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GOP Eyes Electoral Vote Change

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by rocketsjudoka, Jan 18, 2013.

  1. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    There has been a lot of talk about changes to the Electoral College with a lot of from those on the Left. After the pasting that Republicans took in the last election it now sounds like several Republican dominated state houses are looking at this.

    http://news.msn.com/politics/gop-eyes-electoral-college-vote-count-change-dems-wary

    GOP eyes Electoral College vote count change; Dems wary

    Legislators in states controlled by Republicans are pondering a change in how Electoral College votes are awarded that might make it easier for GOP candidates to win the White House.

    BOSTON — After back-to-back presidential losses, Republicans in key states want to change the rules to make it easier for them to win.

    From Wisconsin to Pennsylvania, GOP officials who control legislatures in states that supported President Barack Obama are considering changing state laws that give the winner of a state's popular vote all of its Electoral College votes, too. Instead, these officials want Electoral College votes to be divided proportionally, a move that could transform the way the country elects its president.

    Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus endorsed the idea this week, and other Republican leaders support it, too, suggesting that the effort may be gaining momentum. There are other signs that Republican state legislators, governors and veteran political strategists are seriously considering making the shift as the GOP looks to rebound from presidential candidate Mitt Romney's Electoral College shellacking and the demographic changes that threaten the party's long-term political prospects.

    "It's something that a lot of states that have been consistently blue that are fully controlled red ought to be looking at," Priebus told the Wisconsin Journal Sentinel, emphasizing that each state must decide for itself.

    Democrats are outraged at the potential change.

    Obama won the popular vote with 65.9 million votes, or 51.1 percent, to Romney's 60.9 million and won the Electoral College by a wide margin, 332-206 electoral votes. It's unclear whether he would have been re-elected under the new system, depending upon how many states adopted the change.

    While some Republican officials warn of a political backlash, GOP lawmakers in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania are already lining up behind proposals that would allocate electoral votes by congressional district or something similar.

    Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he "could go either way" on the change and doesn't plan to push it. But he said it's a reasonable issue to debate and that he prefers that leaders discuss it well before the next presidential election.

    "It could be done in a thoughtful (way) over the next couple years and people can have a thoughtful discussion," Snyder said.

    Republican leaders in the Michigan Statehouse have yet to decide whether to embrace the change there. But state Rep. Peter Lund, a Republican who introduced a bill to change the allocation system two years ago, said some Republicans might be more receptive to his bill this year following the election.

    "We never really pushed it before," he said, adding that the bill wasn't designed to help one party more than the other.

    Democrats aren't convinced. And they warned of political consequences for Republicans who back the shift — particularly those governors up for re-election in 2014, which include the governors of Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, among others.

    "This is nothing more than election-rigging," said Michigan Democratic Chairman Mark Brewer.

    Each state has the authority to shape its own election law. And in at least seven states — Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Florida and North Carolina — Republicans control both chambers of the state legislature and the governor's office.

    Already, Maine and Nebraska have moved away from a winner-take-all system to one that allocates electoral votes based on congressional district.

    "This is a concept that's got a lot of possibility and a lot of potential," said Washington-based Republican strategist Phil Musser, acknowledging that the debate would "incite different levels of partisan acrimony." Musser also predicted that more pressing economic issues would likely take priority in most Republican-led statehouses.

    In Pennsylvania, Senate Republican leader Dominic Pileggi this week renewed his call for the Republican-controlled Legislature to revamp the way it awards electoral votes by using a method based on the popular vote that would have given Romney eight of the state's 20 votes.

    Democrats quickly criticized it as partisan scheme.

    "It is difficult to find the words to describe just how evil this plan is," said Pennsylvania state Sen. Daylin Leach, a Democrat. "It is an obscene scheme to cheat by rigging the elections."

    Gov. Tom Corbett, who supported a related proposal from Pileggi last year, had not seen the new plan and could not say whether he supports the new version, the Republican governor's spokesman Kevin Harley said.

    In Wisconsin, Republican Gov. Scott Walker has said that changing how electoral votes are allocated was an "interesting idea" but that it's not one of his priorities nor has he decided whether he supports such a change.

    It's gotten a lukewarm reception in the Republican-controlled Legislature as well. No proposal has been introduced yet and no lawmaker has announced any plans to do so, but the state Assembly speaker, Robin Vos, first proposed the change back in 2007.

    "I am open to that idea," Vos said in December as lawmakers prepared for the start of their session. "But I would have to hear all the arguments."

    All 10 of the state's Electoral College votes went to Obama last fall under the current system. If they were awarded based on the new system, the votes would have been evenly split between Obama and Romney.

    Democratic Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett sent an email plea urging people to sign a petition against the change: "We can't sit silently by as they try to manipulate the democratic process for political advantage," Barrett wrote. "We can't let them attack the very democratic institutions and rights that others have sacrificed so much to gain — just because they don't believe they can win in a fair election fight."

    So far, Republicans have only advocated for the change in states that have supported Democrats in recent elections. The view is predictably different in states where the Republican nominee is a cinch to win.

    "The Electoral College has served the country quite well," said Louisiana GOP Chairman Roger Villere, who doubles as a national party vice chairman.

