MoveOn Says Toss the Electoral College — Because They Want to Win Elections the Easy Way

By David Mills Published on November 19, 2017

Would you like to be governed by the big cities on both coasts plus Chicago and Detroit? Cities that can’t manage their own affairs very well? I didn’t think so.

MoveOn’s members do. The lefty activist group hosts a petition to “Abolish the Electoral College.” It demands “presidential elections based on popular vote. One person one vote to determine the one leader who is supposed to answer to all the people of the country.” It claims, as I write, 651,408 signers.

The Democrats’ Big Advantage

Democrats already have a big advantage even with the electoral college. As I wrote in May about Hillary Clinton’s astonishing ability to lose an election she had in the bag, the Democratic candidate starts knowing he’ll get almost one-third of the electoral college votes he needs. He gets them just by winning California and New York’s 84 votes. As he will.

He’ll also win Illinois, New England and the Pacific Northwest. That adds 48. He’s up to half of what he needs without breaking a sweat or spending a dime.

Normally safely Democratic Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin add 46. That’s 198 of the 270 he needs. Democratic-moving Florida and Virginia add 42. That makes 240.

What does the Republican have? 157 votes, if we take the states that voted Republican since 2000. Not nothing, but not 198 to 240 either.

You have to work hard to lose with an advantage like that. Or do stupid things, like not visit Wisconsin. Or pull some cheap tricks, like cheat Bernie Sanders and alienate his supporters. Here’s another good one: present yourself as a defender of the oppressed while taking vast amounts of money from the people they think oppress them.

Or insult people who might vote for you if you didn’t look down on them. Like calling them “a basket of deplorables. … Racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic, you name it.” Not a smart move, Hillary.

If the election were a 100 meter dash, the Democrat would start about 15 meters ahead of the Republican. He could lose, if he falls down or pulls a muscle or stops to answer his phone. Otherwise he wins.

Here’s the explanation: “The Electoral College has outlasted its usefulness,” they say.

It is part of the constitution, written when communication was by pony express. Voters currently living and voting in a “red” or “blue” state are disenfranchised, because their vote doesn’t matter. Eliminating the electoral college means: no “swing” states getting all the attention and all the campaign stops and all the empty campaign promises. The electoral members are selected by the two main political parties, Republican and Democrat, disenfranchising all other voters, independent, Libertarian, etc. End it now.

The Real Result

I think we know why they want to abolish the electoral college: Because it prevents Democrats from winning every presidential election. Maybe I’m being unfair, but I don’t remember liberals showing much interest in the subject after Barack Obama’s two victories.

I don’t remember them being too annoyed with the electoral college after George Bush’s second election. But a Republican was elected, you object. Yes, but the Democrat came closer to winning the electoral college than he did the popular vote. Just 60,000 people in Ohio vote from him rather than Bush, he’s president, even losing the popular vote by almost 3 million votes.

So why do they want to abolish the electoral college, which favors them already? To make sure the country elects a Democrat. If you want the details, read my Clinton Won the Popular Vote, Yeah — Because of California. Make sure as far as politically possible, I mean, because this party lost an election it should have won the way water runs downhill.

The short version: Clinton won the popular vote by 2.86 million votes. She got all of those and way more — almost 4.3 million — in California. One state. By itself. 1.6 million of those came in Los Angeles county alone.

Without California, one state out of fifty, Clinton loses the popular vote by 1.4 million votes. Without California and New York, just two states out of fifty, she loses it by almost 3 million votes. Drop Illinois and she loses by almost 4 million votes. Add the other reliable Democratic states and she gets farther and farther behind. 

Almost forgot those midwestern cities. Chicago, for example, preferred Clinton to Trump by about 768,000 votes. That’s about one-quarter of her national advantage.

MoveOn’s Very Bad Argument

That’s why MoveOn’s petitioners want the president elected by a simple majority. Their argument doesn’t make a lot of sense. It rejects the electoral college because the people who created it used the technology of the time to send mail. (The Pony Express wasn’t created for another 75 years, but we’ll leave out that bit of historical ignorance.) Say what? Would the petition’s writer say that Plato and Aristotle hadn’t thought deeply about politics because they didn’t wear pants? Would they laugh at Abraham Lincoln because he didn’t write the Gettysburg Address on a Macbook Air?

It doesn’t get better. Voters in solidly Democratic or Republican states “are disenfranchised, because their vote doesn’t matter.” But of course their votes matter. They matter in giving each candidate the base he needs to win the election. OK, the vote of a guy in a swing state like Ohio might be (at a guess) .0000003% more likely to change the election than the vote of a guy in Texas or California. That doesn’t enfranchise him or disenfranchise his peers in solid Red or Blue states.

This is the funny one: “Eliminating the electoral college means: no ‘swing’ states getting all the attention and all the campaign stops and all the empty campaign promises.” Soooooo … their votes count because they get “empty campaign promises”? That’s a good thing? 

Anyway, even without the electoral college, the candidates will still go to the swing states more than the others. Because that’s where the swing voters are

Maybe the easiest way to counter the petition is this: Does anyone outside the leftwing of the Democratic party want to be ruled by the state that re-elects Nancy Pelosi and Maxine Waters, treated Harvey Weinstein as a god, and four times elected a governor named Moonbeam? 

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