It’s been rather well covered this month that the Democrats find the Electoral College system to be unfair. Very unfair, very unfair they say, sounding much like Donald Trump as they do so.
But as much as they whine, they will take no meaningful steps to overturn the Electoral College where they have the power to do so. Here’s why.
The Democrats claim the Electoral College is unfair, based on the unsupported assertion that the direct popular vote is the only valid way to win. They also falsely claim it was created to support slavery, even though the real reason it was created, was to give the small states a reason to join a union dominated by large states. But sure, for the sake of argument, we’ll go with their idea that direct popular vote is the only fair way to go.
Back when slavery was actually an ongoing concern in America, the free states didn’t create a compact banning slavery if and only if the south also banned slavery. They didn’t moan that it would be ‘unfair’. They just did it, banning slavery within their jurisdictions, because it was the right thing to do!
So why don’t the Democrats do the same thing with the popular vote? Right now, California and New York could pass laws ensuring that after every election, the national popular vote winner will determine which slate of electors wins in their states. But they haven’t, and they won’t.
They’ll claim it’s because the states run by Republicans won’t do the same thing, and therefore their changes can only elect a Republican, but never a Democrat. So it turns out they’re perfectly fine with “unfairly” electing a Democrat, but not with “unfairly” electing a Republican. This isn’t about fairness at all. This is about partisanship.
The Electoral College is only under attack right now because the Democrats lost the election. If it’d gone the other way, they’d be thrilled. In the 2004 election, George W. Bush defeated John Kerry in the popular vote by 3 million votes. However Democrats attempted to overturn Ohio’s Electoral College slate. Had they somehow succeeded in electing John Kerry, then they would have assured a popular vote loser had won the Presidency. And so it’s not just speculation that they’re fine with that when a Democrat benefits. We have proof from past actions.
When Nancy Pelosi won a Supreme Court case in 2005, she claimed it’s “as if God has spoken,” defending the Court’s authority. However there is no such reverence for the court after the Citizens United case, is there? The Democrats approve or disapprove of institutions only based on the immediate outcomes.
Until the Democrats are willing to change in their backyards first, nothing will change in the Electoral College. And that’s a good thing.
P.S. The Democrats could also rewrite the DNC rules to ensure that the party nominee is chosen by national popular vote. But again, they won’t. Because to the Democrats, “slavery” is fine as long as the Democrat establishment benefits.