Don Stratton: The Electoral College: The other side of the story

A recent column in this newspaper by Robert Reich, titled “Get democracy back in elections,” presented a pretty convincing case for eliminating, or at least subverting, the Electoral College.

Of course, it’s easy to present a convincing case when you totally fail to mention the other side of this currently controversial issue. That other side contains an equally convincing argument that democracy in presidential elections can only exist as long as they are decided by the Electoral College.

The title of the column itself begs the argument that eliminating or bypassing the Electoral College would be a surefire way of eliminating democracy in presidential elections, since they would then be decided by the population of less than 25% of the geographical area of the country, and the citizens of the other geographical 75% would be all but disenfranchised. This has already happened in the 2012 election of Obama, when he was elected by the residents of only a small percentage of the geographical area. An NBC news report at the time stated, “President Obama established an all-time low percentage of U.S. counties for a successful presidential candidate — just 689 of more than 3000, or a paltry 22%. But the ones he won were the most populous.”

One reason for the creation of the Electoral College was that the founding fathers did not consider the average citizen to be sufficiently informed to be able to pick the president. We know that today the citizens have more opportunity to be better informed, but unfortunately that information comes more often than not from biased news networks and information overload. An article in this paper on Feb. 16 reported that a Gallup/Knight Foundation poll showed that half of Americans believe that national news organizations “intend to mislead.” It also showed that 61% of Americans believe that the information overload makes it harder to stay informed.

Reich’s column discussed a current movement to effectively subvert the constitution by having states band together in the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, and give all of their electoral votes to one candidate, based on the popular vote. He also states, “Naturally, this plan will face legal challenges.”

Hopefully, if this movement succeeds in signing on enough states, we will still have a Supreme Court with sufficient character and fortitude to defend the constitution and strike it down when the inevitable legal challenge takes place.

Of course, more Republicans than Democrats favor the Electoral College, simply because both parties know that eliminating it will greatly benefit the Democrats. The 2012 Republican platform put forth another serious question that has since reared its ugly head when it stated, “We oppose the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact or any other scheme to abolish or distort the procedures of the Electoral College. We recognize that an unconstitutional effort to impose ‘national popular vote’ would be a mortal threat to our federal system and a guarantee of corruption as every ballot box in every state would become a chance to steal the presidency.”

The ideas promoted in Reich’s column constitute just one more step in the recent drive by Democrats to declare that any law, idea or thought that does not agree with their ideology is a threat to democracy. Apparently, their idea of democracy is a country with one-party rule, the Democrats. A country where no one outside of their candidate would stand a chance of being elected president, barring a Democrat president being so bad that even they would turn against him. The unyielding wall of support shown by the Democrats in Congress for the current occupant of the White House indicates that no Democratic president will ever be that bad.

The Democrats are doing everything in their power to impose one-party rule in the country, and one-party rule is at best only slightly short of a dictatorship.

Don Stratton is a retired inspector for the Lima Police Department. His column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Lima News editorial board or AIM Media, owner of The Lima News.