Mass. Joins Popular Vote Movement to Bypass Electoral College
July 28, 2010
(ChattahBox)—The State of Massachusetts has joined a growing movement to essentially abolish the electoral college system. A new law just sent to the governor’s desk, would award the entire block of the Bay State’s electoral college votes to the winner of the national popular vote, instead of the state winner. Five states have already passed the same law, but a change to the current presidential election system would not occur until enough states pass laws that would add up to 270 of the electoral votes in play. And the National Popular Vote movement is on a mission to ensure that day comes, sooner rather than later.
The National Popular Vote group is a non-profit committed to change the way we elect our commander-in-chiefs. “The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and the District of Columbia).”
The group is opposed to the winner takes all rule that results in the election of a presidential candidate who does not win the national popular vote. The infamous 2000 Bush-Gore contest is a glaring example. And there have been other close elections that calls into question the fairness of the current electoral college system.
“Because of the winner-take-all rule, a candidate can win the Presidency without winning the most popular votes nationwide. This has occurred in 4 of the nation’s 56 presidential elections. Near-misses have been common. A shift of fewer than 60,000 votes in Ohio in 2004 would have defeated President Bush despite his nationwide lead of 3,500,000 votes.”
A reform of the electoral college would also do away with the “swing-states” strategy, forcing candidates to campaign in all 50 states.
Massachusetts now joins the states of Illinois, New Jersey, Hawaii, Maryland, and Washington that have passed popular vote legislation, accounting for 23 percent of the 270 electoral college votes needed to make a change.
“The bill, which passed on a 28-to-9 vote, now heads to Democratic Governor Deval Patrick’s desk. The governor has said in the past that he supports the bill, said his spokeswoman Kim Haberlin.”
“Under the law, which was enacted by the House last week, all 12 of the state’s electoral votes would be awarded to the candidate who receives the most votes nationally.”
Just imagine, if the eight-years under George W. Bush never happened.