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Hot Topics Review: Make Every Vote Count

Diana Smith | Published on 11/5/2022

Hot Topics Nov. 9, 2022

Make Every Vote Count: How to Restore Fair and Trusted Presidential Elections”

Diana Smith

U.S. voters would be assured of better representation and politicians would have to move to the middle on policy issues if more states pass the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, said the chair of Floridians for National Popular Vote. 

Congress also needs to agree to the Electoral Count Reform Act of 2022, which would update state and federal roles to eliminate issues such as fake electors.

“This could actually happen,” Kathleen Crampton said in a Nov. 9 Hot Topics meeting sponsored by LWVOC. 

Already 15 states and the District of Columbia have approved the compact between the states, which would award all of their electoral votes to the presidential candidate who wins the overall popular vote in 50 states and D.C. Those states account for 195 electoral votes, and only 75 more electoral votes from additional states are needed to reach the 270 threshhold to elect a president in the Electoral College. 

“This is an idea whose time has come,” Crampton said.

The compact would insure that the will of the voters is acknowledged, strengthen confidence that voters’ voices are heard, increase voter turnout and force presidential candidates to campaign in all 50 states and D.C., instead of the 12 swing states where most campaigning occurs.

Votes in the other 38 states become disenfranchised because of the emphasis on swing states, she said. Politicians also would have to move to the middle and work on resolving policy issues because the vote is important in all states, not just the swing states that decide the Electoral College vote. 

“What everyone wants ultimately is for votes to count,” she said.

Meanwhile, Congress is considering legislation that would clean up legal ambiguities about the state and federal roles in elections and the Electoral College. The House voted in September to approve the Electoral Count Reform Act of 2022, and the legislation is before the Senate. 

Among other things, the bill would clarify the vice president’s role in the Electoral College vote count as ministerial and ensure that there is a single, conclusive slate of electors from each state. 

House Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has endorsed the changes, and the legislation is expected to pass with bipartisan support.