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Electoral Plan Could Sway '08 Vote

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By AP/MICHAEL R. BLOOD

(LOS ANGELES) — A prominent Republican lawyer wants to put a proposal on the California ballot next year that could shake up the 2008 presidential contest, a change Democrats say would rig the election.

California awards its cache of 55 electoral votes to the statewide winner in presidential elections — the largest single prize in the nation. But under the proposal, the statewide winner would get only two electoral votes.

The rest would be distributed to the winning candidate in each of the state's congressional districts. In effect, that would create 53 races, each with one electoral vote up for grabs.

The left-leaning state has voted Democratic in the last four presidential elections. But the change — if it qualifies for one of two primary ballots next year and is approved by voters — would mean that a Republican would be positioned the following November to snatch 20 or more electoral votes in GOP-leaning districts.

That's a number equal to winning Ohio.

The so-called Presidential Election Reform Act is being pushed by Thomas Hiltachk, a lawyer in a Sacramento firm that represents the California Republican Party and has worked with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. He did not return phone messages left Monday at his office. A Schwarzenegger spokeswoman said the governor is not involved with the proposed initiative, and party officials said they have no connection to it.

Democratic consultant Chris Lehane called the plan "an effort to rig the system in order to fix the election."

"If this change is made, it will virtually guarantee that a Republican wins the White House in 2008," Lehane said in an e-mail.

Nineteen of the state's 53 congressional districts are represented by Republicans. President Bush carried 22 districts in 2004, while losing the statewide vote by double digits.

Only Maine and Nebraska allocate electoral votes by congressional district.

A draft of the proposed initiative says nixing the winner-take-all system would give presidential candidates "an incentive to campaign in California. ... Many of the geographic areas of the state would be as important to a candidate's chance for victory as many of the smaller states."

"We'll take a serious look at it, once it qualifies for the ballot," state Republican Party Chairman Ron Nehring said.

If it does qualify, Democrats probably would have to spend millions of dollars to defeat it, which could drain money from other races. And there are expected to be additional ballot proposals on abortion and other social issues that could drive up GOP turnout.

The state already moved its presidential primary to Feb. 5 in an attempt to increase its clout in national politics.

In that primary, Republicans will award delegates only to the top vote-getter in each congressional district. A Democrat can qualify for a delegate by winning at least 15 percent of the vote in a district.

http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/...1648314,00.html

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I like this plan, though some history buffs who happen to know the UK-style election system may have big reservations on it (as it works out almost like being voted in based on House and Senate numbers).

So, why not implement it in all 50 states?


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I like this plan, though some history buffs who happen to know the UK-style election system may have big reservations on it (as it works out almost like being voted in based on House and Senate numbers).

A first past the post system would probably be better than the current system I think. I actually support this change for this reason.

So, why not implement it in all 50 states?

This is why I said its time to scrap the electoral college, because there is no way to make this change in all states. Each state gets to decide how to allocate their electoral votes, and they don't even need to be based on how people voted in some cases.

If they did the above in all states, I think it would be a much better system than what we have no, for certain.

Of course, we we really should have is all votes counted.

Edited by Dr_LHA

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Or how about a straight-off Whitehall-style election where people vote for Reps and Senators every four years; then president is from party with largest combined number.

Hey, Whitehall-style election works even with highly uneducated electorate!


2005/07/10 I-129F filed for Pras

2005/11/07 I-129F approved, forwarded to NVC--to Chennai Consulate 2005/11/14

2005/12/02 Packet-3 received from Chennai

2005/12/21 Visa Interview Date

2006/04/04 Pras' entry into US at DTW

2006/04/15 Church Wedding at Novi (Detroit suburb), MI

2006/05/01 AOS Packet (I-485/I-131/I-765) filed at Chicago

2006/08/23 AP and EAD approved. Two down, 1.5 to go

2006/10/13 Pras' I-485 interview--APPROVED!

2006/10/27 Pras' conditional GC arrives -- .5 to go (2 yrs to Conditions Removal)

2008/07/21 I-751 (conditions removal) filed

2008/08/22 I-751 biometrics completed

2009/06/18 I-751 approved

2009/07/03 10-year GC received; last 0.5 done!

