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Old 2008-12-14, 23:42   Link #5321
ZephyrLeanne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Autumn Demon View Post
Proposal to effectively replace the electoral college.

Truly getting rid of the electoral college would be too difficult because small states and current swing states would oppose the Constitutional change. The National Popular Vote aims to get around that problem by using the electoral college as a tool is to make sure whomever wins the popular vote becomes president. Under the National Popular Vote, states would agree to have their legislatures pick only electors who would vote for the winner of popular vote, regardless of how the state went. Not all states have to enter this contract for it to work, just enough so that together they have more than 270 votes amongst them.

Maryland, New Jersey, Illinois and Hawaii have already joined the National Popular Vote compact.
I think this is better. You know, the only thing stopping any country from doing this is the logistics involved. Now would be a good time to start if they want to do it in time for the next election in 2012.
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Old 2008-12-15, 00:03   Link #5322
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Autumn Demon View Post
Proposal to effectively replace the electoral college.

Truly getting rid of the electoral college would be too difficult because small states and current swing states would oppose the Constitutional change. The National Popular Vote aims to get around that problem by using the electoral college as a tool is to make sure whomever wins the popular vote becomes president. Under the National Popular Vote, states would agree to have their legislatures pick only electors who would vote for the winner of popular vote, regardless of how the state went. Not all states have to enter this contract for it to work, just enough so that together they have more than 270 votes amongst them.

Maryland, New Jersey, Illinois and Hawaii have already joined the National Popular Vote compact.
“A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.” ...
- Thomas Jefferson


“The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter.”
-Winston Churchill
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Last edited by Xellos-_^; 2008-12-15 at 00:24.
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Old 2008-12-15, 00:49   Link #5323
Shadow Kira01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xellos-_^ View Post
?A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.? ...
- Thomas Jefferson


?The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter.?
-Winston Churchill
So, you prefer to live under dictatorship instead?
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Old 2008-12-15, 00:51   Link #5324
Vexx
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The electoral college is NOT necessarily a bad thing.... some brief googling will supply reasons "for" and "against" continuing the college. Many states already require electors to follow the will of their districts.

ahem, Its kind of silly to presume to put words into someone's mouth misrepresenting them as taking an extremist position.

Last edited by Vexx; 2008-12-15 at 01:25.
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Old 2008-12-15, 00:53   Link #5325
Xellos-_^
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Originally Posted by Shadow Minato View Post
So, you prefer to live under dictatorship instead?
i prefer a republic like the US is currently where the rights and interest of the minorities are protected. Where it take a real majority at 60% to do anything not a majority of 50.0000000000001%

by minorities i mean people who hold views not share by the majorities. Not minorities as in backs, latino, asian, etc.
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Old 2008-12-15, 01:33   Link #5326
Autumn Demon
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Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
Many states already require electors to follow the will of their districts.
Many states? You consider two out of fifty to be "many states"? (Those two are Maine and Nebraska btw.)
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Old 2008-12-15, 01:46   Link #5327
james0246
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^I thought that close to 30 States had a law in place that made the electors pledge to follow the will of the popular vote when casting electoral votes? Then again, I have never been that sure as to what "pledge" means in the context of electoral law...
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Old 2008-12-15, 01:48   Link #5328
solomon
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As far as I am concerned, I can live with it. However, the Popular Vote to me is what is more important in that it is a more accurate portrayl of how the country is feeling at the time.
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Old 2008-12-15, 01:53   Link #5329
Vexx
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Hmmm, I was under the impression that over half the states had an elector pledge ... my bad I guess? I'm not totally against the idea of removing the electoral college - only that changes to important systems be considered carefully.
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Old 2008-12-15, 01:54   Link #5330
ZephyrLeanne
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Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
Hmmm, I was under the impression that about half did... my bad I guess. I'm not totally against the idea of removing the electoral college - only that changes to important systems be considered carefully.
And the logistical challenges involved. The preparation will have to start now.
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Old 2008-12-15, 03:13   Link #5331
Autumn Demon
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We seem to have had a misunderstanding. When i said only Maine and Nebraska require electors to vote for the candidate that won their district, i meant they are the only two states which split their electoral votes by Congressional district. For example, in the recent election, McCain won 4 of Nebraska's electoral college votes and and Obama won 1.

