If your baseball team consistently loses games because it doesn’t score as many runs as the other side, but your team regularly gets more hits, would you demand that the rules of baseball be changed? This is essentially the basis of the demand currently popular in social media to abolish the Electoral College.
If you are so upset that a voter in Vermont theoretically has almost three times the electoral clout in a presidential race as a voter in California, move to Vermont and claim that awesome power that is guaranteed to you by living in a low-population state. There are plenty of houses for sale here at a very reasonable price. Contact any realtor here, they will be more than happy to assist you in your endeavor.
Let the Democrats not distract themselves by talking about amending the Constitution; instead, they should try to figure out what it is that they need to do to win in the lower population states where the extra electoral votes proportionately abound. All that it takes is 13 states to block a constitutional amendment. Why would anyone think that the 13 smallest population states (who benefit from the extra electors rule) would ever agree to doing away with the Electoral College?
But if you are really interested in reforming the system, the power lies in each of the states to significantly alter the system where, if a candidate wins the state’s popular votes, he or she automatically is awarded that state’s electoral votes. The system was set up so that there would be some discretion exercised by the electors in the process. Presidential electors are not bound to vote for the winner of the popular vote in their respective states, even though some state laws purport to require that they do. It appears that presidential electors may vote for anyone they please.
The relevant part of the constitution states:
“The Electors shall meet in their respective states, and vote by ballot for President and Vice-President, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the same state with themselves; they shall name in their ballots the person voted for as President, and in distinct ballots the person voted for as Vice-President, and they shall make distinct lists of all persons voted for as President, and all persons voted for as Vice-President and of the number of votes for each, which lists they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of the government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate;
“The President of the Senate shall, in the presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the certificates and the votes shall then be counted;
“The person having the greatest number of votes for President, shall be the President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed ...”
But likely you have no idea who the presidential electors were in your state in 2016. The people have never demanded accountability from the presidential electors. Why is that?
Dave Searles is a Rutland resident.