26 September 2007

Dirty tricks?

I received this email from a lefty relative of mine:

Subject: They're already trying to steal the White House

Hi,

Republican operatives -- including some of the 2004 Swift Boaters -- are working on a proposition for the June ballot that would essentially hand over 20 of the state's electoral votes before the elections even begin next November.

Reject the Republican power grab in California:

http://www.democrats.org/DirtyTricks

Thanks.

So I went to the site to see what was up with this. Here is what I found:

Reject the Republican power grab

Republican operatives -- including some of the 2004 Swift Boaters -- are working on a proposition for the June ballot that would essentially hand over 20 of the state's electoral votes before the elections even begin next November.

Reject the Republican power grab in California:








Well, that sure did not tell me much more.

Now normally when I get an email that makes a provocative claim and has a link. the link contains information ... or at least more links ... to substantiate the claims that are being made. That is how an American Family Association email usually works, for instance.

But apparently the Democratic party is made up of such sheep that they will sign a petition without even knowing what this thing is about.

So I went looking. Turns out that some people think it would be a good idea to distribute the electors in the electoral college proportionately to the percentage of votes each candidate gets. They want to put this proposition on the ballot next June.

This is not a "dirty trick", it is not an "abuse of power", and it is not "corruption". (That is the caption on the Democratic website linked above.)

It is an attempt to let the people decide in a fair and open election how their electoral college votes will be allocated. It is a bad idea, though.

Two thoughts:

1. I believe it is a bad idea for California now (which might benefit Republicans) just as I believed it was a bad idea for Colorado in 2004, when it was advocated by Democrats. But to not push against this idea now without acknowledging that the Dems would do it in every Red State if they could get away with it is cynical and hypocritical.

2. The proposal is to let the people vote. Why do the Dems suddenly think letting people vote (by secret ballot) is a bad idea?

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