2009/07/23 Pras files N-400

2009/11/16 My 46TH birthday, Pras N-400 approved

2010/03/18 Pras' swear-in

---------------------------------------------------------------------

As long as the LORD's beside me, I don't care if this road ever ends.

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Or how about a straight-off Whitehall-style election where people vote for Reps and Senators every four years; then president is from party with largest combined number.

Well I'm not sure if the US really wants to be a parlimentary democracy. The President being seperate from Congress was done that way for a reason. It's bad enough when Congress and the President are both from the same party because it basically becomes a rubber stamping presidency.

Hey, Whitehall-style election works even with highly uneducated electorate!

:angry:

Edited by Dr_LHA

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Or how about a straight-off Whitehall-style election where people vote for Reps and Senators every four years; then president is from party with largest combined number.
Well I'm not sure if the US really wants to be a parlimentary democracy. The President being seperate from Congress was done that way for a reason. It's bad enough when Congress and the President are both from the same party because it basically becomes a rubber stamping presidency.
Hey, Whitehall-style election works even with highly uneducated electorate!
:angry:
Now why does that tick you off? I was referring to India, where you actually do have a large, highly-uneducated electorate (though the percentage may have dropped since 1951, the sheer numbers certainly haven't).

2005/07/10 I-129F filed for Pras

2005/11/07 I-129F approved, forwarded to NVC--to Chennai Consulate 2005/11/14

2005/12/02 Packet-3 received from Chennai

2005/12/21 Visa Interview Date

2006/04/04 Pras' entry into US at DTW

2006/04/15 Church Wedding at Novi (Detroit suburb), MI

2006/05/01 AOS Packet (I-485/I-131/I-765) filed at Chicago

2006/08/23 AP and EAD approved. Two down, 1.5 to go

2006/10/13 Pras' I-485 interview--APPROVED!

2006/10/27 Pras' conditional GC arrives -- .5 to go (2 yrs to Conditions Removal)

2008/07/21 I-751 (conditions removal) filed

2008/08/22 I-751 biometrics completed

2009/06/18 I-751 approved

2009/07/03 10-year GC received; last 0.5 done!

2009/07/23 Pras files N-400

2009/11/16 My 46TH birthday, Pras N-400 approved

2010/03/18 Pras' swear-in

---------------------------------------------------------------------

As long as the LORD's beside me, I don't care if this road ever ends.

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Now why does that tick you off? I was referring to India, where you actually do have a large, highly-uneducated electorate (though the percentage may have dropped since 1951, the sheer numbers certainly haven't).

As, I assumed as you mentioned Whitehall you were making a dig at the British electorate!

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Doing it with some states, but not all states would be a disaster. You could manipulate this so that all the blue states are required to distribute their votes according to the popular vote, but none of the red states do. Then it will look like the Republican party gets a lot more support than they really have.


keTiiDCjGVo

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Doing it with some states, but not all states would be a disaster. You could manipulate this so that all the blue states are required to distribute their votes according to the popular vote, but none of the red states do.

Why do you think they're going after California, and not Ohio? ;)

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I am in favor of a straight popular vote. The electoral college was established in a time when most people were uneducated and it was thought they couldn't make an informed vote. Times change and so does this.

Myth of the Rational Voter

Edited by Geist

For detailed timeline, see member timeline data.

You have rights antecedent to all earthly governments: rights that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws; rights derived from the Great Legislator of the universe.

--John Adams

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Setting a good example is a far better way to spread ideals than through force of arms.

--Ron Paul

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The other reason the EC exists is to make sure smaller, less populated regions of the country don't get ignored. How will those of you who propose a straight 1-citizen-1-vote system account for that problem?

Note the tall towers of blue. In a straight system, they will be all that matters.

3d_viewpoint0.gif

One more point: if you scrap the EC, assuming you plan to keep the Senate as is (each state gets 2 members), then that'll create a lot of incentive for states with smaller populations but large areas to split up into many, even smaller, states.


Man is made by his belief. As he believes, so he is.

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