By Thomas Mitchell
Democratic lawmakers in Carson City are at it again, bound and determined to give your presidential ballots to the voters of California and New York.Two years ago — after Donald Trump won the Electoral College vote by 304 to 227, though Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by 2.9 million individual votes — a bill was introduced that would have had Nevada join in something called the “Agreement Among the States to Elect the President by National Popular Vote.” Instead of awarding Nevada’s six electoral votes — one for each representative and senator in Congress — according to how Nevadans vote, those six electoral votes would be awarded to the president and vice president team that wins the popular vote nationally.
This essentially cuts the value of Nevada’s votes from six to four, since the votes nationwide would be proportional to population and exclude the power of our two senators, thus diluting our voting power.
Backers say the compact would become a reality if it is adopted by states possessing a combined 270 electoral votes, or a majority of the 538 electoral votes.
Fortunately, the bill went nowhere then. But a group of Democratic lawmakers have dragged its carcass out of the slag heap and dumped it out as It is being discussed this week.
A similar bill was passed in Colorado this past week, giving the proposal 181 electoral votes, just 89 votes short of becoming binding.
The Founders established the nation on a federalist system, not a democracy. Certain enumerated powers were assigned to the federal government while the rest were reserved to the people and the sovereign states. The sovereignty of the states was so important that U.S. senators — until 1913’s 17th Amendment — were chosen by state Legislatures, not directly by the voters. That is also why the Electoral College was created to give added weight to smaller states.
Speaking of senators, one of the supporters of the National Popular Vote effort in 2017 was Nevada’s former senior Democratic Sen. Harry Reid.
“I believe that focusing on the Electoral College is important no matter how you do it, because what’s happened this decade, these last several elections, where we have clearly two elections, the Gore election and this election. In this election Hillary Clinton will wind up getting almost 3 million votes more than Trump. It’s time the system goes away. It is very undemocratic,” Reid said in an interview.
Pay no attention to the fact Reid served in the Senate for 30 years, where each state gets two votes no matter the size of its population.
A National Popular Vote bill did pass the Nevada Legislature back in 2009 on a strictly party line vote with 27 Democrats supporting it, all 14 Republicans opposing and one Democrat absent.
With Democrat majorities in both the state Senate and Assembly this year there is imminent danger that this constitutionally questionable usurpation of the power of Nevada voters could pass. We urge everyone to contact your lawmakers and express your ardent opposition to this
atrocity. Thomas Mitchell is a former newspaper editor who now writes conservative/libertarian columns for weekly papers in Nevada. You may
email Mitchell at email@example.com. He blogs at http://4thst8.wordpress.com/.