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If Nevada’s Democratic governor signs a bill passed by the state senate Tuesday into law, his state will have moved the National Popular Vote movement six votes closer to effectively nullifying the Electoral College as established in the U.S. Constitution.
By a vote of 12-8, the Nevada Senate passed AB 186 on Tuesday, which if signed by Gov. Steve Sisolak, will add Nevada’s six electoral votes to the 189 votes already pledged by 14 other states in the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, which would “guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes across all 50 states and the District of Columbia.” If triggered, the pact would override the majority decision of voters in particular states.
Thus far, 14 states and one district have officially passed the measure, their collective electoral vote total currently at 189. The compact requires a minimum of 270 total pledged electoral votes to go into effect. Should Sisolak sign the bill, the total would edge up to 195 votes.
The 15 jurisdictions, which are predominantly blue, that have signed on thus far are: California (55), Colorado (9), Connecticut (7), Delaware (3), the District of Columbia (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (20), Massachusetts (11), Maryland (10), New Jersey (14), New Mexico (5), New York (29), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), and Washington (12).
“The bill has passed one house in 9 additional states with 82 electoral votes (AR, AZ, ME, MI, MN, NC, NV, OK, OR), including a 40–16 vote in the Republican-controlled Arizona House and a 28–18 in Republican-controlled Oklahoma Senate, and been approved unanimously by committee votes in two additional Republican-controlled states with 26 electoral votes (GA, MO),” the National Popular Vote website explains.
As CNN underscores suggestively, the Electoral College “clinched President Donald Trump the 2016 presidential victory despite Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton winning a popular-vote majority by nearly 3 million votes.” Among the high-profile Democrats pushing for the elimination of the Electoral College are presidential candidates, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (MA), Sen. Kamala Harris (CA), and former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (TX), CNN notes.
Including Trump’s victory over Clinton, there have been a total of “five instances where a presidential candidate has been elected without winning the popular vote since the Electoral College was created in 1787,” The Hill reports.
In a video for PragerU (below), Electoral College expert Tara Ross explains the rationale behind the current U.S. presidential voting system and summarizes some of the arguments against the National Popular Vote agreement, including the impact of states’ widely varying voting policies, the exponentially increased threat of voter fraud, and the encouragement of presidential candidates neglecting the needs and concerns of rural areas and smaller states.
“If NPV is adopted, and winning is only about getting the most votes, a candidate might concentrate all of his efforts in the biggest cities, or the biggest states,” she argues. “We could see the end of presidential candidates who care about the needs and concerns of people in smaller states or outside of big cities.”
Video via PragerU: