Thursday, March 27, 2008

Here we go again

Let's abolish the electoral college. Senator Ben Nelson of Florida makes this proposal AGAIN. You might notice that no one from Wyoming, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Montana or any other low population state ever makes this proposal. Hmmm, we wonder why that is? Maybe because they have no interest in giving up their position in electing the President in lieu of allowing the election to be decided by California, Illinois, Texas, Florida and a few other large states.

The United States is not a democracy it is a democratic republic. Politicians seem to be frequently uneducated and ignorant of the difference. If we were a democracy then majority rule would be the case, but as a democratic republic we have representatives that stand between the people and the final determination of law. This model has served us well for 200 plus years and any move to change it is short sighted.

Direct democracy does not allow for the cooling of passions. The bicameral legislature is the best example of this. The House will react to any impassioned issue with immediacy and very little thought to the long term consequences. The Senate has the duty to temper the House by looking to the longer term effects. One might argue that this is not effective, but history proves that it is a better system than allowing tempers to rule the day.

It is important to remember that this is just political grandstanding. The only way to eliminate the electoral college is through a constitutional amendment, and it is highly unlikely the Senate would ever pass such an amendment, and it is beyond credibility to imagine that the half of the states who would lose influence would ever ratify.

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