National Dunce Day Discussion Thread

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Post by Sim Kid » Sat Dec 17, 2016 12:40 am

^ Instead, it's turned out to "Give all the power to Florida, Virginia, Ohio, and North Carolina" aka "Where our margins are slim enough it's worth it to campaign in". You might as well draw genitals on the presidential part of the ballot if you're in a state where a party polls with big margins when you do not side with that party.


And I dunno... 23 states do not have laws about faithless electors, and faithless electors have not actually gotten any penalties. Even the guy who voted for someone named "John Ewards".

I doubt it personally. :V Some states that DO have faithless elector laws, like North Carolina, iirc, actually make it so that your vote does not count. I don't know if that applies to everyone.

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Post by New! Tazy Ten » Sat Dec 17, 2016 1:17 am

That's part of a long running issue where people stick to party lines rather than for the candidate that's best for them. And you can't blame them when both parties put people on a pedestal that practically orgasm at the thought of ruining lives and hurting people for going against them.

In that case the problem with the system isn't the electoral college but with the parties themselves refusing to work together on much of anything. But no one will ever admit that because we put too much faith in extremists rather than actual rational types. People that shout rather than use facts. If there's anywhere we need to start it's there. Though I guess the problem there is that it's very easy to swing towards hatred rather than empathy, harder to call a friend out than it is to agree with them on bad ideas. But if someone doesn't start you can bet we're gonna wind up here again and again.

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Post by I am nobody » Sat Dec 17, 2016 6:20 am

[QUOTE="Festivus Ten, post: 1616349, member: 19345"]^^ The answer is not "give all the power to big cities" though. That's exactly why we made the Electoral College in the first place, so every state impacts the vote appropriately rather than whoever has the largest population.[/QUOTE]

I've never understood this argument. Impacting the vote "appropriately" is a matter of population size - your voting power should not be determined by where you live or how many people live there with you. If you want to live in the middle of Wyoming by yourself, that's your freedom, but it doesn't make your opinion more important than if you'd stayed in New York.

I have no problem with systems that prevent a dictatorship of the 50.01%, but the 49.99%'s ability to influence one system (ie, the election) should not be dependent on their physical location within it. To continue picking on Wyoming, the 174,419 Trump votes cast there should not be more influential than the 461,174 Trump votes from New York City, and they absolutely shouldn't be infinitely more influential, as they were in our current system.

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Post by New! Tazy Ten » Sat Dec 17, 2016 9:09 am

There are certain issues that only impact certain parts of the United States though. Who's gonna care about what fresh hell Michigan or Delaware is going through when California is ten times larger than them?

My problem is that replacing the electoral college with the popular vote does not fix our problem here at all. It not "more fair", and it's certainly not an improvement. It just changes the battleground states from one group to another and risks smaller states having no voice at all by comparison. That's why the electoral college exists at all: It gave big states like Texas and New York and Florida an appropriate amount of votes to side with its larger population [still more than most, mind you] but the amount they control is much smaller than it would be under a popular vote and therefore smaller states get heard in a comparatively more equal fashion. That's why I think if anything we need to look at the electoral college by continuing that need to ensure all states get fair representation. Falling into the trap of wanting the majority to have their say, while having good intentions, isn't what we need to make the voting system work better. At least not in my opinion.

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Post by I am nobody » Sat Dec 17, 2016 9:33 am

Fair representation is equal representation, and again, I say this as someone who spent the majority of my life in Delaware. California was 39 times larger than us, and it should have 39 times the influence in the presidential election. It's already absurd enough that our 0.3% of the US population got 2% of the representation in the Senate.

State level appeal doesn't matter in a popular vote system. If Delaware's 900,000 people are going through fresh hell, solving that problem is as appealing to candidates as solving any other 900,000 people's problem. More critically, if southern Delaware has a problem, those 200,000 people are as valuable as any other 200,000 - under the Electoral College, they're Republicans outnumbered ~70/30 and therefore of no relevance to anyone.

The fair way to ensure minority populations have a voice in government is proportional representation, and the Electoral College is about as far from that as you can get.

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Post by Random User » Sat Dec 17, 2016 12:22 pm

Transferable voting is the best way to go about elections and help with the madness of political parties in a power struggle.

