Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Is someone dumping meth in the Capital water supply?

I applied for a job in Des Moines this morning--there's an airport in Des Moines, at least, and real pork tenderloin sammiches--and now I'm rethinking this whole "moving back to Iowa" thing. Apparently Iowans have gotten really stupid since I left.

The state senate wants to give Iowa's Electoral College votes to the "national winner"--whether or not that individual has the majority of the votes in Iowa.

It looks like a flat-out attempt to circumvent the U.S. Constitution:
"If states that represent a majority of electoral votes in the country pass this compact, we can get a national popular vote without Congress, without a constitutional amendment, without any of those folks," [Senate Majority Leader Michael Gronstal--who apparently has no party, or else the Register assumes anyone reading their paper from another part of the county automagically knows he's a Democrat] said.

Yeah, the organized fraud assures no one I vote for will ever win the state's electoral votes anyway, but at least there used to be a thin veneer of legitimacy about it. The state may not have gone to the guy the legal residents with U.S. citizenship wanted, but at least they had numbers to back it up.


mvymvy said...

The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC).

Every vote would be politically relevant and equal in presidential elections.

The bill would take effect only when enacted, in identical form, by states possessing a majority of the electoral votes—that is, enough electoral votes to elect a President (270 of 538). When the bill comes into effect, all the electoral votes from those states would be awarded to the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC).

The Constitution gives every state the power to allocate its electoral votes for president, as well as to change state law on how those votes are awarded.

The bill is currently endorsed by 1,246 state legislators — 460 sponsors (in 48 states) and an additional 786 legislators who have cast recorded votes in favor of the bill.

The National Popular Vote bill has been endorsed by the New York Times, Chicago Sun-Times, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, Hartford Courant, Miami Herald, Sarasota Herald Tribune, Sacramento Bee, The Tennessean, Fayetteville Observer, Anderson Herald Bulletin, Wichita Falls Times, The Columbian, and other newspapers. The bill has been endorsed by Common Cause, Fair Vote, and numerous other organizations.

In Gallup polls since 1944, only about 20% of the public has supported the current system of awarding all of a state’s electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the most votes in each separate state (with about 70% opposed and about 10% undecided). The recent Washington Post, Kaiser Family Foundation, and Harvard University poll shows 72% support for direct nationwide election of the President. This national result is similar to recent polls in Arkansas (80%), California (70%), Colorado (68%), Connecticut (73%), Delaware (75%), Kentucky (80%), Maine (71%), Massachusetts (73%), Michigan (73%), Mississippi (77%), Missouri (70%), New Hampshire (69%), Nebraska (74%), Nevada (72%), New Mexico (76%), New York (79%), North Carolina (74%), Ohio (70%), Pennsylvania (78%), Rhode Island (74%), Vermont (75%), Virginia (74%), Washington (77%), and Wisconsin (71%).

The National Popular Vote bill has passed 22 state legislative chambers, including one house in Arkansas, Colorado, Maine, Michigan, North Carolina, and Washington, and both houses in California, Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Vermont. The bill has been enacted by Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, and Maryland. These four states possess 50 electoral votes — 19% of the 270 necessary to bring the law into effect.


mvymvy said...

What the Founding Fathers said in the U.S. Constitution is "Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors . . ." The U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly characterized the authority of the state legislatures over the manner of awarding their electoral votes as "plenary" and "exclusive."

Neither of the two most important features of the current system of electing the President (namely, that the voters may vote and the winner-take-all rule) are in the U.S. Constitution. Neither was the choice of the Founders when they went back to their states to organize the nation's first presidential election.

In 1789, in the nation's first election, the people had no vote for President in most states, it was necessary to own a substantial amount of property in order to vote, and only 3 states used the winner-take-all rule (awarding all of a state's electoral vote to the candidate who gets the most votes in the state). Since then, as a result of changes in state laws, the people have the right to vote for presidential electors in 100% of the states, there are no property requirements for voting in any state, and the winner-take-all rule is used by 48 of the 50 states.

The normal process of effecting change in the method of electing the President is specified the U.S. Constitution, namely action by the state legislatures. This is how the current system was created, and this is the built-in method that the Constitution provides for making changes.

HeatherRadish said...

...and the national popular vote is still a shitty idea that will fuck over the small states by giving all the power to determine the POTUS to the large states, which is exactly why those large-state newspapers endorse it.

And why I assume the Iowa Dems are batshit nuts (well, one reason of many) for rushing this through.

Dad29 said...

This idea was pushed by Hillary Clinton a few years back.

Not hard to figure out why...