Equal Voice Voting solves the vote disparity concern
Does the disparity between the Electoral College and popular vote results matter to you? These two totals should consistently be similar to reflect how the country votes. The National Popular Vote (NPV) bill cannot promise a close correlation. Equal Voice Voting (EVV) can. Check out your state’s 2016 results.
Some “What IF” scenarios for the 2016 election if the NPV bill were in place are provided below. NPV won’t be enacted until enough states are in agreement so their collective electoral votes equal 270 – the number needed by any candidate to win the election.
Vote disparity with Clinton winning the popular vote
Start with the electoral votes of the states who have already agreed to the NPV compact: Hawaii, California, Washington, Illinois, Vermont, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, and Washington D.C.
These states will cast their collective 165 electoral votes to whichever candidate wins the national popular vote when NPV is enacted. More states need to be added to reach 270. I selected nine more states that went Democratic this last election. That’s in keeping with the political leanings of those already in the NPV compact. I selected Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Minnesota, Oregon, New Mexico, Nevada, and Virginia. These add another 63 electoral votes, which is not enough. So I added three states that went Republican to the mix: Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee. These additional 42 electoral votes bring the total to 270 electoral votes.
The Electoral College results would have been 270 electoral votes for Clinton and 268 for Trump. The vote disparity is close to the actual popular vote results.
Vote disparity with Trump winning the popular vote
What IF Trump had won the popular vote instead? He lost by about 2% of the popular vote so this scenario could easily have happened.
Using the same mix of states in the first scenario, Clinton would have captured four electoral votes to Trump’s 534! Almost all of those Democratic leaning (blue) states would now cast their electoral votes for Trump.
Vote disparity using more red states for NPV
Instead of adding the states I did above to the NPV compact, let’s use some states that voted Republican. To those states already in the compact, let’s add: Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Mississippi.
Clinton’s popular vote win in this scenario gives her a total of 333 electoral votes to Trump’s 205. The vote disparity expands enormously from the first scenario!
Vote disparity with Trump winning with red states added to NPV
Let’s use the same states I did for the third scenario above. If Trump won the popular vote (remember, it was close), he would have captured 483 electoral votes to Clinton’s 55.
Vote disparity and consistency matters
Vote disparity between the Electoral College results and the popular vote matters. Our voting system should be reliable, consistent, and reflect how the nation votes—individually and state-by-state. Three out of four of the above scenarios miss that objective by a mile!
Two more concerns come to mind.
Vote representation matters
First concern: What happens when voters do not choose the winner? Their votes are not represented at all! Would they feel disenfranchised from the process? Will they be inclined to turn out in greater numbers in the next election? Would their voter apathy increase?
The results shown in three of the four scenarios above would be very discouraging for future political engagement. Is this what we want for our nation?
Vote disparity drives the news
Second concern: The news media and the political parties tend to ignore vote disparity. They compare electoral vote totals to glean the messages of who won AND by how much. It doesn’t matter if the popular vote is similar to those results or not.
Such messages speak of mandates with little regard to actual vote results. Imagine the messaging if Trump exceeded Clinton by 534 electoral votes! It’s hard to deny any candidate winning by that much and not believe they won by a landslide. The country would be their oyster, so to speak.
These lopsided results can easily swing both ways (Republican or Democrat), especially in close elections. Our voting results should be reflective of how the nation votes as a general population and on a state-by-state basis. To do otherwise produces a rich arena wherein political spin rules the day.
Let’s keep the voting disparities minimal and our voting results consistently reliable. Only Equal Voice Voting can make this promise.