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Post by New! Tazy Ten » Sat Dec 17, 2016 12:34 pm

They deserve that 2% and should keep it. The issues of a city filled with people, the issues of a town with a sizable population, and the issues of farms run by a few families can be just as crippling to all of us and should be treated equally regardless of how you or I see it.

And are you saying that both the popular vote and electoral college are absolutely awful? Because that's the vibe I'm getting. On one hand you're saying that minorities suffer under the electoral college when another group is "outnumbered ~70/30 and therefore of no relevance to anyone". Do you honestly think a popular vote would suddenly make the 30% matter...? You're gonna tell me it's unfair that Wyoming determines the presidency because its population is split politically, but California should totally be allowed to overturn the entire Northeast?

All problems we suffer under an electoral college will not be solved by a single flat popular vote across the country. In fact it might actually be worse in a lot of ways. Getting a different result sometimes is expected in a system like this, but if we really want to treat everyone equally and not just stomp our feet because "I coulda' won if this didn't happen" then we should be glad it defies the popular vote. We're 51 separate sections that make up a country, not one large hive minded clump and literally everything about our government does relies on state level appeal from our politicians to the difference in taxes and living expenses. The differences between states is f**king staggering sometimes. So, If anything that gives minorities more of a voice as it shrinks the playing field down to different states and allows the issues of a state to matter just as much as the national issues. To remove that is to kill the individual's needs and makes it so only society at large matters. I don't know about you, but when I don't like that one group determines the election for a country my thought to fix it isn't "give all this power to another larger group located in another part of the country". That's not fixing anything.

How about getting rid of the winner take all rule? That would ensure that each section of a state gets to use their vote in the way they want and they're not "useless" to the process. It would be more accurate and it would greatly decrease the power of swing states while keeping the original intent of the Electoral College intact. Sure it's more complicated, but I'd like to think we'd get used to it.

^ That might work too. I'm all for giving more parties an equal chance to impress the populace.

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Post by Auron » Sat Dec 17, 2016 1:21 pm

[QUOTE="Festivus Ten, post: 1616349, member: 19345"]^^ The answer is not "give all the power to big cities" though. That's exactly why we made the Electoral College in the first place, so every state impacts the vote appropriately rather than whoever has the largest population.[/QUOTE]
This argument bothers me. Everyone always says "if we go by popular vote, than only NYC, LA, and Chicago will matter." I say ********. The population of this country is over 318 million. The population of those three cities is a little over 15 million. That means that those big cities that "have all the power" only account for 5% of the total population of this country. Oh how mighty they are. And how many people in those cities do not even vote because they believe they won't be able to swing their own state? If you went by popular vote, perhaps more people in traditionally blue cities would be motivated to vote because they know that its not going to be flushed down the toilet due to the electoral system. Likewise for anyone living in the bible belt red states. How many people living out there don't even bother to vote because they know its going to go red anyways?

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Post by I am nobody » Sat Dec 17, 2016 2:04 pm

Festivus Ten, post: 1616382, member: 19345 wrote:They deserve that 2% and should keep it. The issues of a city filled with people, the issues of a town with a sizable population, and the issues of farms run by a few families can be just as crippling to all of us and should be treated equally regardless of how you or I see it.
Yes, they should be treated equally. Our getting 39 times the representation of a Californian, who may well live in a city or town of identical size, was not equal. This is irrelevant, however, because I'm not proposing elimination of the Senate. I brought that up only to show that our state interests were already represented at the national level to a far greater extent than what the Electoral College provided.

You're also making the assumption that issues of a city, town, or farms equally effect everyone who lives there, and that's patently untrue. To continue using Delaware as an example, drug and gun violence is very literally a life or death issue for an unfortunate quarter of our largest city's population, but because the violence is almost entirely concentrated in areas easily accessible from I-95 and in the worst neighborhoods, no one else has to care. This isn't unique to small cities - look at Chicago or New York. No population is a hive mind, and forcing people into categories based on where they live guarantees someone ends up as a minority with zero representation.
And are you saying that both the popular vote and electoral college are absolutely awful?
Where did I say anything negative about the popular vote? I've repeatedly explicitly endorsed using it.
On one hand you're saying that minorities suffer under the electoral college when another group is "outnumbered ~70/30 and therefore of no relevance to anyone". Do you honestly think a popular vote would suddenly make the 30% matter...? You're gonna tell me it's unfair that Wyoming determines the presidency because its population is split politically, but California should totally be allowed to overturn the entire Northeast?
It will make the 30% matter, because unlike in the 1790s, very few of the problems southern Delaware is upset about are actually unique to southern Delaware. They've got a heroin problem. The factories left. The local petroleum plants are spewing pollution. Their schools are hopeless. They have problems broadly identical to the problems of every other formerly industrial rural area, but unlike those in Ohio or Michigan, no national candidate has to care, because Delaware is never going red in anything other than an absolute landslide. Nobody needs to give a **** about them, and as you can see here,[url] nobody did. Despite having the norther ... ]39 states shared the same fate.

