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January 23, 2013 9:36 PM   Subscribe

Virginia moves ahead with its attempt to change its winner-takes-all method of apportioning electoral votes. The bill would apportion electors by congressional district to the candidate who wins each of the state's 11 districts. The candidate who carries a majority of the districts would also win the two electors not tied to congressional districts. Although Barack Obama won all of Virginia's electoral votes in 2012, he would have only won four of the nine votes under this plan.
posted by cherrybounce (15 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason: This is pretty thin for an important topic, plus a mistake in the numbers... Maybe try again with something more in-depth? -- taz



 
Not four OF nine. Obama would have won four electoral votes TO Romney's nine.

Fucking gerrymandering.
posted by supercres at 9:41 PM on January 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I can see a time when Republican presidential candidates win every election, despite having 1% to 5% less of the popular vote than Democrats. It sucks.
posted by Dee Xtrovert at 9:48 PM on January 23, 2013


Maine and Nebraska already use this system, and I think it would be pretty cool. But expect Democrats to hate it and argue against it. If it were in effect in New York, Illinois, and California, the Democrats would lose a lot of electoral votes. (Likewise for the Republicans in Texas and Florida, but not so many.)
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 9:49 PM on January 23, 2013


Gerrymandering assholes.

That's all I've got.
posted by barnacles at 9:50 PM on January 23, 2013


A national popular vote would be even cooler!
posted by silby at 9:50 PM on January 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


Of course, when the guy who actually loses the popular vote wins the electoral vote, that's American Democracy at Its Bestâ„¢.
posted by scody at 9:50 PM on January 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I have a hard time understanding people like this. People in my circle of existence don't behave like this, even my loony FIL. Where do they come from? Why do they exist? How do they sleep at night? Damn!
posted by Brocktoon at 9:52 PM on January 23, 2013


There's a bill out there which already has some support that would basically put all states on this system. The most interesting thing about their approach is that states sign on to it but it doesn't go into effect until the required number of states (actually states with a total number of votes) have also signed on.
posted by sophist at 9:52 PM on January 23, 2013


"Fucking gerrymandering."

This is actually worse than gerrymandering, really.

And fuck Republicans.
posted by bardic at 9:55 PM on January 23, 2013


How is this not a violation of the equal protection clause? Any system that turns a 4% advantage in the popular vote into a 2 to 1 loss in the electoral college pretty much has to be a violation of the 14th amendment right?
posted by Grimgrin at 9:56 PM on January 23, 2013


I can see a time when Republican presidential candidates win every election, despite having 1% to 5% less of the popular vote than Democrats.

By 2016, the gap between the parties will be well over 5% and by 2020 probably over 10%, with the gap widening more and more over the next generation. They're playing a Winner Take All game for control of the US Government and will eventually have to totally abandon any kind of representative democracy to hold power. But I think most of them have no problem with that.
posted by evilmidnightbomberwhatbombsatmidnight at 9:59 PM on January 23, 2013


Sen. Charles W. "Bill" Carrico, R-Grayson, said the change is necessary because Virginia's populous, urbanized areas such as the Washington, D.C., suburbs and Hampton Roads can outvote rural regions such as his, rendering their will irrelevant.

Yes, it's very inconvenient that urban areas get more votes by dint of the sheer number of people living there. *eyeroll*

I totally get the idea of regional representation, and I don't want to do away with the Senate or anything, but this is ridiculous. The right way to handle get every vote to count in Presidential elections is to sign on to the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact.

Carrico's solution instead makes votes cast by rural voters count more than votes cast by urban voters (at least, as long as gerrymandering favoring rural areas lasts)... even more than the system already favors rural votes, which is probably enough if not more than enough.

And I'm sure it's just a coincidence many of those rural voters are also Republican, and has nothing to do with whether Carrico may or may not be a soulless republican satanist hack.

(Also: doesn't DC get screwed on elector votes since it doesn't get the +2 a state normally does? If so, boo hoo that it gets some weight out of, again, the sheer number of voters living there.)


posted by weston at 9:59 PM on January 23, 2013


The whole point of the electoral college is to make the system less democratic, by interposing a "college" of people who will interfere if the popular vote chooses someone unsuitable. It has no purpose nowadays, and should be discarded.
posted by Joe in Australia at 10:00 PM on January 23, 2013


sophist: that bill has a different effect. It takes a look at who won the popular vote, and then awards that person all the participating states' electoral votes. It wouldn't be possible, under that scheme, to win the Electoral College but lose the popular vote.

This bill, however, has a different effect. Since VA doesn't draw districts strictly based on population size, some districts will have many more people in them than others. It would be pretty easy for the state's electoral votes to go against the state's popular vote, as evidenced by looking at the last election. Another way of looking at it is that a rural VA vote would count x2.25 times an urban VA vote.

What VA used to do is a state version of what the National Popular Vote is proposing. What they're trying to do is a state version of how the Electoral College currently operates. If you're in favor of the National Popular Vote movement, then VA is taking a step back.
posted by sbutler at 10:01 PM on January 23, 2013


"Sen. Charles W. "Bill" Carrico, R-Grayson, said the change is necessary because Virginia's populous, urbanized areas such as the Washington, D.C., suburbs and Hampton Roads can outvote rural regions such as his, rendering their will irrelevant."
That's because, you fucking goddamned dumb motherfucking dipshit, PEOPLE get votes, not REGIONS.

If you want regions, you get the fucking Senate. THAT IS IT. You goddamned white minority are trying so hard to retain the vestiges of your power. I can't wait til it's over.

PS I'm a big fat white dude that comes from a rural area and has a bone fide redneck dad who grew up during segregation in Oklahoma. I can say that about white people, so don't you go gettin' all offended when I point this out about old white males.
posted by symbioid at 10:03 PM on January 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


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