Electoral College Projection: O 256, M 205

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2 Responses

  1. susan says:

    The real issue is not how well Obama or McCain might do in the closely divided battleground states, but that we shouldn’t have battleground states and spectator states in the first place. Every vote in every state should be politically relevant in a presidential election. And, every vote should be equal. We should have a national popular vote for President in which the White House goes to the candidate who gets the most popular votes in all 50 states.

    The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC). The bill would take effect only when enacted, in identical form, by states possessing a majority of the electoral vote — 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).

    Because of state-by-state enacted rules for winner-take-all awarding of their electoral votes, recent candidates with limited funds have concentrated their attention on a handful of closely divided “battleground” states. Two-thirds of the visits and money were focused in just six states; 88% on 9 states, and 99% of the money went to just 16 states. Two-thirds of the states and people have been merely spectators to the presidential election.

    Another shortcoming of the current system is that a candidate can win the Presidency without winning the most popular votes nationwide.

    The National Popular Vote bill has been approved by 20 legislative chambers (one house in Colorado, Arkansas, Maine, Massachusetts, North Carolina, and Washington, and two houses in Maryland, Illinois, Hawaii, California, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Vermont). It has been enacted into law in Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, and Maryland. These states have 50 (19%) of the 270 electoral votes needed to bring this legislation into effect.

    See http://www.NationalPopularVote.com

  2. Ken says:

    I am not sure this plan will be enacted, as the fear becomes candidates will focus solely on the population centers of the country and ignore the smaller towns that might get attention as part of a swing state.

    Short of your goal, I’d personally like to see:

    1) Puerto Rico get at least as much say in the presidential election as D.C. gets.
    2) Eliminate the 2 add-on electoral votes that distort the influence of the small states. (Which in the past has allowed more easily for the possibility of a popular-vote loser winning the Presidency.)
    3) Decouple electoral votes from the House of Representatives. Make one electoral vote worth the population of the the smallest state (or D.C. or Puerto Rico). If I recall correctly, this would more accurately value certain states (California would get 70 EVs instead of 55, Montana would get 2 instead of 1, etc.).

    While my 3-point plan would be far from perfect, in such a big country that doesn’t like change, this Electoral College “reform” could prove more acceptable.

    But even my plan would be opposed by the small states because of their loss of disproportionate influence.

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