Monday, December 12, 2016

Reiboldt: The electoral college is a good thing

(From Rep. Bill Reiboldt, R-Seneca)

The electoral college has again come under attack following the results of the 2016 presidential election. The liberal left is advocating the scrapping of the electoral college process, and their desire is to have the president elected by a national popular vote under the guidelines of the federal government and not by the individual states. Another group—the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact—has also gotten behind this idea and is pushing it. They are seeking a constitutional amendment designed to replace the electoral college with a national popular vote, and they are currently visiting individual states in an attempt to get their amendment ratified. So far, the group has the support of ten states—all blue ones. However, in Missouri, very little interest or support has been shown for the movement.

President-elect Trump joins John Quincy Adams, Rutherford B. Hays, Benjamin Harrison, and George W. Bush as the only individuals who won the presidency without winning the popular vote. In the election of 2012, President Obama won 61% of the electoral votes but only 51% of the popular vote. Because of the closeness of the count in the recent election, it is uncertain at this time as to whether Donald Trump did indeed lose the popular vote as reported. Regardless, the numbers do reflect a very deep and wide geographical division within America today, mainly between the nation’s heavily populated urban areas and the more sparsely populated rural areas. It also reflects the pronounced differences in American’s lifestyles. In my opinion, the doing away of the electoral college is an extremely dangerous idea, as the college protects the liberty of all American voters, urban and rural. Replacing it with the national popular vote could prove to be seriously problematic.

I believe the actions of our founding fathers have been proven to be incredibly wise in regard to the electoral college. Their desire was to establish a representative constitutional republic that would endure and would create stability, freedom and liberty for all its citizens. What they gave us was a nation, the likes of which the world had never known, and a government that has truly endured the test of time.

Today we hear a lot about democracy and majority rule, and some are advocating for a change, but why in our country’s early years was there such great distain for creating a “pure democracy”? It has been very well documented as to why our constitutional framers were so opposed to it. Alexander Hamilton said, “Real liberty is never found is despotism or in the extreme of democracy” (Federalist Papers). Samuel Adams was quoted: “Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself.” James Madison, in his Federalist Paper No. 10, made it clear that the founders favored and fashioned a republic instead of a pure democracy. They wanted power to be divided at the national level into the three branches of government and powers to be again divided between national and state governments. This separation provided double security for the rights of all the people, which was most important to the framers.

After the signing of the Declaration of Independence, and prior to the adoption of the United States Constitution, our young nation experienced difficult times. Individual states were comprised of an elected legislature, but had no state constitutions to restrain them or limit their powers. All the powers of governing were vested throughout the states in legislatures where the majority ruled. Governor Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts was quoted as saying: “The evils we experience flow from the excess of democracy.” In 1787, Virginia Governor Edmond Randolph reiterated his desire for a republic at the constitutional convention that year.

Our founders stated that pure democracy would ultimately break down into either anarchy or the tyranny of mob rule. Fearing the oppression of majority rule, our founders clearly established a constitutional republic, where laws are made and administered by representatives who have limited powers and who are restrained by a written constitution, thus preventing a government from depriving individuals of their rights and liberties.

The electoral college was designed to elect a president, to prevent tyranny by the majority, and to protect the liberty of the individual. It has worked well for over 200 years, and even though some were dissatisfied with the results of the recent election and are searching for ways to change things, the electoral college process has proven itself to be one of our nation’s greatest assets in liberty and fairness. Instead of being casually tossed aside, it should be staunchly defended and safeguarded.

I will continue my thoughts on this subject next week.


Anonymous said...

And now the country will be subjected to the tyranny of minority rule. Seems to me that the South African Model is alive and well here in America. I seem to recall that in 1960 the Supreme Court upheld the principle of "One Man, One Vote' and it is high time to get rid of the no longer relevant EC.

Unknown said...

Rep Reilbolt is spot on!! Good post!
From the beginning we never were a democracy; rather a republic. Next time a disageer questions that; I would remind him to think about the pledge of allegiance the next time he is in Civiv club, etc.

Unknown said...

If I'd very relevant! Rep Reiboldt is spot on!
We never had a democracy; always a Republic.
Check your pledge if allegiance

Harvey Hutchinson 303-522-6622 voice&text 24/7

Anonymous said...

Come to think of it, we are probably at the point where we can do away with States and go to a Federalized Regional Governmental System.

Anonymous said...

In fact, it is probably time to scrap the Republican System and go to a Federation. I envision splitting the country into six separate and self governing districts which would handle all of the functions allocated to the current States.

Anonymous said...

Those who promote "One man, one vote" have already shown that they are willing to stuff ballot boxes and let the dead and non-citizens vote. The removal of the firewall that is the Electoral College would grant mob rule to whoever could garner the most "votes" by any means possible. The EC prevents mob rule. That's why the mob doesn't like it.

Ghostwritten by a Staffer said...

I've met Bill Riebolt. The character is no constitutional scholar, or rather he is as much of a constitutional scholar as 'our' manchild of a supposed president who as a foreign-born Fullbright scholar was on the Harvard law school review and didn't write anything original either.

Ninety percent of the land area inhabited mostly by rural whites in places like Nebraska and the Dakotas and Kansas, and yes, Missouri, isn't going to pass any such Constitutional Amendment which would leave them up to exploitation by ten big non-white states like California, New York, Illinois and inevitably Florida and Texas. Hillary has 2 million votes more than Trump because these illegal aliens in California voted for her by 2.7 million or so. California ought to be divided into another state of Northern California, i.e. "Jefferson" as has been proposed since the 1930s.

Hillary lost because she is an old sick evil crooked bitch. Right now the Democrats are trying to de-legitimize Trump like Trump allegedly did against Obama, the First Kenyan.

Nothing would make me happier than for balkanization and racial strife to partition this Empire into dozens, even hundreds of petty local nations working only for their local citizens. Then we shall see if we have enough in common for "federalism" to work.

Bill Riebolt is simply some local idiot whose only value is to collect campaign contributions from the Humphries and agribusiness interests and who will end up being term-linited out in a few years until replaced by another idiot just like him who will collect the contributions and vote accordingly.

Anonymous said...

We have been moving away from absolutely defined state entities since the 1930's. At that time it was well recognized that state jurisdiction left a bunch of loopholes that the criminal element could take advantage of. Then in the 1940's we saw the rise of the city state in which the city transcended community and state lines. This became the MSA's over the next thirty years. Right now, there are a total of nineteen city states which has influence which extends across multiple state lines. The state is rapidly becoming obsolete and will eventually be replaced by multi-state regions which will dictate a unified policy. All I am suggesting is that we move to regional administrative districts governing multiple states. Consider the administrative costs which could be avoided by abolishing state legislatures. We know that a Federated System works, because we had that under the Articles of Confederation and it actually was a workable system. This does not mean we trashcan the Constitution but merely rewrite it to reflect the new reality. It is obvious that this country is headed into a new era of Corporation rule so at least set up a political system which will make the best of the oncoming situation.

Anonymous said...

The United States is a natural to be split into regions. I would envision six Administrative Districts. Those would be the West Coast (including Hawaii and Alaska), New England (including the Upper Middle Atlantic states), the Deep South, the Upper Midwest, the Great Plains and the Southwest. Regional economies, distribution networks, similar policies and political division already exist within these six areas so it really is not a stretch to envision such a Federation composition. It worked quite well for Australia for decades.