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Member since: Sat May 24, 2008, 12:33 PM
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Agreement Among the States to Elect the President by National Popular Vote Could Be Soon

The National Popular Vote bill has been enacted by 11 jurisdictions possessing 165 electoral votes—61% of the 270 electoral votes necessary to activate it, including four small jurisdictions (RI, VT, HI, DC), three medium- size states (MD, MA, WA), and four big states (NJ, IL, NY, CA). The bill has passed a total of 33 legislative chambers in 22 states—most recently by a bipartisan 40–16 vote in the Arizona House, a 28–18 vote in the Oklahoma Senate, a 57–4 vote in New York Senate, and a 37–21 vote in Oregon House. A total of 3,055 state legislators have either sponsored or cast a recorded vote for the bill.

The shortcomings of the current system of electing the President stem from state winner-take-all statutes (i.e., state laws that award all of a state’s electoral votes to the candidate receiving the most popular votes in each separate state).

Because of these state winner-take-all statutes, presidential candidates have no reason to pay attention to the issues of concern to voters in states where the statewide outcome is a foregone conclusion. As shown on the map, two-thirds of the 2012 general-election campaign events (176 of 253) were in just 4 states (Ohio, Florida, Virginia, and Iowa). Thirty-eight states were ignored.

State winner-take-all statutes adversely affect governance. “Battleground” states receive 7% more federal grants than “spectator” states, twice as many presidential disaster declarations, more Superfund enforcement exemptions, and more No Child Left Behind law exemptions.

Also, state winner-take-all statutes have allowed candidates to win the Presidency without winning the most popular votes nationwide in four of our 57 presidential elections—1 in 14 times. A shift of 59,393 votes in Ohio in 2004 would have elected John Kerry despite President Bush’s nationwide lead of over 3,000,000 votes. A shift of 214,393 votes in 2012 would have elected Mitt Romney despite President Obama’s nationwide lead of almost 5,000,000 votes.

The U.S. Constitution (Article II, Section 1) gives the states exclusive control over awarding their electoral votes: “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors....” The winner-take-all rule was used by only three states in 1789.

The National Popular Vote interstate compact would not take effect until enacted by states possessing a majority of the electoral votes—that is, enough to elect a President (270 of 538). Under the compact, the national popular vote winner would be the candidate who received the most popular votes from all 50 states (and DC) on Election Day. When the Electoral College meets in mid-December, the national popular vote winner would receive all of the electoral votes of the enacting states.

The bill ensures that every vote, in every state, will matter in every presidential election.

The National Popular Vote bill preserves the Electoral College and state control of elections.


The Republican Party Of Lincoln was the Strong Central Government Liberals of 1860

The Republican Party Of Lincoln was the Strong Central Government Liberals of 1860 - Dems were States' Rights Conservatives

As my wife and I crossed the parking lot to enter the market, I noticed a Confederate flag proudly displayed in the back window of a parked truck. Had I been given a casual opportunity, I would have liked to ask the owner if he or she was a strong Democratic voter. "Heck no! I always vote Republican!" would have been the expected answer.

My question brings the answer to a fact of history that is rarely discussed. Yes, Republicans freed the slaves. Yes, Lincoln was one of our greatest presidents. But Republicans at the time of the Civil War were the big-government, liberal party and they believed that all men were truly created equal.

In 1860, the 'new' Republican Party platform of Lincoln was for a powerful central government that was against slavery. They were for free farmland for non-slave holding western settlers, for freedom of immigration into the United States and rights to all immigrants, for building the transcontinental railroad and regulating national banks -very much a left-of-moderate party platform. The Democratic Party platform was the hard-line states' rights, pro-slavery, admittedly white-supremest as proclaimed in the Confederacy's "Cornerstone Speech" manifesto, conservative party. Many things fractured the politics of 1860. Among those were the promotion of a gold standard, the Free Soilers, and pro & anti-slavery Whigs that forced a split that dissolved the long-established Whig Party. As a result, though considered a long-shot, Lincoln's 'new' Republican Party won the election.

When we celebrate President Lincoln as one of the United States' greatest presidents with holidays and dinners we must understand the accurate accounting of history, that ideological platforms switched during the terms of the majority and consecutive Republican presidents that followed the Lincoln-Johnson terms. The long list of Republican presidents that followed Lincoln and V.P. Andrew Johnson ended with conservative Herbert Hoover and the Great Depression, caused in large part by unregulated banking, then worsened by the Hoover administration's fear that introducing any level of socialism was unacceptable -those continue as modern Republican talking points.

Democratic nominee Franklin D. Roosevelt's election win was the final indicator that both party's previous platforms had fully flipped and the economy was boosted into what is one of the great successes in our history. The New Deal followed by the G.I. Bill were two prominent progressive economic triggers that sustained a fruitful U.S. economy.

"The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." -Franklin D. Roosevelt. That approach surely seems to have worked very well for the economy. It is perhaps another part of history that we should examine more closely regarding corporate subsidies, the cap on the Payroll Tax and the lowered tax rates for the wealthiest vs. quality public health and affordable college education for all Americans.

It should be noted that some conservative "DixieCrats" remained in office well into the 20th century, but that the Confederate flag today is flown by Republican and/or Tea Party supporters almost exclusively. It is no longer flown by Democrats. In fact, we have seen modern-day Democrats file lawsuits to have the Confederate flag removed from government buildings. This is one of many, more than obvious signs of how the two rival party's platforms have flipped since Abraham Lincoln, one of our greatest, if not the greatest of all U.S. presidents.

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