States that sign on to the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact (NPVIC) are agreeing to award all their electoral votes to the presidential candidate who gets the most votes nationwide. It will take effect when the electoral vote total of member states reaches 270, the amount needed to win the presidency. As of this writing, 15 states and the District of Columbia have signed on, totaling 196 electoral votes. Unfortunately, many have spoken out against and continue to denounce this effort, which very simply applies equal weight to every single vote for president and sees to it that the country as a whole decides the presidency, as opposed to the existing farce of the same few swing states getting all the campaign attention and wielding all the power. Here are some key myths the anti-NPVers are either blindly accepting or actively pushing in an effort to derail the NPV movement:
IT'S JUST A BUNCH OF LIBERAL WHINERS WHO ARE MAD BECAUSE HILLARY LOST!
Actually, the NPVIC effort began in 2006, long before Clinton or Trump ran for president. It has nothing to do with political retribution. It's all about every vote actually counting nationally, and the true will of the people being reflected in presidential election results.
CALIFORNIA AND NEW YORK WILL DECIDE EVERY ELECTION WITH THIS PLAN!
First of all, to accept this claim you'd have to believe that everyone in each of these states votes the same way, which is not even close to true. Registered voters in California are 43% Democrat, 23% Republican and the rest are other parties or unaffiliated. New York is roughly 60/30 Democrat to Republican with the rest unaffiliated or other parties. Secondly, with the California/New York myth you'd have to believe that two states totaling eighteen percent of the American population can swing a nationwide popular vote. I've never been accused of being a math whiz, but still pretty sure that's mathematically impossible.
Another hollow argument. The top five cities (New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston and Philadelphia) make up just six percent of the American population. But hey, let's add up the top fifty cities just for the heck of it: Still only fifteen percent. Not nearly enough to decide an election, even if you accept the absurdity of everyone in all these cities voting the same way.
Actually, the Constitution specifically leaves the designation of electors and allocation of their votes up to the states themselves. States signing on to the NPVIC are simply choosing a new way to allocate their electoral votes, as they are perfectly free to do, precisely the same way they adopted the existing "winner take all" electoral vote method via their own legislation.
IMPOSSIBLE TO IMPLEMENT! NO OFFICIAL COUNT OF NATIONAL POPULAR VOTE!
Wrong again. Existing federal law requires states to certify their popular vote count and submit it to federal officials in the form of a document called the "Certificate of Ascertainment," which is then used to award each state's electoral votes. This very same process will happen under the NPVIC, with the only difference being all of each member state's electoral votes being awarded to the candidate with the highest national popular vote total.
This is a distinction without a difference. We are indeed a representative republic, but Democracy is the process through which our representatives are elected. The notion that the popular vote is okay for every elective office short of the presidency but wrong for the presidency itself is just more absolute nonsense.
A POPULAR VOTE FOR PRESIDENT IS MOB RULE!
The idea of American voters deciding the presidency with every vote actually counting toward the final result is not mob rule. It's the way Democracy is supposed to work. A better argument can be made that we're living under mob rule now, with a small minority of states deciding every election while the rest of the country is ignored, and a 535 member Congress with a median net worth of more that one million dollars (and some of them MUCH higher), with no term limits, serving the interests of the one percent at the expense of the rest of us.
CONGRESS HAS TO APPROVE INTERSTATE COMPACTS!
Not when the compact (and there are more than two hundred of them currently active) does not threaten the power or supremacy of the federal government, as the Supreme Court has previously ruled. And since the Constitution specifically leaves the process of designating electors and allocating their votes up to the states themselves, the right of states to change how they allocate their electoral votes is exclusive. You cannot threaten federal power that does not exist.
WE NEED TO RESPECT AND KEEP THE SYSTEM OUR FOUNDERS CREATED!
The NPVIC does not eliminate the Electoral College. It simply changes the way electoral votes are allocated. Which, again, is perfectly legal, constitutional, and a simple result of states exercising their exclusive power to determine for themselves how their electoral votes will be awarded. Additionally, the "winner take all" electoral vote format was not debated at the Constitutional Convention, nor is it mentioned in the Constitution. It was adopted in precisely the same manner being employed to adopt the NPVIC via each state's individual legislation. This "winner take all" method of allocating electoral votes is a total bastardization of Democracy, effectively throwing tens of millions of votes for the national office of President of the United States in the trash every four years, simply because they came up on the losing side in their state. Nobody who considers themselves an upstanding American citizen should be okay with tens of millions of voters of every political stripe being so blatantly disenfranchised in presidential elections.
Finally, a March 2018 a Pew Research Center poll revealed that 55% of Americans support replacing the Electoral College with a popular vote for president. The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact accomplishes this objective without a constitutional amendment, which requires a two thirds vote of Congress and ratification by three fourths of state legislatures (38 states). And not only can an amendment be defeated by a small minority, but hundreds of amendment proposals with the goal of abolishing or altering the Electoral College have already failed. It's long past time to try another way, and with the NPVIC we're already more than 70% of the way there.
Learn more and follow the effort:
National Popular Vote website
National Popular Vote on Facebook