Senator and 2020 presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren announced on Monday that if she won the White House, one of her first acts would be to get rid of the Electoral College and make it so that the popular vote would decide who wins in the future.
She tweeted, “My goal is to get elected – but I plan to be the last American president to be elected by the Electoral College. I want my second term to be elected by direct vote.”
In the attached video clip, she added, “Call me old fashioned, but I think the person who gets the most votes should win.”
Except, I’m not sure the term “old fashioned” is the right choice of wording. After all, wouldn’t the Founding Fathers’ Constitution and the creation of the Electoral College be a bit more “old fashioned” than her decidedly progressive ideas?
As James Madison put it, the Electoral College was put in place to avoid the “tyranny of the majority,” which just what the Democrats think they have achieved. According to them, they have the majority. And yet many don’t believe they can win against the GOP white working-class votes in midwestern swing states like Wisconsin anymore. So if they could just find a way to put themselves in control, then all would be fair.
In their minds, their choices are to either get rid of the Electoral College or possibly be banned from the White House for years to come. That is unless something drastic like a recession happens.
The only problem is that this not so little thing called the Constitution is standing in their way.
According to a poll earlier this year, most of the mainstream media and about 60 percent of Democrats believe that abolishing the Electoral College should happen. It is thought, most of this comes from the fact that Hillary Clinton had the popular vote in 2016 and still lost the presidency, which has happened twice for Dems in the last 20 years.
The New York Times has said the Electoral College is an “antiquated mechanism.” The Washington Post compared it to a casino game of chance, and Times magazine noted that it was created to protect slavery.
But short of a constitutional amendment, there is really only one way to undo the Electoral College. It is called the National Popular Vote movement. This is a pact between states that says their electoral votes will be given to the winner of the national popular vote, regardless of who won in that actual state. The compact needs a combination of states with at least 270 electoral votes to pledge themselves to this cause. At present, there are 16 states who have signed the deal, adding up to 196 electoral votes.
So, where do the other 74 votes come from?
As you can imagine, all 16 states are pretty much solid blue, except for Colorado, which is nearly there. It is unlikely that swing states like Wisconsin will add their name to the list for fear they would lose the special treatment of having national attention placed on them every four years. Similarly, there is no way that GOP red states will sign and block themselves out of getting their candidate in the White House.
It seems the only way to add more names to the list would be if Republicans ended up winning the popular vote, and that has only happened once in the last 30 years. However, if that happened, you would be sure to see how many Democrat states could remove their names before Republicans could add theirs.
According to Warren, the popular vote means “every vote counts.” But really, it’s just the opposite. With the Electoral College being abolished, sparsely populated states like Wyoming and even the early voting state of Iowa would essentially lose their vote altogether. California and New York, with the largest populations, would essentially rule the nation.
That is precisely what Warren wants. It’s no secret the largest cities in the nation are solid blue, and as they grow, the Democrats’ reach only expands, allowing the rest of the country to literally be ignored.
And not just when it comes to elections. As historian Allen Guelzo said, once the Electoral College goes, “there would be no sense in having a Senate, and eventually, no sense in even having states, except as administrative departments of the central government.”
This is the tyranny of the majority: to overthrow our Constitution.