As for whether or not they'd get more representation in a popular vote, have you seen the towns in Florida and Ohio that get campaign stops? Candidates will absolutely stop to visit tiny populations when they actually matter, and in a close election, all of them do.

California and the Northeast aren't hive minds, either, and it's only the Electoral College that makes them look that way. 4.5 million people voted for Trump in California, and if you got them all in one municipality, they'd be [url="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U ... population]the second largest in America.[/url] By Politico's count, Trump received more votes in California than any state besides Florida and Texas. New York's 2.6 million Trump votes are, for their part, more than he received in Michigan or Wisconsin, and only barely less than what he got in Ohio. These people deserve presidential representation, as do the 3.8 million Clinton voters (her 4th highest total) in Texas.

Also, California couldn't overrule the Northeast. Every region can easily overrule California. We (you picked another place I live!) can overrule them in the current system, too - the Northeast has 62 EVs to California's 55. Even if it were true, we'd still have fourteen senators to their two and only barely be behind in the House, so hypothetically outweighing us in a national vote would hardly be devastating.
All problems we suffer under an electoral college will not be solved by a single flat popular vote across the country. In fact it might actually be worse in a lot of ways. Getting a different result sometimes is expected in a system like this, but if we really want to treat everyone equally and not just stomp our feet because "I coulda' won if this didn't happen" then we should be glad it defies the popular vote.
Since I have somehow not been clear enough: Trump won a fair election, I have no interest in changing the results, and I condemn any attempt to do so, as I did in the post that started this discussion. I'm not stomping my feet and saying Clinton would've won under a different system - I'm saying this system is an antidemocratic relic of a radically different time and that people's anger of the results of this election should be used to finally do away with it. I've held this position since 2000 election, and considering my age was a rounding error for the election prior to that, I'm willing to call that "as long as I could possibly have held it."

I also have to point out that treating "everyone" equally by weighting some people's votes more heavily is nonsense. You may consider it more fair according to your regional grouping and weighting of interests, but it is the definition of unequal.
We're 51 separate sections that make up a country, not one large hive minded clump
And what, those 51 regions are hive minds?

We're not 51 separate sections that make up a country, because neither of us are the physical embodiment of a state. We're 320 million individuals who have been group into 51 sections by circumstance and administrative convenience.
and literally everything about our government does relies on state level appeal from our politicians to the difference in taxes and living expenses. The differences between states is f**king staggering sometimes. So, If anything that gives minorities more of a voice as it shrinks the playing field down to different states and allows the issues of a state to matter just as much as the national issues.
The difference between counties is staggering sometimes. The difference between cities is staggering sometimes. The difference between individuals in the same house is staggering sometimes. This is why our votes should count for ourselves and as a drop in the vote bucket for an arbitrary grouping of us.
To remove that is to kill the individual's needs and makes it so only society at large matters. I don't know about you, but when I don't like that one group determines the election for a country my thought to fix it isn't "give all this power to another larger group located in another part of the country". That's not fixing anything.
How on earth does your solution fix this? The Electoral College makes it so only the state at large matters, even in the perfect universe where every EV is realistically equal.
How about getting rid of the winner take all rule? That would ensure that each section of a state gets to use their vote in the way they want and they're not "useless" to the process. It would be more accurate and it would greatly decrease the power of swing states while keeping the original intent of the Electoral College intact. Sure it's more complicated, but I'd like to think we'd get used to it.
Change "section" to "individual" and this is exactly what I'm proposing.[/url]

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Post by Random User » Sat Dec 17, 2016 2:08 pm

[QUOTE="Auron, post: 1616389, member: 28318"]This argument bothers me. Everyone always says "if we go by popular vote, than only NYC, LA, and Chicago will matter." I say ********. The population of this country is over 318 million. The population of those three cities is a little over 15 million. That means that those big cities that "have all the power" only account for 5% of the total population of this country. Oh how mighty they are. [/QUOTE]
I actually used this argument earlier in the topic when the subject of the electoral college came up, but I realized I was going strictly by official city limits rather than the greater metropolitan area surrounding cities.

