The Watering Hole: Wednesday, February 27, 2013: Vote-Rigging – The Case for Amending the Constitution

Or Why Section 1, Article 2 is suddenly in the forefront.

The Republican Party, having been stung in the past two Presidential elections have taken it upon themselves to change the rules.

Red states will continue to award electoral college votes on a winner take all basis. But in Blue state after Blue state, Republicans are introducing measures to apportion electoral college votes based on the percentage of the popular vote each party receives. The net result should guarantee that Republicans would regain the White House in 2016, even if they lost the popular vote by a landslide.

But is this Constitutional? Yes. Here’s the relevant portion of Section 1, Article 2:

Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

In fact, the various States could decide to appoint Electors without regard to the popular vote. That’s how broad the power granted to the State’s Legislatures is.

As of this writing, the move to rig elections hasn’t gotten much traction. But in the article linked above, it looks like the Pennslvania State Legislature could ram this through and get it to a willing Republican Governor’s desk for his signature. In these days of very few swing states, even one of them adopting such a rigging scheme could make a difference in the next Presidential election.

The Michigan GOP is eager to do the same thing. Republicans have finally figured out that the people aren’t buying what they have to sell. If our democracy applied the same market rules as Capitalism, they would be out of business. But instead of changing their product line, they want to change the rules of the game; they want a monopoly over the election process.

This, then, is the argument for amending the Constitution to call for electing the President and Vice-President based on the nation-wide popular vote. To be sure, the Ruling Class will spend hundreds of millions to defeat such an amendment.

Already too much power has been consolidated into a hand-full of elected representative who are beholden only to the very, very wealthy. They have gerry-rigged districts, safe seats, and access to virtually unlimited war chests and attack ads to defeat any challenger.

We, the people, must choose: either we change the current system through peaceful means, or it will get to a point where change will come through violence. Just know this; even in peaceful protests, people die. Those in power will, far too often stop at nothing to maintain that power. The uprisings in the Middle East foreshadow the United States’ future unless something changes.


50 thoughts on “The Watering Hole: Wednesday, February 27, 2013: Vote-Rigging – The Case for Amending the Constitution

  1. I was told that there is a lawsuit ready to file in Pennsylvania.

    This part of the Constitution should have been changed when the last disenfranchised Americans, women, were given the right to vote.

  2. It’s not easy to sit back and watch one’s country die. The biggest barrier to tyranny has always been the people’s voice; Republicans have finally figured that out, come to understand that’s why they so often lose, and have found the Constitutional means to reverse and repair their problem — not by changing their tune, but by grinding We the people under the boot heel of wealth and power, of fear, of hatred.

    Billionaires, power mongers, and nitwits everywhere across the land must be rejoicing at the prospect.

    I’ve already written and scheduled Friday’s Watering Hole post . . . “great minds” apparently do indeed, BnF, think alike! 😀

  3. Hump hump HUMP hump h-u-m-p….

    there, got that out of my system…on the lighter side of things, John Boehner is a totally freaked out, frightened, puppet of the TeaPotty these days. his comical “tough guy” talk to arouse a “sleeping senate” to get off their asses, is pathetic at best.

    have another Manhattan and practice your backswing Johnny…’ll accomplish all you’re truly interested in, as Amurka burns to the ground

    • Eric Cantor is completely focused on doing the best thing for Eric Cantor. He could not care less what happens to Virginia. We’re screwed, and yet there are still people here defending the R’s. They seem to think the sequester only affects those lazy, greedy federal workers.

        • when the fire fighters can’t save their burning homes because they’re short handed, or the paramedics can’t save a life of a loved one because they have to come from across town, people will realize just how these criminals have sold them out over NOTHING that couldn’t have been easily controlled.

          • Boehner Defends Decision to Remain on Ass

            WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—Minutes after telling the United States Senate to “get off their ass” to avoid the deep spending cuts that will take effect this Friday, House Speaker John Boehner called an impromptu press conference to announce his intention of remaining on his ass “for the foreseeable future.”

      • We’re screwed, and yet there are still people here defending the R’s.


        Have you ever read “What Makes People Vote Republican?” by Jonathan Haidt (pronounced, I recently learned, “height”.) It’s not too long and it offers some very good insight into the answer to your question. In short, it’s about values and how conservative-minded people emphasize values differently than us. While we all think fairness and justice are important, they are more important to Liberals than they are to Conservatives.

        …the second rule of moral psychology is that morality is not just about how we treat each other (as most liberals think); it is also about binding groups together, supporting essential institutions, and living in a sanctified and noble way. When Republicans say that Democrats “just don’t get it,” this is the “it” to which they refer.

    • Once Americans start feeling the impact of the sequestration on their families, budgets, schools and such, the R’s are going to get clobbered. Most Americans think they are the ones who are hosing up.

  4. Man fined $85,000 for killing whooping crane, has rifle confiscated

    South Dakotan Jeff Blachford, 26, has been handed a stiff sentence that includes $85,000 in restitution and two years of probation for violating the Federal Endangered Species Act after shooting and killing an endangered whooping crane, reports Wildlife Extra. He will also be required to surrender his firearms, as well as be prohibited from hunting, fishing or trapping within the U.S. for the next two years.

  5. Just in case you missed it. Keith Ellison gives inSeannity the respect he deserves. None! I agree that it was a thing of beauty but the RWEC will be calling Mr. Ellison “unhinged” for months. That doesn’t bother me in the least and I would be delighted if every Democrat who appears on FAUX”News” follows his lead. He did miss one opportunity though. When inSeannity was bleating “I’m not a Republican” Mr. Ellison should have said; “because Republicans aren’t extreme enough for you”. I can only imagine the vile filth the freaks at FOX Nation are spewing but I’m not going to give them a hit to be disgusted.

