rdw4potus
rdw4potus
Joined: Mar 11, 2010
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December 2nd, 2010 at 9:34:01 AM permalink
Quote: ItsCalledSoccer

As best I understand the guts of the process, the Constitution says only that 1) electors elect the President, 2) it's left up to the states as to how they pick their electors, and 3) the law frees the electors to vote (or not vote) for anyone they want to.

I think all the states have laws now that says the electors are chosen by the popular vote of the state, but that doesn't mean it has to be that way. It would be just as legal if they picked names from a lottery or the governor hand-picked them or whatever, it's left up to the states. I think in the earlier elections, electors were chosen by the state houses. Practically speaking, any state official that advocates something other than popular vote selection would probably not ever gain enough support to do something else, but that doesn't mean it's not allowed.

I don't know exactly how the parties choose their slate of electors, but I think it's a combination of rewarding loyal workers and high officials. For example, in Texas 2008, our Republican electors included the Governor, the head of the state party, and I think George H. W. Bush (but I'd have to check it).

Lastly, electors are bound only by their promise. Look back through several elections and you'll see a stray EV every now and then, or an abstention. And, remember after the 2000 election, some Democrats were lobbying Republican electors to either abstain and deny GWB the majority, or to vote for Gore. It didn't happen, but there were efforts in that direction.



I'm a big fan of the way that Nebraska does things. They have 5 electoral votes, 1 for each congressional district and 1 for each senate seat. The senate-related electors will vote for the winner of the state popular vote. The congressional district-related electors vote for the popular vote winner in that district. To me, that is a much more fair way of apportioning electoral college votes than the winner-take-all system.
"So as the clock ticked and the day passed, opportunity met preparation, and luck happened." - Maurice Clarett
pacomartin
pacomartin
Joined: Jan 14, 2010
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December 2nd, 2010 at 4:04:53 PM permalink
Quote: rdw4potus

I'm a big fan of the way that Nebraska does things. They have 5 electoral votes, 1 for each congressional district and 1 for each senate seat. The senate-related electors will vote for the winner of the state popular vote. The congressional district-related electors vote for the popular vote winner in that district. To me, that is a much more fair way of apportioning electoral college votes than the winner-take-all system.



There is an organization called National Popular vote that is trying to get the states to all adopt this plan.
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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December 2nd, 2010 at 5:14:32 PM permalink
Quote: JohnnyQ

And for what its worth and I hope only slightly off-topic, can anyone provide a reasonable
argument why the small states should still be so vastly over-represented per capita in the
Senate ?

I'll change that when I get to be king for a day.



Because it equals things out. The advantage of a bi-cameral system is that you get differen types of chambers. The House is designed to be the "fast" chamber. Can flip control every 2 years and rules to get things done fast. The Senate is designed to go sloooow, kind of like a parent to an unruly child.

As it turns out you need such a system to help keep the states equal. Say you had just the House of Representatives. (Put the legalistic arguments aside, assume the Constitution could and would be changed if needed.) Congress could make a "state tax" of $1 Billion per state for a project that benefited some states more than others. Say it was to "rebuild" the country's largest cities. Small states would not even qualify.

The Founding Fathers they were a smart bunch. Ever see the proposed EU Constitution compared to the US Constitution?
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
pacomartin
pacomartin
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December 2nd, 2010 at 5:30:42 PM permalink
Quote: AZDuffman

The Founding Fathers they were a smart bunch. Ever see the proposed EU Constitution compared to the US Constitution?



As stated earlier the constitution does not specify the winner take all method for voting a states electoral votes. The states simply gravitate that way, because it makes the state more important. To quote Nelson Rockefeller, if we elected the president by popular vote all campaigning would be BOMFOG, meaning that candidates would only talk about the Brotherhood of Man, and the Fatherhood of God since there would be no reason to talk specifics.

But now we have a situation where no candidate can be bothered to travel to California. It is simply a waste of money for a republican candidate, and the last thing a democratic candidate needs is photos of him at a fund raiser in San Francisco circulating among the rural states.

It needs to be a populist movement, where people want to vote their congressional district. They want their vote to count if they live in a suburban community even if their is a megalopolis in the state. And vica versa. I am sure that people in Dallas want their vote heard despite the overwhelming size of the suburban and rural Texas.
AZDuffman
AZDuffman
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December 2nd, 2010 at 5:43:10 PM permalink
Quote: pacomartin

As stated earlier the constitution does not specify the winner take all method for voting a states electoral votes. The states simply gravitate that way, because it makes the state more important. To quote Nelson Rockefeller, if we elected the president by popular vote all campaigning would be BOMFOG, meaning that candidates would only talk about the Brotherhood of Man, and the Fatherhood of God since there would be no reason to talk specifics.

But now we have a situation where no candidate can be bothered to travel to California. It is simply a waste of money for a republican candidate, and the last thing a democratic candidate needs is photos of him at a fund raiser in San Francisco circulating among the rural states.

It needs to be a populist movement, where people want to vote their congressional district. They want their vote to count if they live in a suburban community even if their is a megalopolis in the state. And vica versa. I am sure that people in Dallas want their vote heard despite the overwhelming size of the suburban and rural Texas.



The Constitution says electors are to be chosen "in a manner prescribed by the states" or somehting like that. CA actually had a bill to split up their votes with the "senator" electors going to the winner overall and then the districts would be split by district. I don't have the biggest problem with this espically in the big states. I do have a problem getting rid of the electoral college. The EC was set up so more votes matter and it works out that way.
All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others
pacomartin
pacomartin
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December 2nd, 2010 at 9:57:06 PM permalink
Yes I know that California had a bill to change their procedure. But the governor killed it.

I actually think that most people could live with the change, but no "large" state wants to be the first to do it. They all feel like no one will pay attention to them if they do.

For instance both PA and OHIO are fought over every election like cats and dogs.

If PA votes to give one electoral vote for the winner of each of it's 19 congressional districts, then the only two that were close were the 3rd and the 12th.


In the last election McCain would have won 10 electoral college votes while Obama would have won 11 (9 districts and the 2 for winning the majority in the state).

Obama won PA by 620K votes, but he won Philadelphia and Pittsburgh by 580K votes.

The battleground congressional districts.


pacomartin
pacomartin
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December 20th, 2010 at 1:51:50 PM permalink
If you want to be the first to know the results of the apportionment 8AM manana Pacific Coast Time.

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