Electoral college is still garb though.

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Post by I am nobody » Sat Dec 17, 2016 2:12 pm

^You still only get to about 40M going by metro area: http://www.iweblists.com/us/population/ ... eaPop.html

You have to take something around the top 60 metro areas on that list before you get to a majority, and even that assumes that they all vote the same way.

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Post by New! Tazy Ten » Sat Dec 17, 2016 3:51 pm

Auron, post: 1616389, member: 28318 wrote:This argument bothers me. Everyone always says "if we go by popular vote, than only NYC, LA, and Chicago will matter." I say ********. The population of this country is over 318 million. The population of those three cities is a little over 15 million. That means that those big cities that "have all the power" only account for 5% of the total population of this country. Oh how mighty they are.
I meant states not cities, but still someone has said that. I understand that it's incorrect.
And how many people in those cities do not even vote because they believe they won't be able to swing their own state? If you went by popular vote, perhaps more people in traditionally blue cities would be motivated to vote because they know that its not going to be flushed down the toilet due to the electoral system. Likewise for anyone living in the bible belt red states. How many people living out there don't even bother to vote because they know its going to go red anyways?
What if's and what could have been's. Who's to say they won't vote regardless due to sheer numbers? If anything, more people come out to vote for the election decided by the Electoral College then they do in elections that rely entirely on the popular vote. It's a non-factor.

Replace "California" with any state with the largest voter turn out and the same problem presents itself. They become one of the only states who's problems will get attention on the executive level.

Don't misunderstand me when I say that the popular vote isn't better than the electoral college. Electoral College isn't much better but it does what it's meant to do even when it's not always indicative of the country's final say. I think it needs to be improved, not dumped. Do the latter and we've solved nothing.


I am nobody, post: 1616391, member: 34539 wrote:Yes, they should be treated equally. Our getting 39 times the representation of a Californian, who may well live in a city or town of identical size, was not equal. This is irrelevant, however, because I'm not proposing elimination of the Senate. I brought that up only to show that our state interests were already represented at the national level to a far greater extent than what the Electoral College provided.
Delaware is represented in the legislative branch so they don't get to have a say in who the president becomes?
You're also making the assumption that issues of a city, town, or farms equally effect everyone who lives there, and that's patently untrue. To continue using Delaware as an example, drug and gun violence is very literally a life or death issue for an unfortunate quarter of our largest city's population, but because the violence is almost entirely concentrated in areas easily accessible from I-95 and in the worst neighborhoods, no one else has to care. This isn't unique to small cities - look at Chicago or New York. No population is a hive mind, and forcing people into categories based on where they live guarantees someone ends up as a minority with zero representation.
Except that even in a popular vote all the worst neighborhoods in the country wouldn't be enough to impact any vote at all.

Actually, the next part leads well enough into it so, let's skip ahead.

It will make the 30% matter, because unlike in the 1790s, very few of the problems southern Delaware is upset about are actually unique to southern Delaware. They've got a heroin problem. The factories left. The local petroleum plants are spewing pollution. Their schools are hopeless. They have problems broadly identical to the problems of every other formerly industrial rural area, but unlike those in Ohio or Michigan, no national candidate has to care, because Delaware is never going red in anything other than an absolute landslide. Nobody needs to give a **** about them, and as you can see here, nobody did. Despite having the northern population because exactly Clinton's base and the southern population being exactly Trump's base, neither of them made a single trip. After the conventions in 2012, 39 states shared the same fate.
...Well, first of all, your link blew up. It's kind of hard to figure out exactly what's said here? I'm assuming it's to prove candidates don't visit most of the states in the country.

