Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren said Monday that it is time to change the rules for electing a president.
During an appearance at a Mississippi town hall event with CNN, the Massachusetts senator joined the parade of leftist voices calling for the abolition of the Electoral College.
“Come a general election, presidential candidates don’t come to places like Mississippi, they also don’t come to places like California or Massachusetts, because we’re not the battleground states,” Warren said, according to CNN.
“My view is that every vote matters, and the way we can make that happen is that we can have national voting and that means get rid of the Electoral College,” she said.
2020 Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren calls for abolishing the Electoral College and moving to a national popular vote: “Every vote matters” #WarrenTownHall https://t.co/pPFMVywETf pic.twitter.com/yy0J0HgAjc
— CNN (@CNN) March 19, 2019
The Electoral College was created when the Constitution was drawn up in 1787. It assigns states a given number of electors based on population.
In a presidential election, voters choose electors pledged to vote for one of the candidates.
Calls to eliminate the Electoral College emerged after President Donald Trump’s 2016 victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton.
Clinton received 65,853,516 votes against 62,984,825 for Trump, according to the Federal Election Commission — roughly a 2.9 million popular vote edge.
However, those totals mask the fact that two states alone vastly increased Clinton’s totals. In California, Clinton topped Trump 8.75 million votes to 4.48 million votes. In New York, Clinton received 4.55 million votes against 2.82 million for Trump.
Her 4.27 million vote margin in California and her 1.73 million vote margin in New York gave the former secretary of state a 6 million vote margin over Trump in those two states. That margin means that in the other 48 states, Clinton trailed Trump by 3.1 million votes.
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., has called for a “reassessment” of the Electoral College, according to The Hill. High-profile leftists from Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York to former ESPN host Jemele Hill have also trashed the Electoral College.
Nah. People who live in cities that truly represent the diversity of America should set the course. The electoral college is outdated, and was there to preserve slavery. We need to move on. https://t.co/vRykoYcPle
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) March 18, 2019
“Under a national popular vote, the 38 non-battleground states long ignored by presidential campaigns will be powerful again, because no candidate can win 270 electoral votes and the White House without also winning the popular vote across all 50 states and the District of Columbia,” said John Koza, chairman of National Popular Vote, according to The Hill.
Tara Ross, author of “The Indispensable Electoral College: How the Founders’ Plan Saves Our Country from Mob Rule,” countered that argument in an Op-Ed for Inside Sources.
“First, small to mid-size states can never receive equal treatment under a national popular vote system,” Ross wrote. “How can they? Candidates have limited time and resources. They will not work to build support across state and regional lines without an Electoral College to force the subject.
“Consider that Hillary Clinton won fully 20 percent of her individual votes from only two states: New York and California. The mistake cost her the election. But without the Electoral College, she would be rewarded for such behavior, and candidates would be sure to double down on the strategy. New Hampshire, Wyoming and other small-population states would easily be lost in the shuffle.”
“Again and again, the Founders went to great lengths to thwart blind majority rule, not wanting important national decisions to be driven by unbridled public emotion, populist demagoguery, or the passions of the mob ” https://t.co/fKsvNK43Es
— Michael A. Maynard (@mmaynard119) March 19, 2019
Trump has said he still would have beaten Clinton under a national popular vote system.
“The popular vote would be much easier to win if you were campaigning on it,” the president told The Associated Press in October. “You know, it’s like running the 100-yard dash versus a 10-mile run. You train differently. Nobody explained that to Hillary Clinton, by the way.”
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