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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

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11/13/2012 11:14:00 AM
Governor wants to end electoral college
Gov. Jan Brewer:
Gov. Jan Brewer: " ... it's pretty disappointing when you think that just a few states really determine who's been elected president.'

Howard Fischer
Capitol Media Services

PHOENIX -- Tired of having Arizona ignored every four years, Gov. Jan Brewer said Friday she's coming around to believing it's time to scrap the electoral college.

Brewer said the system where the president is chosen by electors and not the popular vote probably "served its purpose' when it was made part of the original U.S. Constitution.

"But it's pretty disappointing when you think that just a few states really determine who's been elected president,' the governor said. "And they get all the attention.'

It comes down to pure numbers.

Each state gets two electoral votes for its senators, plus the number of representatives it has. So Arizona, despite its growing population, gets just 11 -- out of 538 nationwide.

So a state like Arizona, which also has been pretty much written off by both sides as a lock for Republicans, gets ignored. Brewer said she figures it would be different if candidates were competing for each and every vote in each and every state.

"If it was a popular vote, I think that all the states would receive attention,' she said.

And Brewer said she feels that way, even realizing that had the 2000 election been decided purely on the popular vote, Democrat Al Gore would have been elected president and not Republican George W. Bush.

"There's upsides and downsides,' she said.

Brewer said the issue goes beyond how much -- or little -- influence Arizona has in the presidential general election. She said the current system results in voters here believing it doesn't really matter how they vote for who is at the top of the ticket.

"I think the public, overwhelmingly from the people I've spoken to, they would like to know that their vote does count, and it was counted together with everybody else's vote, that they were part of that win,' Brewer said.

Still, the governor said that does not minimize the effort by her party in securing those 11 electoral votes for Mitt Romney, the nationwide results notwithstanding.

"We did our job here in Arizona,' she said.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Article comment by: Susan Anthony

A survey of Arizona voters showed 67% overall support for the idea that the President of the United States should be the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states.

By political affiliation, support for a national popular vote was 60% among Republicans, 79% among Democrats, and 57% among others.

By gender, support was 75% among women and 57% among men.

By age, support was 56% among 18-29 year olds, 65% among 30-45 year olds, 71% among 46-65 year olds, and 65% for those older than 65.

The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC).

The bill has passed 31 state legislative chambers in 21 states, and been enacted by 9 jurisdictions with 132 electoral votes - 49% of the 270 needed.


Posted: Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Article comment by: John A. Bond

"We did our job here in Arizona,' she said

Oh, yes, indeed, 623,000 untallied votes representing early votes and provisional ballots [the bulk of which represent minorities] and allegedly the state was delivered to Romney.

Nothing to be very proud of anyway, but clearly unless and until all of thosed votes are tallied we do not know for sure which candidate won Arizona.

Furthermore, consider all of the state, county and municipal elections affected by this failure to tally all of the votes.

Not to mention all of the propositions on the ballot that may come out differently after all of the votes are tallied.

Or, should I say IF they ever get tallied. The attitude seems to be, "oh, well, the election is over, the outcome decided so election officials can just ignore the fact so many people exercised their right to vote and had that right abbrogated by irresponsible election officials.

Was this GOP election fraud? Only time will tell.

I can agree with one thing Governor said, though, I think the electoral college is an atavistic process that should be done away with, too.

Posted: Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Article comment by: Phil Falbo

It is intriguing to try to figure out which hypocritical and/or duplicitous path our own little Wicked Witch of the West Brewer will follow.

If she is not ignoring the voted will of her constituents in Arizona, she is either pointing her twisted green fingers in the face of the US President or plotting with old Hit-and-run-Horne on ways to exercise her right-wing control.

Her latest ploy will be to try to circumvent the two-term limit law instituted by a past republicant Arizona Congress most likely put in place to prevent reelection of the then Democratic governor who had served a little more than two terms.

Now that she is goddess of the state and evilly lusts to maintain power-- as Margaret Houlihan once said on M.A.S.H. "Up with that I will not put!"

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