So, in what world would changing the electoral college to a popular vote suddenly make 30% matter all of a sudden? That's where you contradict yourself. You're stating that the electoral college is horrible at representing each person's separate opinion but what you say destroys the popular vote in its crib. Because. It. Doesn't. Change. Anything. Minorites will still be ignored, problems will continue to fester in dark corners where no one will see them. Candidates will still skip states over because they don't matter and unless the popular vote somehow gives Delaware citizens five times the power of other voters, they're still not going to matter.
As for whether or not they'd get more representation in a popular vote, have you seen the towns in Florida and Ohio that get campaign stops? Candidates will absolutely stop to visit tiny populations when they actually matter, and in a close election, all of them do.
Not in a system where they only have to visit enough cities to overturn rural areas they don't. All we're doing is switching out one set of swing states for a series of swing cities. MAYBE there will be more states to visit, but small towns are gonna get the shaft especially in the long term. Let the largest population with the best voter turn out control who lives in the white house.
Also, California couldn't overrule the Northeast. Every region can easily overrule California. We (you picked another place I live!) can overrule them in the current system, too - the Northeast has 62 EVs to California's 55. Even if it were true, we'd still have fourteen senators to their two and only barely be behind in the House, so hypothetically outweighing us in a national vote would hardly be devastating.
I was kind of exaggerating. My point was that California has a much larger lead via a popular vote than it does via the electoral college. And I'm right on that at least. I did the math: In a popular vote, if everyone voted, California could overturn the decision of 22 states all on it's own. Compare that to the electoral college where it can overturn only 14 states by comparison. What's the difference when one allows a state to fight off a little less than half the country while the other can stop... a few of the smaller states dotted all around?

Though if there is one thing I'm going to applaud Congress for, it does well enough representing their respective districts on the state level. They gotta have something going for them.
Since I have somehow not been clear enough: Trump won a fair election, I have no interest in changing the results, and I condemn any attempt to do so, as I did in the post that started this discussion. I'm not stomping my feet and saying Clinton would've won under a different system - I'm saying this system is an antidemocratic relic of a radically different time and that people's anger of the results of this election should be used to finally do away with it. I've held this position since 2000 election, and considering my age was a rounding error for the election prior to that, I'm willing to call that "as long as I could possibly have held it."

I also have to point out that treating "everyone" equally by weighting some people's votes more heavily is nonsense. You may consider it more fair according to your regional grouping and weighting of interests, but it is the definition of unequal.
I admit that I brought a lot of anger into this subject. It... does happen sometimes. There's a disturbing amount of people, including people that should know how our system works, that honestly think you can overturn the electoral college and if you do it before someone takes office you can change the result. Some people are so desperate they're literally hanging onto anything they can to swing in Trump's direction. I'm not saying that you're doing that, and if you got that implication from me than I'm sorry. I'm always trying to improve my debating skills.

All I'm getting at is changing to a popular vote system would only change the undemocratic nature of the voting system rather than fix it, in my opinion. I'm not gonna repeat myself endlessly as that's annoying.
And what, those 51 regions are hive minds?

We're not 51 separate sections that make up a country, because neither of us are the physical embodiment of a state. We're 320 million individuals who have been group into 51 sections by circumstance and administrative convenience.

The difference between counties is staggering sometimes. The difference between cities is staggering sometimes. The difference between individuals in the same house is staggering sometimes. This is why our votes should count for ourselves and as a drop in the vote bucket for an arbitrary grouping of us.
Voting between two parties it might as well be. Changing to a popular vote will not in any way help the individual. It'll have an opposite effect: It'll strengthen this idea that you're either part of one hive mind or another and everything else will get lost in the abyss. Until we have a system that can accurately represent a diverse range of opinions, keeping the vote split by state is the best way I can think of to keep individual opinions relevant. Because a popular vote between Democrats, Republicans, and political parties given the same amount of respect as a 4chan joke and a meteor crushing us might as well be a step backwards compared to votes decided by Electors.

Here's hoping I don't have to reedit this. As enjoyable as this discourse is I'm literally skipping lunch to write this. :lol:

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Post by Auron » Sat Dec 17, 2016 4:06 pm

Is there really any way to slice it so that you appease both sides though? Popular vote makes people in lower density areas feel like they don't matter. The electoral college makes people in higher density areas feel like they don't matter. I live in the ass end of New York State, so I feel like my city doesn't matter either way. And having everything be winner take all makes it feel like the losing side does not matter, especially today where both sides are more divided than they've ever been. It'll take a much smarter person than me to be able to figure out how to fix this, and I know that that person is not the one who was just elected. Hell, the system has benefitted the Republicans twice in a very short period of time, so you know they won't even want to fix it.

