Follow by Email

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Why one vote in Utah is worth three votes in Maryland


     I have blogged before about the craziness of the Electoral College in Presidential elections.   I recently came across an Associated Press report that showed how this system penalizes voters in Maryland:

     " A statistical analysis of the state-by-state voting-eligible population by The Associated Press shows that Wyoming has 139,000 eligible voters - those 18 and over, U.S. citizens and non-felons - for every presidential elector chosen in the state.....The nine battleground states where Romney and Barack Obama are spending a lot of time and money - Ohio, Florida, Virginia, Colorado, New Hampshire, Iowa, Nevada, North Carolina and Wisconsin - have 44.1 million people eligible to vote. That's only 20.7 percent of the nation's 212.6 million eligible voters. So nearly four of five eligible voters are pretty much being ignored by the two campaigns."
     
      "When you combine voter-to-elector comparisons and battleground state populations, there are clear winners and losers in the upcoming election. More than half the nation's eligible voters live in states that are losers in both categories. Their states are not closely contested and have above-average ratios of voters to electors. This is true for people in 14 states with 51 percent of the nation's eligible voters: California, New York, Texas, Illinois, Michigan, Georgia, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Indiana, Tennessee, Missouri, Maryland, Louisiana and Kentucky. Their votes count the least.  The biggest winners in the system, those whose votes count the most, live in just four states: Colorado, New Hampshire, Iowa and Nevada. They have low voter-to-elector ratios and are in battleground states. Only 4 percent of the nation's eligible voters - 1 in 25 - live in those states."

      " Adding to this, most states have an all-or-nothing approach to the Electoral College. A candidate can win a state by just a handful of votes but get all the electors. That happened in 2000, when George W. Bush, after much dispute, won Florida by 537 votes out of about 6 million and got all 27 electoral votes. He won the presidential election but lost the national popular vote that year.  That election led some states to sign a compact promising to give their electoral votes to the national popular vote winner. But that compact would go into effect only if and when states with the 270 majority of electoral votes signed on. So far nine states (including Maryland) with 132 electoral votes have signed, all predominantly Democratic states. Because of the 2000 election, conservatives and Republicans tend to feel that changing the Electoral College would hurt them, George Mason's McDonald said, and after their big victories in 2010, the popular vote compact movement stalled. But that analysis may not necessarily be true, he added. McDonald said before recent opinion polls started to break for Obama there seemed to be a possibility that he could win the electoral vote and lose the popular vote because of weak turnout - but still enough to win - in traditionally Democratic states like New York and California."

   


 


No comments: