By Jon Dougherty
(TNS) As Rush Limbaugh noted recently on his widely followed daily talk show, Democrats have a nasty penchant for wanting to change the rules of the game when they lose elections.
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When they win them, everything is hunky-dory, on the up-and-up, and a ‘mandate’ from the people. But when they lose, the system’s “broken,” “crooked,” or “fixed” against them because after all, they’re Democrats and we know that all Americans love all Democrats.
After President Trump won a wide electoral majority in 2016 but lost the “popular vote” to Hillary Clinton — becoming the second president to do so since 2000 when George Bush narrowly defeated Al Gore after weeks of lawsuits over Florida’s electoral votes — Democrats blew a gasket and vowed to ‘fix’ the problem by going around that pesky, ‘outdated,’ ‘complicated,’ ‘undemocratic’ Electoral College.
So allied groups founded the National Popular Vote Compact, or NPVC, a movement designed to pass legislation in as many states as it takes to reach 270 electoral votes, the number needed to win the presidency.
NPVC is an Electoral College workaround; states that have passed it have vowed to award all of their electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote.
The movement’s website states that a national vote — electing presidents by majority — will be more ‘fair’ because ‘every vote will count’:
The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact will guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes across all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The Compact ensures that every vote, in every state, will matter in every presidential election. The Compact is a state-based approach that preserves the Electoral College, state control of elections, and the power of the states to control how the President is elected.
There’s no other way to say this, but that claim is one gargantuan lie. And after Virginia’s lower chamber voted Friday to pass the NPVC, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), no slouch on the history of the Constitution, explained the fallacy of the logic behind the vote and the lie behind the group’s stated claims:
VA House votes to give all of Virginia’s votes to California & New York. Because that’s definitely in the interest of Virginians. Jefferson & Madison would be appalled. https://t.co/P4mELKgrOw
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) February 14, 2020
He’s exactly right and that’s why the founders settled on the Electoral College in the first place rather than a pure democracy. Yes, the founders ‘didn’t trust the people’ to elect presidents, as Democrats claim. But it wasn’t so much they didn’t trust citizens as they didn’t trust that the citizens would be properly informed enough to make rational decisions because they would be unduly influenced by political campaigns and, yes, the media. Sound familiar?
But also, they were concerned, as Cruz noted, that the country’s population centers would decide who would become president. And over time, presidents and presidential contenders would only campaign in, and pander to, high population centers, leaving out the rest of the country and the people who lived there.
There is also this potential scenario, as Kyle Sammin noted in The Federalist:
Imagine a scenario like the 2004 election, where Republican George W. Bush won a majority of the popular vote, but did not win any of the current NPVIC member states (Colorado will be the exception to this rule when it joins the compact). The result would have been that John Kerry’s ten best states all cast their votes for his Republican opponent. Does that make any sense? Is that the will of the voters in those states?
That said, at present there is no way for the NPVC people to reach the 270-vote threshold necessary to guarantee every president from here until the next revolution would be a Democrat (which is really the purpose of the movement). Besides, even if enough states were to pass it, the Constitution prohibits states from making compacts with each other without the express consent of Congress.
Still, Democrats are going to continue looking for ways around the constitutional electoral process hard-fought and hard-won by our founders because they seem to have an inability to accept defeat.
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