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Post by I am nobody » Sat Dec 17, 2016 5:05 pm

Festivus Ten, post: 1616400, member: 19345 wrote: Delaware is represented in the legislative branch so they don't get to have a say in who the president becomes?
Come on, I didn't say that. Delaware is hilariously overrepresented in the Senate, so they're still punching above their raw numerical influence if they're reduced to being equal to everyone else in the presidential election.

(but even if I was saying that, we sure didn't have any practical say when I lived there, so there wouldn't be much to lose)

Except that even in a popular vote all the worst neighborhoods in the country wouldn't be enough to impact any vote at all.

Actually, the next part leads well enough into it so, let's skip ahead.
None of them will individually, no. But all of the worst neighborhoods collectively in every city and town in America represent a significant amount of people*, and many of them are facing broadly similar issues with police/drug/gun violence, bad schools, high rates of young or single parents, etc. I hope we can agree that there are definitely more than 3 million people living in all of the worst neighborhoods in the country, and that's all you'd need to swing the 2016 election. They'd be worth appealing to.
...Well, first of all, your link blew up. It's kind of hard to figure out exactly what's said here? I'm assuming it's to prove candidates don't visit most of the states in the country.
Derp, must've missed a url tag. First link showed that 96% of campaign events were in a handful of states and that the overwhelming majority didn't get any visit. Second was basically the same thing, but for 2012.
So, in what world would changing the electoral college to a popular vote suddenly make 30% matter all of a sudden? That's where you contradict yourself. You're stating that the electoral college is horrible at representing each person's separate opinion but what you say destroys the popular vote in its crib. Because. It. Doesn't. Change. Anything. Minorites will still be ignored, problems will continue to fester in dark corners where no one will see them. Candidates will still skip states over because they don't matter and unless the popular vote somehow gives Delaware citizens five times the power of other voters, they're still not going to matter.
All states don't matter in a popular vote system.

They key point of a popular vote is not that it's going to increase the power of Delawareans as Delawareans nor California Republicans as California Republicans. The point is that it allows Delawareans and California Republicans to have power as something other than their state or state/party identifier. When every vote everywhere matters, you care more that your opponent is leading by 10% among mothers concerned about education quality than you do that they're leading by 10% among New Hampshirites, because the first group is defined by common fears you can address, and the latter is a collection of people defined only by approximate co-location.

As an added bonus, you now care if your Republican opponent is leading among rural communities by 50% or if your Democratic opponent has the inner cities by 50%, because even if you still lose those communities horribly in every state, because any swing in those populations matters even if you're still crushed in every state where they're significant.

I wasn't clear about this in my previous post, and that's my fault, so I'll say it here: The 30% will not become more powerful as a Delaware minority - no one is going to campaign in Smyrna even if we only let Delaware vote. The value to Smyrnans is that they're individual priorities and circumstances have greatly increased power. They're still not going to talk about the Smyrnan vote on CNN, but they'll be included in discussions about appeals to farmers, small towns, etc.
Not in a system where they only have to visit enough cities to overturn rural areas they don't. All we're doing is switching out one set of swing states for a series of swing cities. MAYBE there will be more states to visit, but small towns are gonna get the shaft especially in the long term. Let the largest population with the best voter turn out control who lives in the white house.
https://www.census.gov/geo/reference/ua ... -2010.html
https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/

Roughly 90 million people lived in rural (<2,500) areas or urban clusters (2,500-50k) in 2010. Assuming they vote at about the same 20% rate that the country at large does, that's 18 million votes out of 60 million coming from areas that are clearly not cities. That's enough to swing every single election in our history, including Nixon's 23-point win over McGovern. There'd still be plenty of reason to appeal to them in any remotely competitive election.
I was kind of exaggerating. My point was that California has a much larger lead via a popular vote than it does via the electoral college. And I'm right on that at least. I did the math: In a popular vote, if everyone voted, California could overturn the decision of 22 states all on it's own. Compare that to the electoral college where it can overturn only 14 states by comparison. What's the difference when one allows a state to fight off a little less than half the country while the other can stop... a few of the smaller states dotted all around?
You're looking at the popular vote through an Electoral College lens - any 39 million people would be able to elect their choice over any number less than 39 million in a popular vote system, regardless of how many states either group comes from. It allows 1/8th of the country to fight off less than 1/8th of the country.
Voting between two parties it might as well be. Changing to a popular vote will not in any way help the individual. It'll have an opposite effect: It'll strengthen this idea that you're either part of one hive mind or another and everything else will get lost in the abyss. Until we have a system that can accurately represent a diverse range of opinions, keeping the vote split by state is the best way I can think of to keep individual opinions relevant. Because a popular vote between Democrats, Republicans, and political parties given the same amount of respect as a 4chan joke and a meteor crushing us might as well be a step backwards compared to votes decided by Electors.
How many people have you met who don't bother voting because their state is such a forgone conclusion that their vote is meaningless even in a competitive election? It will absolutely weaken the individual in swing states, but how do the rest of us not stand to gain? How do many of us, like California Republicans or Alabama Democrats, even have anything to lose?

