Individual voters in California have almost three times the impact of Utah citizens in the presidential race, an impact that goes beyond the difference in the states' populations, says a Weber State College mathematician.
California has a much larger population than Utah, but even taking that into account voters on the West Coast have more individual "power" in a presidential election than any other state in the nation, said Lee W. Badger.The reason, he said, is because the president and vice president are elected by Electoral College votes. Citizens cast their ballots, which are tallied by state, and no matter how close the race may be the candidate with the majority of votes receives all of that state's electoral votes. California has 47 electoral votes and Utah has five.
The WSC professor took into account population, estimated voter turnout and the number of electoral votes. "In our area only Idaho voters are less influential."
Wyoming and Alaska are close to Utah in voter impact, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada and Missouri are slightly ahead and Texas voters have twice the power. New York is second highest, with slightly over 2.5 times the impact of a Utah vote.
The solution, he said, is a popular vote. "Then `one person, one vote' will be more than just a slogan."