More than half of the states may require their electors to vote for whoever won the popular vote in their state, but disloyal electors aren't a problem that anyone is concerned with (although there are a few every decade).

The problem with the electoral college is that makes elections matter only in a few "swing" states. Candidates concentrate on the 15 or so close states each election and neglect the rest of the country. If you live in the majority of states which are solid Democrat or Republican, then voting doesn't matter at all. Also, small states which automatically have three electoral votes have more weight in the electoral college than bigger states (hypothetically, a person who votes in Wyoming has four times the voting power than a person who votes in Texas).

And of course, there was the 2000 election where the candidate who won the popular vote didn't become president because they didn't win a majority of the electoral college votes.

The National Popular Vote compact would fix all these issues. States would require their electors to vote for whichever candidate wins the national popular vote, not the candidate who won the popular vote in their state. Swing states would no longer matter and maybe voter turnout would be respectable for once because voting would matter wherever you live in the country.
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Old 2008-12-15, 13:20   Link #5332
Xellos-_^
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solomon View Post
As far as I am concerned, I can live with it. However, the Popular Vote to me is what is more important in that it is a more accurate portrayl of how the country is feeling at the time.
i am going disagree with this.

the popular vote is not a very accurate portrayl of a countries feeling. Take Obama's recent victory, he got a majority of the popular vote but when you look at the number more carefully you see a different picture.

Obama had the majority of his support in the NE and Western states. He was not very popular in the southern states.

Obama enjoys the support of the cities and suburbs. He does not enjoy much support in rural areas.

Saying a Candidate who won the popular vote has the support of the majority of the country is true but is not the whole truth.
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Old 2008-12-15, 14:59   Link #5333
Vexx
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The other thing to be aware of is that pictures of the US "red/blue" or whatever are misleading because we don't have an even spread of population density. Especially in this election, many of the "red" states are comprised of vast distances of sparse population, whereas the blue states tended to be densely populated or had dense population centers.

If someone could create a map in which, each state's map size was adjusted by population before painting it a political color - that would be less deceiving to the eye.
Even then many states painted red OR blue were actually 40/60 or even 49/51 splits - so you can't say State X has one set of values or another.
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Old 2008-12-15, 16:21   Link #5334
LeoXiao
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xellos-_^ View Post
i am going disagree with this.

the popular vote is not a very accurate portrayl of a countries feeling. Take Obama's recent victory, he got a majority of the popular vote but when you look at the number more carefully you see a different picture.

Obama had the majority of his support in the NE and Western states. He was not very popular in the southern states.

Obama enjoys the support of the cities and suburbs. He does not enjoy much support in rural areas.

Saying a Candidate who won the popular vote has the support of the majority of the country is true but is not the whole truth.
This is stupid because then it's like saying that people in the countryside get more power.
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Old 2008-12-15, 16:23   Link #5335
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeoXiao View Post
This is stupid because then it's like saying that people in the countryside get more power.
Just like Japan! :*(


Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx
If someone could create a map in which, each state's map size was adjusted by population before painting it a political color - that would be less deceiving to the eye.
I cant' figure out which election this is from... anyone know?


Edit: Ahh, it's supposed to be a map of the 2004 election, coloured by conspiracy theorist who believed there was vote rigging.

Last edited by Autumn Demon; 2008-12-15 at 16:34.
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Old 2008-12-15, 17:15   Link #5336
Theowne
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[QUOTE=Xellos-_^;2109346
the popular vote is not a very accurate portrayl of a countries feeling. Take Obama's recent victory, he got a majority of the popular vote but when you look at the number more carefully you see a different picture.[/QUOTE]

Do you mean electoral college?

There was only about a 7% difference in the popular vote, which doesn't make it seem as if America overwhelmingly supported him. Seems to make sense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
If someone could create a map in which, each state's map size was adjusted by population before painting it a political color - that would be less deceiving to the eye.
Cartograms.