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Post by X-3 » Sat Dec 17, 2016 10:53 pm

Okay, now this is kind of hilariously dumb.

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Post by New! Tazy Ten » Sun Dec 18, 2016 9:04 am

I see your point, and I freely admit that I might just be concerned over semantics. Still not sure if having a flat popular vote across the country is really gonna fix what's wrong with the process, but I think we've made our arguments. I'd rather not repeat myself and argue for arguing's sake especially when I'm not in much of a mood to go looking for sources.

You've given me more than a few things to think about. Although I'm not sure anything is going to change at the moment, I hope someone can start a discussion in the mainstream eventually that isn't looking to bend the election process one way or the other. That's really what I'm worried about more than anything.

Oh, I will answer this though. If only because it bothers me not to.
How many people have you met who don't bother voting because their state is such a forgone conclusion that their vote is meaningless even in a competitive election?
SmackDownPete didn't vote for mostly that reason. Though he also had to work all day on the 8th and he would have to go a few miles away to vote at all (He hasn't changed his address because he's lazy >_>). I registered this year and voted even though I knew it wouldn't accomplish much. Better to vote and not win then not vote and not win. You know.

Also I wanted to have an impact on local elections and laws that are technically far more important than who the president is.
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^ PFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF.

The f**king irony on this one given the hate we're thrusting at Russia right now. "We're gonna be independent with thanks to Russia! Give it up for Putin- AH! STOP THROWING BRICKS AT ME!"

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Post by Shane » Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:28 am

If you look at the current national vote count advantage, it can be described in one word. California. The voting there is so lopsided that the difference between the first place and second place candidate is larger than the total populations of almost half of the states in the country. This is why, on paper, the national popular vote movement should not have any chance of success, and why its only success so far has been in the most liberal places in the nation. They assume, perhaps rightly, that it would make every election a slam dunk. I would like to think that Americans are not dumb enough to leave any one party in charge for more than three or four election cycles, but I fear that they may be that dumb and more.
Now I know there's a reason you shouldn't blame others when you do something wrong, and that reason is: you might get caught and have to apologize to a bunch of dumb peasants.

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Post by I am nobody » Sun Dec 18, 2016 1:59 pm

Didn't seem to bother Nixon, Reagan, or first-term Bush Sr. much, considering they all carried it and won the vote, nor second term Bush Jr. who easily won the popular vote without it. 2000 was close enough that many states could have flipped the popular vote, and Obama would've won both his elections by 7 million and 2 million, respectively, even if you nuked California off the map. California isn't enough to flip 1996 to Dole, nor 1992 to Bush, it barely even matters in the 1988 popular vote, wasn't even 10% of Mondale's gap to Reagan, and wouldn't have helped Ford, Carter, or McGovern. It was almost enough in 1968, couldn't save Nixon in 1960, and before that, it never once came close to changing a popular vote election. Only twice in our entire history has California been enough.

Under the current system, it was instead Texas that flipped 2000 (also when many other states could have done so) and in 2016 (alone), and it would've sent 2004 to the House if Kerry won it. Any system is going to be sensitive to reasonably large groups being able to flip results in a close race. All the Electoral College accomplished was giving that power to 27 million people in Texas instead of 39 million in California.

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Post by X-3 » Sun Dec 18, 2016 7:23 pm

Maybe Republicans could try actually appealing to Americans, instead of blatant power grabs.

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Post by New! Tazy Ten » Sun Dec 18, 2016 9:21 pm

f**king us or them bulls**t killing this country I f**king swear.

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