Thank you for the opportunity to respond to an issue of growing concern and confusion. First, the recent party primary elections produced abysmal turnout — 10 percent of the Democrats voted while less than 25 percent of Republicans came out to help choose its party’s candidate. That alone is cause for concern. However it is even more alarming when I consider the fact that in November, a majority of those who do choose to vote on Election Day may find themselves casting meaningless votes.
“Meaningless” in the sense that in a very real scenario, Louisiana may be forced to delegate all of its eight Electoral College votes to a candidate who doesn’t even get a majority of the vote in Louisiana, much less throughout the country. That’s right! It doesn’t matter who gets the most votes on Election Day, it simply matters who gets the most Electoral College votes.
Remember what happened in 2000? George Bush won the state of Florida by 537 votes, thus giving all 25 of that state’s Electoral College votes and the presidency was awarded to him even though he didn’t receive the most votes across the country. Four years later, had the state of Ohio voted for John Kerry instead of Bush, Kerry would have been declared president even though Bush had a few million more votes nationwide. And don’t forget the third-party candidacy of Ross Perot, which almost threw the election into turmoil, which would have forced the U.S. House of Representatives to choose our president!
Under the current system, as few as a dozen states can determine who the president of the United States will be based on their Electoral College clout. Given these truly alarming facts, I think it is time Louisiana’s Legislature looked at the National Popular Vote Initiative —- whoever gets the most votes nationwide should be elected president. Simple enough?
public relations consultant