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.co...redblue512.jpg

This one is more realistic, as it's shaded and is on a local level

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.co...nonlin1024.jpg
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Old 2008-12-15, 17:23   Link #5337
LeoXiao
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looks like a nice blue organism with a serious case of red cancerous growths.
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Old 2008-12-15, 18:06   Link #5338
Anh_Minh
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xellos-_^ View Post
i am going disagree with this.

the popular vote is not a very accurate portrayl of a countries feeling. Take Obama's recent victory, he got a majority of the popular vote but when you look at the number more carefully you see a different picture.

Obama had the majority of his support in the NE and Western states. He was not very popular in the southern states.

Obama enjoys the support of the cities and suburbs. He does not enjoy much support in rural areas.

Saying a Candidate who won the popular vote has the support of the majority of the country is true but is not the whole truth.
No... but it's precisely as he said: more accurate than the electoral college. Or do you prefer the 49% to take away the rights of the 51%?
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Old 2008-12-15, 18:31   Link #5339
iLney
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And why would the 51% be allowed to take away the rights of the 49%?

Edit: maybe those who share the same view as the 49%'s don't bother to vote since they live in a region where the candidate of the 'minority" would win anyway.
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Old 2008-12-16, 00:08   Link #5340
Aquillion
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Originally Posted by iLney View Post
And why would the 51% be allowed to take away the rights of the 49%?

Edit: maybe those who share the same view as the 49%'s don't bother to vote since they live in a region where the candidate of the 'minority" would win anyway.
But that cuts both ways. New York and California are huge democratic strongholds with massive populations and comparatively low voter turnout in many of the most democratic areas, precisely because they always go Democratic and so many people never bother to vote.

As a New Yorker myself, I strongly disagree with the assertion that there has to be some artificially-maintained balance between 'rural' and 'urban' interests. That's what got us into the situation we have now, where major, highly-productive industrialized urban areas pay huge amounts in taxes, while a disproportionate percentage of that money ends up going to undeveloped, backwater rural areas in the form of pork-barrel spending. The problem is more the senate than the electoral college -- urban and rural areas both pay taxes based primarily on their population (which, after all, is what produces their income), but every state has the same number of senators and the same power to pull in pork, so even a state that (comparatively) barely pays into the system at all, like Alabama or Alaska, gets a big chunk of the massive federal taxes payed disproportionately by the larger more prosperous states. Alabama, Alaska et all are, in effect, sucking New York dry.

But it isn't New York that's suffering the worst from this; New York can afford it. The states that are suffering the worst from this are actually the rural states, which live off the teats of the industrial urban centers, and never end up having to industrialize themselves. The equal political power guaranteed by the senate means they never have to worry about trying to compete; they can just use their senators to pull an amount of Federal money that is grossly disproportionate, per capita. The result is states with terrible education, terrible healthcare, horribly low income per person, and massive amounts of crippling poverty.

The governments in those states are actively harmful -- instead of having an incentive to vote for people who take measures to increase the state's long-term productivity, voters are encouraged to vote in senators like Ted Stevens who are good at bringing in pork, good at looting the taxes of those more industrialized urban states for cash. Why should voters support a long and painful road of economic development when they can just vote for a senator whose guaranteed political power can bring them amounts of cash that are (for their population) massively disproportionate to anything they could produce themselves?

This is actually in their own best interest. Building up Alabama's infrastructure, urbanizing it and fixing its industry could take generations, and is going to be a painful process. Why would anyone vote for that when they can just vote for the senator who grabs as much of New York's tax dollars as possible and redirects it into dirt farming subsidies, ensuring that nobody has to industrialize at all? Alabama's low population and even lower industrial effectiveness compared to New York or California means that the proportion of federal dollars its senators can pull in is going to vastly outweigh anything their population can produce themselves via industrialization, completely screwing up their priorities.

As long as rural states can depend on their guarantee of political power, they won't have an incentive to follow political strategies aimed at urbanizing and growing their own industrial power base. In the long run, this is harmful to both them and the country as a whole. If their political power more accurately represented their population, they would be forced to develop themselves instead of just looting the taxes of urban democratic states for cash.
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