How the Electoral College Will Be Murdered

3 12 2019

Waterloo, Iowa

My first reaction: Just how, dear? How are you going to convince small state legislators willingly to give up some of their states’ voters’ marginal power and influence? Remember, a constitutional amendment needs 38 state legislatures.

Then I remembered this national popular vote compact. Several states, all of them blue states, have or will soon enact it. Meaning that those states will send electors based not on their own state’s voters, but on the national popular vote.

For now, it will make zero difference, because all the states enacting it are already blue states. Which makes me wonder what the reaction will be if, under normal procedure that we’re used to, that the Democrat wins the EC, but the Republican wins the national popular vote, and Massachusetts and all the other NPVC states have to send red electors instead of blue, and that itself makes the EC difference, swinging the ultimate outcome from blue to red.

However, just in recent years, 2000 and 2016, it has been the opposite, and it seems to be unlikely, based on the way things are shaking out, that there will be a scenario any time soon where red wins the national popular but blue wins the electoral based on state-level popular vote.

I also know that it is unlikely that SCOTUS will find the NPVC unconstitutional, because the Constitution itself does not have any hard and fast rules about how a state determines its Presidential electors.

Then it hit me:

Here’s how the Dime Store Indian, or any other Democrat President, with a Democrat Senate and House backing him/her/it up, will wind up killing the Electoral College in substance without actually doing it in constitutional amendment reality:

Think about how the United States got a de facto 21 national drinking age without unconstitutional commandeering. (SCOTUS used commandeering in the sports betting case last year.)

They’ll attach an NPVC requirement to Federal highway money to states.

Don’t accuse me of giving them ideas, because if I’ve thought of it, then someone in some blue team think tank has also.


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4 responses

3 12 2019
Alex the Goon

wonder what the reaction will be if … the Democrat wins the EC, but the Republican wins the national popular vote
Honkey, please. They’ll swear by whatever rule results in them winning, whether it’s NPVC or Muh Constitution An’ Sheeit.

4 12 2019
David In TN

Even if Trump wins in 2020, someone like the Dime Store Indian will get in eventually.

7 12 2019
UlricKerensky

There are 3 theories on the topic:

1. (Not creditable) Donors on the Right and Left want a Constitutional Convention where this will be a concession to the Left. It’s a relatively under explored Left conspiracy theory. Supposedly it’s big on Netflix right now.

2. It will be uses to put pressure on “faithless electors” like the pressure seen at both the Convention and EC level in 2016.

3. Under the (dubious) arguement that later Amendments control over “conflicting” provisions, the logic is to use https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reynolds_v._Sims to overturn the EC altogether, or at least “overcounting” with Senate Seats.

I’d say at least 3 major Dem candidates are at least implicitly implying using FDR-style “Court Packing”, and this could be seen as a justification for such measures.

Or alternatively, such measures could be used as a lever to get ratification. See of course your cite to Dole for the logic.

18 01 2020
countenance

SCOTUS will be deciding a case come June about the constitutionality of faithless electors. I think however they rule, will also be an implicit rule on the constitutionality of NPVC. You already know how I think it will turn out.

It's your dime, spill it. And also...NO TROLLS ALLOWED~!

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