    He continued: "This is coming from states where it might be an advantage, but I'm worried about what it means down the road. This is a system that has worked. That doesn't mean we can't talk about changes, but we have to be very careful about any actions we might take."

    Associated Press writers Peter Jackson in Pennsylvania, Scott Bauer in Wisconsin, Jeff Karoub and John Flesher in Michigan, and Bill Barrow in Atlanta contributed to this report.
     
  2. leroy

    leroy Contributing Member

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    What a bunch of sore losers.

    Hey repubs, the answer to winning back the White House isn't changing the rules (again...like the constant gerrymandering in Texas) to allegedly favor you. The answer is in nominating someone who isn't mentally challenged. The fact that there was a period where someone like Michelle Bachman was the leading candidate should tell you all you need to know about the dip s***s you keep throwing out there.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. Space Ghost

    Space Ghost Contributing Member

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    Further proof both parties are no different from each other. Now that Republicans want it, Democrats are against it and call it "rigging the election".

    There is only one winner if they are ever agreed to be split. The voter.

    Neither party is interested in campaigning the entire 50 states, so I do not foresee this ever happening.
     
  4. rhadamanthus

    rhadamanthus Contributing Member

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    They would not have to. But it would put some emphasis back on states with larger populations. Which is rational. The fact that freakin Ohio gets so much attention while Texas, California, and New York are virtually ignored is insane.
     
  5. HR Dept

    HR Dept Contributing Member

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    I'm wondering if this will ever happen in TX. The GOP would have to get REALLY creative in breaking up the Houston, Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio metro areas.
     
  6. pirc1

    pirc1 Contributing Member

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    Just get rid of EC.
     
  7. Space Ghost

    Space Ghost Contributing Member

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    How do you propose we do this, considering we are a republic and not a democracy.
     
  8. Space Ghost

    Space Ghost Contributing Member

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    Instead of concentrating on swing states, it would require them to concentrate on swing districts. This would require vast amount of more polling. If EC's are split, nd EC is and EC, whether its from a metropolis or podent town, USA. There is no point in concentrating on areas like Philly where its could be a 1:5 ratio when a rural district in Texas could be 4:5.
     
  9. bobrek

    bobrek Politics belong in the D & D

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    Because Democrats would never want to abolish the Electoral college - right?

    http://thehill.com/homenews/campaig...eforms-to-electoral-college-after-bush-v-gore
     
  10. leroy

    leroy Contributing Member

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  11. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    The Republicans wouldn't do it in Texas. In the article it says this is being looked at by states with Republican legislative majorities but which went Democratic in the last two elections, WI, PA, and MI. They aren't talking about reliable red states or even states like NC that have primarily been red but are now becoming swing states.
     
  12. Cannonball

    Cannonball Contributing Member

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    Their plan isn't to divide electoral vote proportionally, it's to divide them by congressional district, which tends to be disproportional. More people voted for Democrats for the House of Representatives this year but the GOP still controls the house. If votes nation wide were allocated by congressional districts, Obama would've lost despite winning the popular vote by a 5 million vote margin.

    I don't know if it's realistically possible to get rid of the Electoral College, but you can essentially make it irrelevant as far as the way it traditionally works.

    I support this.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Popular_Vote_Interstate_Compact

    That's a fair way to elect the president.

    The GOP plan could be fair if the result reflected the makeup of the state (districts drawn by a nonpartisan commission) or if they actually delegated electoral votes proportionally bases on the statewide popular vote AND you did it in every single state. But you know that's not going to happen.
     
  13. Cannonball

    Cannonball Contributing Member

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    If the GOP did it here, they'd LOSE electoral votes because the Dems would pick up at least some EV's in the large cities and border areas. Texas elected 12 Democrat US Reps this last election. That would be 12 EV's the GOP would lose if they went with the Congressional District method. So yeah, that's not happening.
     
  14. Rocket River

    Rocket River Member

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    If you can't win . . . TRY HARDER!!! EXPECT NO HAND OUTS!!!
    If we can't win . . . THE RULES NEED TO BE CHANGED!!!

    Rocket River
     
  15. rocketsjudoka

    rocketsjudoka Contributing Member

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    Yep. If they did it nationwide it might not be a bad thing but not cherry picking states.
     
  16. mc mark

    mc mark Contributing Member

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    Think about that.

    This is what the republican party has been reduced too.
     
  17. Svpernaut

    Svpernaut Contributing Member

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    I think everyone agrees the electoral college is a bad idea... ask Al Gore. I'm all for popular votes across the board.
     
  18. Commodore

    Commodore Contributing Member

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    yes because the Dems wouldn't try this as well...

    I'm not sure there are any Romney states where the state government is entirely in Dem control. That's pretty much unique to a few rust belt states.

    A popular vote getter losing could happen in any proportional representation system, this just does it by a smaller geographic area (district rather than state).

    I'm sure the Dems would love to find a judge to forbid this, but other states like Maine and Nebraska already do it, so not likely.
     
  19. rhadamanthus

    rhadamanthus Contributing Member

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    They don't have to. That's kind of the point.
     
  20. peleincubus

    peleincubus Member

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    i always thought that every state should be 50% electoral and the remaining 50% should be divided either through districts, or percentage of popular vote. it would be a lot Lot more fair. and i think the voter turnout would also increase.
     

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