Larry Bradley’s Ezine Number 405
What Is Happening with Election Reform?
What Is Happening with Election Reform?
Consider these population numbers, along with this article (especially the graphic accompanying the article.) The numbers are from the Quick Facts pages for each state from the U.S. Census Bureau. https://www.thenation.com/article/democrats-need-to-get-rid-of-the-electoral-college/
North Dakota 755,393
South Dakota 869,666
Now contrast that total with just one state—California. 39,536,653.
Those figures illustrate an issue we have for our governance that does not bode well for our country. And, candidly, I’m not sure what the answer is. But we need to talk about it.
The issue is that California has more than seven times the total population of the other six states. Yet California has only two Senators in the U.S. Senate, while the six states listed have 12. When the Founders set up the two houses of the legislative branch, I’m not sure they anticipated this level of disparity. They were so focused on preventing tyranny by the majority they overlooked tyranny by the minority.
Adding to the conflict is the fact is that California’s population is significantly urban (although it does have huge amounts of rural landscape with sparse population. Just ask anyone who’s driven from Los Angeles to Las Vegas.) The other states are predominately rural with smaller urban area. And this makes for another significant issue in and of itself, as described in this article. https://www.kansascity.com/opinion/opn-columns-blogs/dave-helling/article224905575.html
These disparities set us up for tyranny by the minority. Clearly, we want an election system that resists both tyranny of the majority and the minority. We want an election and governing system that balances the interests of all. Finding that system begins with a common understanding of what we want vs. what we don’t want.
Eliminating the Electoral College, as proposed in the first link, is not going to happen. The small rural states are going to resist its implementation. But the refusal to acknowledge by the small states their structural advantage is likely to lead to the large population states bypassing the small states with the National Popular Vote Compact, making the small states irrelevant to the Presidential race. This has the potential to lead to greater levels of gridlock, with the House and the Presidency controlled by large population states and the Senate controlled by small population rural states. To avoid this, we recommend the adoption of our proposal for the Electoral College. http://www.thecenterstrikesback.org/three.asp
Would You Help Make Ranked Choice Voting a Reality?
Are you someone who is sick of the contentiousness and gridlock of our politics? Then the following announcements should be of great interest to you. Whether you live in Missouri or not, there is a development at hand that can benefit you. Further, this announcement benefits you no matter where you are on the political spectrum or what political party you may or may not belong to. Please read below to find out how to take advantage of this development.
The development is that two Bills have been introduced in the Missouri House of the Missouri Legislature which would change Missouri election law to allow Ranked Choice Voting (RCV).
27 — EVERY VOTE COUNTS ACT
This bill requires federal, state, and local elections to use the instant runoff ranked choice voting method. https://house.mo.gov/bill.aspx?bill=HB27&year=2019&code=R
28 — RANKED CHOICE VOTING FOR LOCAL ELECTIONS
This bill requires local elections to use the instant runoff ranked choice voting method. https://house.mo.gov/bill.aspx?bill=HB27&year=2019&code=R
In sum, these Bills benefit you because RCV ensures that all elections result in majority, rather than plurality, winners. RCV negates the impact of big dark money in our elections. RCV eliminates the spoiler scenario and lets you vote for your first choice candidate without fear that doing so will allow the candidate you like the least to win. If you want even more details then go to my web site at www.TheCenterStrikesBack.org. This is the type of voting that Maine approved and implemented over the last two years. We need to wise up and follow their lead.
So, let me tell you what you need to do to see these Bills succeed if you live in Missouri. (Next I’ll tell you what to do to see Bills like these succeed if you don’t live in Missouri).
If you live in Missouri, then contact your representatives in the legislature. Call and/or email to tell your House representative you want to be able to vote using RCV. Tell them you want them to co-sponsor and vote for the two Bills above. Tell your State Senator you want them to introduce or co-sponsor a companion Bill in the Missouri Senate. If you have time and are so interested, a hearing on these Bills is anticipated with the House Elections and Elected Officials Committee in Jefferson City on Feb 13, 2019 at 8:00 a.m. I intend to testify at that hearing. Would love to have a room full of people voicing support for RCV. Here is a listing for the members of the MO House. https://www.house.mo.gov/MemberRoster.aspx and the MO Senate https://www.senate.mo.gov/senators-listing/
If you live outside Missouri, then forward this Ezine to your own State Representatives. Ask them why they haven’t introduced legislation like this. Tell them you want to be like Maine and use RCV in your elections. Tell them you want them to introduce the kind of Bill that has been introduced in Missouri. Missouri and Maine are not the only states interested in RCV. Note this article about RCV being implemented in Utah. https://www.sightline.org/2019/02/04/utah-ranked-choice-voting-washington-local-options-bill/ Salinas, KS’ newspaper just published an article recommending RCV for Kansas. http://www.salina.com/news/20190204/kansas-should-adopt-ranked-choice-voting This follows my own OpEd in the Topeka Capital Journal in September. https://www.cjonline.com/opinion/20180915/larry-r-bradley-ranked-choice-voting-is-remedy
And finally, forward this email to everyone on your email list. Let them know this is not a partisan Bill/issue. This is about having better elections. If they live in Missouri, ask them to do what I’m asking you to do as a Missouri resident. If they live outside Missouri, ask them to do what I asked people living outside Missouri to do. The more of us who call and write, the more likely we are to have this pass. And if these Bills pass, then you get all the benefits I listed above.
This is a good deal. RCV is good for everyone. This doesn’t cost you anything. Please help.
See you next time.