional office will be listed on a single
Primary Election ballot.Voters can vote for the candidate of their choice
for these offices.The top two candidates, as determined by the voters,
will advance to the General Election in November.CA's process
is significantly more "open" than UT.
Professor Davis, please note the intent of the Electoral College, as implemented
by the Constitutional founders in the Constitution, was NOT to achieve fairness
to each individual voter.The intent of the Electoral College was to
assure that larger more populous states do not gain an unfair power advantage
over the smaller less populous states. It was for fairness to all States, large
and small in selecting the President and Vice President.
I think atl134 made a valid point but I tend to agree with this concept. How
many Republicans were frustrated by the importance of Ohio? I'm totally
against a direct popular vote because it does make states like Ut and Wy
basically irrelevant. The bottom line is that candidates who win a significant
number of popular votes are still going to by and large win the election but ask
yourself this- how much pork goes to Ohio (from both parties) to buy some
"swing state" votes? I'm a conservative but I do think we need to
either redraw State lines or make some changes to the electoral college.
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