The National Popular Vote Compact: Legally Bypassing the Electoral College

The National Popular Vote Compact is an agreement between state governors to award all the electoral votes in their states to the Presidential candidate who receives the majority of the popular vote. This compact has been in the making since the first years of this century, but has gained momentum since the 2016 POTUS result placed DJT in the Oval Office despite his having [theoretically] lost the popular vote by [supposedly] one point five million votes.

Our Constitution gives state governors complete freedom in deciding how to direct their electors to vote … so this Compact is a legal end run around the principles of representative democracy. Why did the Founders allow this? Could it be they never foresaw an era where the nation would be divided between two widely differing political points of view? Could it be they never foresaw that one party would pack its voter rolls with illegals, dead people, and duplicate voters so as to [always] win the popular vote? Did they not conceive of gerrymandering, a technique used by both political parties to rig the popular vote in various districts across the nation?

I’d venture the Founders were very well aware of diverging points of view … they’d just defeated Loyalists / Royalists to establish an independent nation. But these same men also believed they were laying the foundation for a nation populated by moral, honest, God-fearing citizens, who would not be motivated to try to steal elections.

Our nation’s popular vote now splits roughly 50/50 between an urban [progressive / socialist / everyone here is a voter] bloc and a more traditional, free-market [walls work] bloc who live outside of the major MSAs. The left-of-center voters are further concentrated in the northeast, the far west, and the southwest. Click this link for a map that shows the 2016 results district-by-district:

https://www.citylab.com/equity/2017/04/is-this-the-ultimate-2016-presidential-election-map/521622/

So is the National Popular Vote Compact an idea whose time has come? Consider that Think Progress, Move On dot org, and the Democratic Socialists of America are yuuge supporters … as is Eric Holder [yep, that Eric Holder, another Barky Boy who won’t go away]. Mark Levin among other commentators has suggested that once [deliberate choice of word] the NPVC is joined by sufficient states to control 270 electors, there will never be another President elected who does NOT speak for urbanites and undocumented Democrats. It goes without saying that the push to reach the 270 vote goal before year 2020 is massive.

Here are two articles, one from November 7, 2016 [one day before the 2016 POTUS election … isn’t that a coincidence] about Andrew Cuomo adding NY state to the Compact … and another showing how close the Compact is to reaching the magic 270 figure as of this month. I encourage you to look closely at the second article, and see where support for this Compact is coming from.

https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/governor-cuomo-signs-legislation-securing-new-york-states-place-national-popular-vote-compact

https://www.nationalpopularvote.com/state-status

Ongoing pro-Compact news and opinion can be found on the following website, which is updated frequently [and worthy of a bookmark]:

https://www.270towin.com/

— Safespace —

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16 Responses to The National Popular Vote Compact: Legally Bypassing the Electoral College

  1. The Crawfish says:

    No, it is not legal. If the voters of a state vote for Candidate A, they are technically voting for state electors for Candidate A. If Candidate A wins the state, but Candidate B gets more votes nationally, and the Governor awards the state electors to Candidate B, then the people of the state who voted for Candidate A have been disenfranchised. Their candidate legally won the state, but their votes now do not count. That will not pass muster with SCOTUS.

    • SafeSpace says:

      Crawfish: I agree, provided that SCOTUS sees a Trump-installed replacement for GInzborg before they consider this case. The Compact can lead to taxation without representation, and last time that was pulled around here, there was an armed rebellion.

    • “The bottom line is that the electors from those states who cast their ballot for the nationwide vote winner are completely accountable (to the extent that independent agents are ever accountable to anyone) to the people of those states. The National Popular Vote states aren’t delegating their Electoral College votes to voters outside the state; they have made a policy choice about the substantive intelligible criteria (i.e., national popularity) that they want to use to make their selection of electors. There is nothing in Article II (or elsewhere in the Constitution) that prevents them from making the decision that, in the Twenty-First Century, national voter popularity is a (or perhaps the) crucial factor in worthiness for the office of the President.”
      – Vikram David Amar – professor and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the UC Davis School of Law. Before becoming a professor, he clerked for Judge William A. Norris of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and for Justice Harry Blackmun at the Supreme Court of the United States.

  2. BrianR says:

    This endless bleating by leftists about the Electoral College is ignorant and infantile. Evidently they don’t know, or don’t care, that the Founders rightfully feared direct democracy. They considered it mob rule, no different from a lynch mob. It’s three foxes and a chicken voting on what’s for dinner.

