Electoral College change could be on the way
JEFFERSON CITY ,Mo.- This election was the fifth time in U.S. history that the candidate who got the most votes failed to win the presidency, but a bill that has passed ten states and the District of Columbia can change that.
The Constitution says the states decide how to allocate their votes in the Electoral College. So far 11 states have passed bills that would assign their electoral votes based on the national vote tally.
Patrick Rosenstiel, a senior consultant with the group National Popular Vote, said the law would be activated in a presidential election year in which 270 or more electoral votes come from states that have a similar law on their books.
"And those states award all of their electors en the bloc to the candidate who gets the most popular votes in all 50 states," Ronsenstiel explained, "which is the best way, the constitutionally appropriate way, to make this change."
States that have already passed the bill represent a total of 165 electoral votes-including 20 from our neighbor to the east, Illinois. The bill has also passed in one legislative chamber in a dozen other states that compromise and additional 96 electoral votes.
The bill will have an impact before election day as well. Now presidential campaigns focus on appealing to voters in swing states. According to Rosenstiel, 94 percent of campaign events in 2016 happened in just 12 states- with more than half in only four.
"A national popular vote election would force candidates to campaign in all 50 states and the District of Columbia," he said, " because the candidate with the most votes would be guaranteed the presidency."
The bill has been introduced in all 50 states and has broad, bipartisan support, Rosenstiel said. He pointed out that in polls across the country, 70 percent or more of votes favor a nationwide vote for president.
"We're increasingly confident that the 2020 presidential election will be run under the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact."Rosenstiel said."And we believe that's going to be in the best interest of the country and the best interest of the body politic."
For more information visit www.nationalpopularvote.com
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