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Movement to end the Electorate College: The data

April 20, 2014

With the US Presidential Election decided by essentially 7-10 swing states, a movement has started to do away with the all-or-nothing Electorate College.  Instead, a growing group of states has signed a pact to distribute their Electorate College votes proportionally based on the popular vote of each state.


This map shows where each state is at in the process.  11 states have already signed the legislation into law, including California and Washington.  Colorado looks like the next on deck.  Then there are 10 more that have gotten the legislation through one state house.  The magic number is to get 270 Electorate Votes to support it.  This change would fundamentally shift the American Presidential election process.  The question is, how close are we?  We’re already at 165 already (passed) and if you add in the states that are at stage 4 & 5 of the process in the map above, that number jumps to 250!

But the initial analysis masks an important trend.  Note ALL of the states that had passed it are D leaning states.  Not only that, they were some of the most liberal states in the union.  Conversely, the states that have advanced this process the least and are at Stage 1 or 2 on the map above (Bills introduced only & Hearings held) are almost all R-leaning or swing states (who love the hundreds of millions elections pour into their state).  If you love to see the data yourself, I created a table which shows how polarizing the issue is.  It can be viewed here.  Note the heavy biases by political leaning.

Apparently, the move towards a “popular vote” system is one that D’s feel will help them win and R’s feel will be detrimental, and swing states regardless of leaning don’t support.  To tighten the original estimation, I reexamined the states in that 250 number and looked for D leaning states that had would pass the law into action but would be blocked by a Republican governor.  Also, I subtracted the states that were at Stage 4 of the process, but lean R.

The final analysis at the bottom of the table shows:


In summary, it appears that while it has garnered significant and growing support, that support has been highly partisan and this legislation is unlikely to garner the widespread bi-partisan support needed to pass it in the near future.  Even looking at an upper bounds if everything were perfect, at 222 it still falls substantially short.

Great continued reading on which states get screwed by the Electorate College.  Hint Wyoming residents are counted 3:1 over the most screwed state.


From → Politco

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