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Will NYT continue its Popular Vote Crusade

Old 11-03-04, 11:00 AM
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Will NYT continue its Popular Vote Crusade

A few months ago, NYTimes called for an end to the electoral college. Given that Bush has won the popular vote nationwide, do you think they will continue on their crusade?
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Old 11-03-04, 08:59 PM
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They should. Their points were sound.
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Old 11-03-04, 09:02 PM
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I don't think the electoral college is relevent anymore. It should go to popular vote. For one thing if your state is heavily democrat or republican you won't bother to vote because you know your vote will be wasted. That is not true if only the popular vote is used. A Texan would be more likely to go out and vote for Kerry and a Californian more likely to vote for Bush if they thought their vote might actually mean something.
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Old 11-03-04, 09:23 PM
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What exactly are the positive points for the electoral vote?
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Old 11-03-04, 09:25 PM
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Originally posted by solipsta
What exactly are the positive points for the electoral vote?
Providing the best representation of a widely diverse population.

I think it's a brilliant system.
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Old 11-03-04, 09:28 PM
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Considering it would require a Constitutional amendment which would have to be ratified by the very states you are asking to give up representation/relevance, I don't see it happening any time soon.
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Old 11-03-04, 09:33 PM
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if you see this country as a single nation, then the popular vote makes more sense.

if you see this country as a union of fifty sovereign states, the electoral college is brilliant.
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Old 11-03-04, 09:36 PM
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It's brilliant. It ensures that the leaders aren't too heavily beholden to one demographic/population center.
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Old 11-03-04, 09:36 PM
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if you see this country as a single nation, then the popular vote makes more sense.

if you see this country as a union of fifty sovereign states, the electoral college is brilliant.
I think that simplifies things too much as I'm pretty sure you'll find many people who think of the US as a single nation, yet support the EC.
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Old 11-03-04, 09:46 PM
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I have no problems with the EC. Frankly, I'd prefer if states chose their electors in the state legislatures, rather than popular vote. I'd rather Presidential candidates be forced to pander to the state governments with "professional" politicians rather than a public that's interested in sound bites and talking points.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:06 PM
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I don't see how the electoral college provides the best representation. EVERYONE voting would provide the best representation. With the electoral college, there ARE people who are discouraged from voting because of the state they live in. Therefore, these people are NOT being represented. Whether you feel they deserve to be represented is not the issue. They just aren't.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:11 PM
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Originally posted by bhk
It's brilliant. It ensures that the leaders aren't too heavily beholden to one demographic/population center.
Or rather it over-represents those lightly-populated mostly useless, usually conservative States. Why do you like this system again and oppose a truly democratic system of making it truly 1 person, 1 vote?
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Old 11-03-04, 10:21 PM
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Originally posted by Bushdog
Or rather it over-represents those lightly-populated mostly useless, usually conservative States. Why do you like this system again and oppose a truly democratic system of making it truly 1 person, 1 vote?

Because the President is in place to lead the states, not just some portion of them. If there were states that had no opportunity at being represented, then why would they desire to remain in the union?

Is it a perfect system? I wouldn't say so. But, it is far better than a system that would allow a few states garner elite status and rule, while the rest of the states lost all power.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:25 PM
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without the EC the candidates would only campaign in a few of the large cities and completely ignore the small and/or rural states
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Old 11-03-04, 10:28 PM
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Originally posted by Dead
Because the President is in place to lead the states, not just some portion of them. If there were states that had no opportunity at being represented, then why would they desire to remain in the union?

Is it a perfect system? I wouldn't say so. But, it is far better than a system that would allow a few states garner elite status and rule, while the rest of the states lost all power.
If we were voting on multiple issues, it would lend some credibility to your argument. However, we are not. We are voting on 1 of 2 candidates (basically). It's either Bush or it's Kerry.

Your argument seems to suggest that if we had a popular vote, then votes in smaller states don't count. Of course they do. But if they have fewer people, then they get fewer votes. If there are multiple smaller states with similar interests whose collective population is bigger than that of a larger state, and they vote the same way, the results WILL come out in their favor. It's that simple.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:29 PM
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Originally posted by Bushdog
Or rather it over-represents those lightly-populated mostly useless, usually conservative States. Why do you like this system again and oppose a truly democratic system of making it truly 1 person, 1 vote?
So does the Senate.

Our government was built around balancing power between large and small states.

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Old 11-03-04, 10:31 PM
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I've never understood the argument that candidates would only campaign in the major population centers if it was purely a popular vote. Wouldn't each candidate campaign and split the vote up among the dense areas, and then the rural areas would still have a lot of clout to break the tie?

As it is now the candidates ignore all but a handful of states, so I don't see how it could be much different.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:31 PM
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Originally posted by mikehunt
without the EC the candidates would only campaign in a few of the large cities and completely ignore the small and/or rural states
With EC, the candidates only campaign in a few swing states (Florida, Ohio), and completely ignore other states (California, NY, Texas, Utah). Why is THIS better? It's a simple fact of life that one human being cannot be in every single location in the US. They MUST leave out some locations. So the big locations should be left out?

What you are in essence arguing is that the minority SHOULD win.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:38 PM
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Originally posted by hahn
...Your argument seems to suggest that if we had a popular vote, then votes in smaller states don't count.

Essentially, their votes wouldn't count and politicians would have no interest or incentive to protect the rights and provide for the needs of people in those areas. Those in power would cater to the population masses, and everyone else would be SOL. Under the EC system, politicians have to consider places like WV, which would never get a second thought under a pure popular vote.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:40 PM
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I think it's a brilliant system.
It didn't look that way to me last night, when Bush had a three-point plurality and an outright majority of the popular vote, yet stood a very real chance of losing the electoral vote.

Whoever created the electoral college never foresaw a tightly divided country, where presidential elections hinged on a handful of swing states, the vote of which could be artificially altered by outside-financed GOTV machines.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:42 PM
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Under the EC system, politicians have to consider places like WV, which would never get a second thought under a pure popular vote.
What about states like Indiana, Wyoming and Delaware? Does anyone cater to them during presidential elections?
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Old 11-03-04, 10:44 PM
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Does anyone have a map by state of where each of the candidates stopped and how many times they did so? Just curious as to what it would show...
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Old 11-03-04, 10:47 PM
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Originally posted by Dead
Essentially, their votes wouldn't count and politicians would have no interest or incentive to protect the rights and provide for the needs of people in those areas. Those in power would cater to the population masses, and everyone else would be SOL. Under the EC system, politicians have to consider places like WV, which would never get a second thought under a pure popular vote.
That's assuming that the population masses vote all in one direction. They don't. And even if they leaned in one direction, there are MORE smaller states than big ones, and as can be seen in this election, their collective populations outnumbered the fewer large states. So, by popular vote, their interests WERE represented, both by individual vote AND the result.
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Old 11-03-04, 10:54 PM
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I've thought that all along. All we hear about is the importance of the "battleground" states.

How would it be different if we went to an all-popular vote? Bush still would have won guys...
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Old 11-03-04, 10:58 PM
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Originally posted by Draven
I've thought that all along. All we hear about is the importance of the "battleground" states.

How would it be different if we went to an all-popular vote? Bush still would have won guys...
Oh, no one's questioning that. But to me, this EC system has always been puzzling to me and never made sense. I keep hearing the standard line that it represents the rural interests. But I don't see how the individual vote does not.
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