In the Washington Post yesterday, article here, EJ Dionne, Jr. is grasping (gasping) for some kind of revolt in the Constitutionally based Electoral College to keep Donald Trump from becoming President of the United States.
The basis for the argument is not just Trump’s off-putting Twitter explosions (that many on the left honestly believe will become actual nuclear explosions on January 20.), it is the fact Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by close to three million votes.
Mr. Dionne and his band of rebels need to get a grip.
One of the first things students learn about the founding of our country is the great debate which took place between the populous states of the north and the agrarian, lesser populous states of the south. The nation’s founders knew the larger states should not run the smaller ones. So they compromised in what became Madison’s bicameral legislature. The compromise was also developed into the Presidential Elections: The big states would not rule out the smaller ones. The President would not be elected by popular vote, but by Fifty popular votes.
In elections before 2016, this would have easily been explained thusly: “We do not want New York City and Los Angelos electing a president every four years.” It would certainly make for cheaper campaigns, but gosh, Dubuque Iowa would never see another Presidential Candidate, Ever.
But 2016 has changed the conversation. Instead of warning against the metropolis’s electing the President, we are calling for exactly that to happen. Democrats do not like the county map of the United States showing Presidential winners- because it looks like Hillary only won New York City and Los Angelos.
Because it fits the narrative, somehow this year, the popular vote matters more than the Electoral College. In 1992, when Hillary’s husband defeated George Bush with the glorious help of Ross Perot, USA Today claimed the victory was a “LANDSLIDE!”
But his landslide was in the Electoral College. In terms of popular vote (the same popular vote Democrats are trying to knock the Electoral College with today) he won only 43% of the vote.
What was hot in 1992 is not in 2016.
Hillary’s strategy of ‘mentioning’ the good folks in Madison, Wisconsin did not translate into the good folks voting for her. That’s so 1984. Tim Kaine’s attempt to mention every state in the Union didn’t work either. Dear future Presidential Candidates, long gone are the days when the shtick of mentioning a city on national television endears that city to vote for you.
And please read Former (and late) Speaker of the House Tip O’Neill’s riveting memoirs, All Politics is Local. There is a section in there which warns against mixing sports with politics. People don’t go to baseball games to see the Governor or a campaigning politician. They will boo you. And apparently, the choice of our sports stars don’t matter much either, as King of Ohio Lebron James’ support of Mrs. Clinton did not translate into the 500,000 votes she needed to overcome Donald Trump.
Keep the College. It is there for a reason. Hillary did not step foot in Wisconsin after the primary loss to Bernie Sanders by 135,000 votes on April 6. So they didn’t vote for her. Same story in Michigan. She ‘headlined’ a concert in Cleveland with Jay Z to get out the vote, an event upstaged by Jay Z’s profanity-laced tirade which did nothing to spark his followers to go to the polls, but most likely drove the little old ladies to vote against anyone associated with him.
In some ways, I shall contradict myself, it still is 1992, when a celebrity standing up and spewing a foul-mouthed diatribe would backfire for their candidate of choice. Hollywood has no stars anymore. Why do politicians continue to believe we will do what they say?
The same woman who stood smugly by as the debate moderator asked Trump if he would accept the results of the election, needs to accept it as she expected it. And send an email to her followers to do the same.