    • I never . . . NEVER!! . . . watch ANYTHING on Fox. But I do and have always liked Keith Ellison, so I made an exception. Ellison kicked Hannity’s ass and that was good. But I’ll NEVER watch anything on Fox again. I mean, Jeebus those fuckers are SICK SICK SICK!

      Time to go wash the barf off my keyboard, screen, walls, desk, etc. God, that fucking Hannity is SUCH a disgusting asshole that he makes Ted Nugent look like a dick instead of a dingleberry.

    • pretty fucking funny….a “registered conservative”….really?

      that’s never been an option on any voter registration i’ve ever seen…

      • It’s just another little quirk of the dark Reich-wing fantasy inSeannity inhabits. The one where the lawfully elected President of the United States is a Marxist/Muslim/fascist sleeper agent from Kendonesia.

  6. I finally finished cleaning the old apartment and turned in my key, so it’s official, I’m once again a citizen of Dumbfuckistan. 🙂

    I’ve made a one year commitment to living here to help with my dad’s probate and work on getting my soap business on solid ground. The bag business is still going, and I’ll have to set some priorities there as well.

    Now, it’s time for a nap. That flu really kicked my butt.

  7. Great article by Truthout
    Our Food Is Being Hijacked by Monopolizing Corporations

    Wenonah Hauter: Ever since the Reagan Administration pulled federal anti-trust cops off their beat, the federal government has been allowing giant mergers between competitors. As a result, massive consolidation has taken place in the food industry, giving the meatpackers, grain companies, food processing conglomerates and the grocery industry unprecedented economic power. These companies stand as a bottleneck between fewer than a million farmers and more than 300 million consumers. They lower the prices that farmers receive and increase the prices that consumers pay, keeping more of the profits for themselves.

    Meanwhile, the cost of seeds, fertilizers, fuel and other inputs is continuing to rise as these industries also become more monopolized. Most farmers are scratching by, trying to hold on to their land and eke out a living. We are losing small and midsize farms at a rapid rate, resulting in the consolidation of smaller farms into larger corporate-style industrial operations with full-time managers and contract labor.

  8. How the Bush administration sold the war – and we bought it | Valerie Plame Wilson and Joe Wilson

    For nearly a year prior to the invasion, President Bush and his administration peppered the airwaves with serious accusations against Saddam Hussein, including claims of aluminum tubes that could be used in centrifuges to enrich uranium, and of Iraqi efforts to purchase uranium yellowcake from Africa. The intelligence supporting the claims was either not believed or was highly disputed by the experts. But that did not stop senior government officials from repeating them incessantly; nor did it prevent the powerful neoconservative ideologues who were the war’s most fervent supporters from parroting them with menacingly jingoistic passion.

    • Remember when that child fell into gorilla habitat at Brookfield Zoo and that gorilla came over and protected her until they could get her out. A conservative probably would have said it was too expensive to rescue the kid. They have really pissed me off today.

  9. Why hasn’t Hagel destroyed Israel yet? After listening to McGrumps and Butters, I would think it would be tops on his agenda.

  10. QOTD:

    “Quite frankly, you are the worst excuse for a journalist I’ve ever seen” — Keith Ellison (D-amn straight) speaking to Sean Hannity.

    • And the reality is that journalists are rarely seen on the TV and you have search for them on the intertubes. Or, alternatively, you can find a good parking space on the intertubes where people with similar views find writings and video by actual journalists and post links for your enjoyment. Hang on, I’ve got to put another quarter in my Zoo meter!

  11. From TPM:

    Compare and contrast.
    1. Justice Scalia today regarding the voting rights act: “This is not the kind of question you can leave to Congress.”

    2. The United States Constitution, Amendment XV: “SECTION 1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. SECTION 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.” (My emphasis.)

  12. QOTD II:

    “In related news, Glenn Beck accuses Yosemite Sam of provoking gun-control advocates by “shootin up varmints”. Beck is furious that Mr Sam has not responded to his phone calls for comment.”

  13. So. If this bill becomes law a doctor in Kansas can lie to a pregnant woman about the detection of genetic anomalies and/or birth defects of her fetus in order to prevent her aborting said fetus and never be held liable in civil court. I don’t spend a great deal of time with the whole abortion argument because I consider it such a deeply personal and emotionally charged subject that I feel the best course for me is to stay clear of it. I do, however, know enough that no sane woman would treat such a decision casually. The circumstances leading to an abortion are, by definition, tragic and attempts to criminalize it are even more tragic. But?

    Enabling a doctor to place his/her religious beliefs above serving his/her patients is disgusting beyond words. Can you imagine the Congress of Kansas pursuing legislation that would allow a doctor to lie to a male patient about finding he has testicular cancer because said doctor believes it’s an “abomination” to remove a man’s testicles? Well, when I consider this sad chapter, I have to believe they would if they weren’t primitive, misogynistic, ignoramuses who believe that men are entitled to rule women.

    Next up? How about legislation that would allow a doctor to lie about a 12 year old rape victim being pregnant at all until, according to Kansas law, it’s too late to have an abortion? How about lying about a condition that would kill a woman if her pregnancy continues? I sincerely hope there are enough sane legislators left in Kansas to prevent this abominable law passing.

    • Sharia Law is already here and the Taliban has nothing to do with it…

      This is thoroughly disgusting. Damn Kansas is so primitive.

    • Each pregnant woman in Kansas should warn her doctor that if she’s lied to about the health of her fetus, she will ruin that doctor’s reputation and tell every woman she knows to stay away from that doctor.

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