Heroic deeds in our everyday lives
Heroic deeds are rather like the seasonings we use to add flavor to our meals. They’re not overwhelming, used (experienced) sparingly, yet make living—and trust in humanity—worthwhile. I’ll confess that I’ve been a subscriber to Reader’s Digest for many years and have often enjoyed to many stories telling of heroic deeds (see Everyday Heroes). Such people don’t put themselves first. They respond to a situation for the betterment, sometimes the very lives, of others. These glimpses of everyday people stepping forward to turn challenges into memorable moments lift one’s spirits.
Nevada Governor Sisolak performs an heroic deed
I have witnessed a heroic deed committed recently in state politics. As you’re probably aware, the National Popular Vote (NPV) bill is progressing forward and it was largely assumed that Nevada would soon be merged into the ranks of its compact. Not so! Nevada Governor Sisolak, counter to his own Democratic party, vetoed the bill because he realized it’s not the right policy to adopt for his state.
As quoted in the Las Vegas Review-Journal:Governor Sisolak said :
[that joining other states in approving the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact] could diminish the role of smaller states like Nevada in national electoral contests and force Nevada’s electors to side with whoever wins the nationwide popular vote, rather than the candidate Nevadans choose.
I recognize that many of my fellow Nevadans may disagree on this point, and I appreciate the Legislature’s thoughtful consideration of this important issue. As Nevada’s governor, I am obligated to make such decisions according to my own conscience. In cases like this, where Nevada’s interests could diverge from the interests of large states, I will always stand up for Nevada.
NPV needs to be resisted
NPV fails the test of voting fairness and positive consequence on many levels. I have pointed out how it is ridiculous, radical, and dangerous. It’s ridiculous because it fails to correct the winner-takes-all approach that causes the voting issues. It’s radical because it ignores the U.S. Constitution, the fact that we are a representative democracy, and the sovereignty of states. It’s dangerous because it will give credence to a false Electoral College voting result creating a false political message.
The NPV compact does not abolish the Electoral College, as it so hints, falsely promising better election results ahead. The tease of abolishing the Electoral College gives traction to the notion of one person, one vote. Such a promise cannot be kept because the Electoral College translates popular votes into electoral votes thereby forfeiting such claims.
But let’s make no mistake. The Electoral College is an ingenious system and should not be abolished. Rather, it should be held up for the amazing service it can render. It could, if we but remove the winner-takes-all aspect (not a part of the Electoral College) and allow the election results emerge as intended.
NPV has appeal by providing a perceived solution to what many sense is a voting problem with the Electoral College. Many believe NPV is a viable remedy due to recently experience of two elections (2000 and 2016) wherein the nation’s popular vote did not deliver a winner. However, NPV only addresses a symptomwithout considering the systemic failing itself.
NPV does not remove the winner-takes-all aspect, the true cause of our presidential election woes. Instead, NPV disenfranchises large blocs of voters and ignores the sovereignty of our individual states, as noted by Governor Sisolak. NPV forfeits the notion that our nation is a representative democracy and that its governance is a Federalist Republic—bringing many separate states together as one nation.
Will other legislators follow Sisolak’s heroic example?
Now that one courageous governor has broken ranks and voted his conscience (and, I might add, employing good reason), I’m looking forward to other state legislators to do the same. My own Governor Brown may soon have the opportunity to resist the trend as well. Oregon’s legislature is currently favoring the compact without giving it a full examination to realize its failings. Maine’s Governor Mills may also soon face the same voting challenge. Is either of these governors up to following the courageous leadership of their Nevada colleague?
Equal Voice Voting promises every vote matters, every state is heard
There is a need for a more practical approach that addresses the systemic problem, heeds the demands of the power of the popular vote, and respects the sovereignty of every state. Equal Voice Voting (EVV) solves these concerns practically and respectfully. EVV uses a proportional voting approach on a state-by-state basis. It is a voting remedy wherein every vote matters and every state is heard. The only heroic deeds it requires is for our legislators to ensure all constituent voting voices matter. Give them the encouragement (and awareness) that you support EVV instead of NPV for our presidential election process.