Growing support to change Electoral College

Growing Support To Replace Electoral College

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- When every ballot nationwide is counted in the presidential race, it's likely Hillary Clinton will have won the popular vote. So there is growing support to change the Electoral College.

As of Friday evening, Clinton has nearly 500,000 more votes than Donald Trump, and that number could rise. However, the popular vote is not used to pick the president in the U.S.

Patrick Rosenstiel, senior consultant with NationalPopularVote.com, wants to change that.

"I've never seen the kind of energy that we're seeing today," Rosenstiel said.

His group encourages state legislatures to pass the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, which binds state to award their Electoral College votes not to the winner of the individual state, but instead to the candidate who wins the nationwide popular vote.

So far, nearly a dozen states have passed Rosenstiel's measure. New York is among them. Just before the 2016 general election, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill to extend the state's compact.

"Every presidential election, a voter in Buffalo, New York is not as important as a voter in Boca Raton, Florida," Rosenstiel said. "And that's why we ought make this change."

Rosenstiel says the change should happen through the compact and not an amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which would be much more difficult to accomplish.

A poll from Pew showed more than 60% of Americans support one person, one vote as opposed to the Electoral College model.

"We always knew that voters like this idea," Rosenstiel said. "Now they're demanding change, and we believe a number of state legislators could and hopefully will act in a non-partisan fashion to fix this problem."

The support apparently extends to the President-elect, as well. In 2012, Donald Trump thought Mitt Romney was going to win the popular vote but lose due to the Electoral College. Trump wrote on Twitter, "Let's fight like hell and stop this great and disgusting injustice! The world is laughing at us."

 

 

Trump advisers Newt Gingrich, Dr. Ben Carson and others have also made public comments supporting a system in which the candidate with the most votes nationwide would win the office.

Rosenstiel was quick to point out that Americans should do as Hillary Clinton, President Barack Obama and many others have suggested, and accept the results of the 2016 election. He just wants to make sure the next contest ensures the votes of all Americans will be counted equally.

"Far too many Americans are left on the political sidelines," he said.


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