    That’s exactly why they created the system under which we live, which is a republic, not a “democracy”.

    If leftists want to abolish the EC, all they have to do is amend the Constitution. Easy-peazy, right? But they know they don’t have the votes for that, so they try to cheat their way around it, just like the spoiled, bratty little children they are.

    https://theviewfromtheisland.com/2016/12/08/baseball-and-the-electoral-college/

    Further, I think that if some state ever tries to actually implement this “pact” it will be immediately challenged as to its constitutionality and will fail to survive that challenge.

    The Constitution clearly states that each state shall elect its own EC delegates, but the de facto effect of this pact is to allow residents of other states to determine the outcome of an election within that state. I don’t see how that survives a legal challenge.

    • SafeSpace says:

      Brian: the author of the “Baseball” piece makes a strong point when he suggests that voters, who usually sit at home on voting day because they “know” their state “always” goes Dem or GOP, would turn out under a plebiscite system where every individual citizen’s vote truly makes a difference.

    • There is nothing in the Constitution that prevents states from making the decision now that winning the national popular vote is required to win the Electoral College and the presidency.

      Unable to agree on any particular method for selecting presidential electors, the Founding Fathers left the choice of method exclusively to the states in Article II, Section 1
      “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors….”
      The U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly characterized the authority of the state legislatures over the manner of awarding their electoral votes as “plenary” and “exclusive.”

      In the nation’s first presidential election in 1789 and second election in 1792, the states employed a wide variety of methods for choosing presidential electors, including
      ● appointment of the state’s presidential electors by the Governor and his Council,
      ● appointment by both houses of the state legislature,
      ● popular election using special single-member presidential-elector districts,
      ● popular election using counties as presidential-elector districts,
      ● popular election using congressional districts,
      ● popular election using multi-member regional districts,
      ● combinations of popular election and legislative choice,
      ● appointment of the state’s presidential electors by the Governor and his Council combined with the state legislature, and
      ● statewide popular election.

      The current winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes is not in the U.S. Constitution. It was not debated at the Constitutional Convention. It is not mentioned in the Federalist Papers. It was not the Founders’ choice. It was used by only three states in 1789, and all three of them repealed it by 1800. It is not entitled to any special deference based on history or the historical meaning of the words in the U.S. Constitution. The actions taken by the Founding Fathers make it clear that they never gave their imprimatur to the winner-take-all method. The winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes only became predominant by 1880 — almost a century after the U.S. Constitution was written, after the states adopted it, one-by-one, in order to maximize the power of the party in power in each state.

      State winner-take-all laws were not enacted by the leading men of those states to give fair play to the will of the people

      The constitutional wording does not encourage, discourage, require, or prohibit the use of any particular method for awarding a state’s electoral votes.

      As a result of changes in state laws enacted since 1789, the people have the right to vote for presidential electors in 100% of the states, there are no property requirements for voting in any state, and the state-by-state winner-take-all method is used by 48 of the 50 states. States can, and have, changed their method of awarding electoral votes over the years. Maine (in 1969) and Nebraska (in 1992) chose not to have winner-take-all laws

      • Deserttrek says:

        Yes the electors can cast their vote for whom they see fit, regardless of why they were elected electors
        And yes the states can apportion the electors based on almost any method

        I don;t see this scheme as being Constitutional as it does violate one man one vote

        • It IS one person, one vote.

          Under National Popular Vote, every voter, everywhere, for every candidate, would be politically relevant and equal in every presidential election. Every vote would matter equally in the state counts and national count.

  3. Uriel says:

    And let’s not forget gentlemen that we now have a House of Representatives taken hostage for socialist views that has already approved a bill (which we pray gets vetoed but could end up back on the plate if a Dem is voted into the Oval Office which opens the borders and allows ANYONE from ANYWHERE the right to vote in our elections from city to presidential elections.

  4. Deserttrek says:

    A reference to the Constitution please

    Thanks

  5. whitetop says:

    We don’t know how many votes for Hillary were by illegals, vote harvesting, thuggery, or other illegal means. Obviously our founding fathers anticipated a Hillary Clinton in the future so they did all they could to make the elections fair and meaningful.

  6. vonmesser says:

    Probably gonna lose at the Supreme level. I think electors will be required to vote the way their state votes. The Dems will panic over this when Trump wins next time by a majority all around.

  7. Dan Bullard says:

    So what happens if in 2020 Trump wins the Popular Vote but not the electoral votes under the old system? Will the citizens revolt and murder their own politicians?