Yesterday, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed legislation that adds New York to the list of states that seek to have an impact in making the National Popular Vote the standard for presidential elections.
New York currently represents 29 electoral votes. Under the National Popular Vote plan, states commit to cast all of their Electoral College votes for the candidate receiving the highest number of votes nationwide. The agreement would take effect only if the states joining this movement represent a total of 270 electoral votes. To date, the initiative has garnered 165 votes.
We do not want to repeat what happened in 2000, when Al Gore won the popular vote, but George W. Bush ended up taking the presidency thanks to the votes of the Electoral College.
The current system is not democratic. We need a method that counts each person’s vote and encourages voters in historically Democratic or Republican states to take part in a civic process on equal footing.
In other words, once the Union to pass this law, we are going to be able to elect our president collectively, based on who receives the most votes cast at the polls, and not who wins more states.
The current system segregates the power and attention of presidential campaigns on the so-called “swing states,” such as Iowa, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania.
As a society, we must demand this change for the sake of true democracy. Power must return to the voice of the people, and politicians must listen to it.