Reform or trick?

It’s not too often that the N.Y. Times pays much attention to political maneuvering in the West, but the latest move of California Republicans is getting a big play in the East. Bob Herbert, the N.Y. Times columnist , writes of the most recent so-called Reform of the Presidential Election initiative. This would change the way California’s electoral college votes are allocated. Instead of the winner-take-all system now in use here as well as almost all other states, the new system would give one vote to the winner of each Congressional district with two votes going to the overall state winner. Actually this isn’t a bad idea, and the National League of Women Voters has been supporting a reform or abolishment of the Electoral College for many years. Changing the system in just one large state like California, however, would likely throw 20 or more votes to the Republicans in 2008, while the so-called red states would continue to give Republicans all their Electoral College votes no matter how many people voted for a Democrat. Reform of presidential elections should be a national matter with agreement from all the states to pursue a more equitable way of allocating votes. Civic minded people must insist that all of the issues hidden in “reform” measures be explained clearly to voters before they are asked to decide on them. Transparency in ballot measures is just as important as transparency in government.

All League News