Wisconsin Republicans have taken a page from Pennsylvania, proposing to change the way the state awards electoral college votes. Like most states, Wisconsin is currently a winner-take-all system. But Republicans unveiled a plan that would change that to awarding electoral votes on a district-by-district approach. And just like Pennsylvania, the plan coincides with attempts to gerrymander the state into a permanent Republican majority.
The plan has been proposed by Rep. Dan LeMahieu, who has couched the dramatic change in the all-too-familiar rhetoric of preventing voter fraud.
Battle-hardened Democrats in the state are not buying it. State Rep. Kelda Roys is urging fellow legislators to not sign onto the plan. In an email to fellow Democrats in the state Assembly and Senate Roys call the plan what it is: a solution in search of a problem.
Now, there is plenty to critique in the electoral college system, but these plans do nothing to address those problems. Most glaringly, neither the changes proposed by Pennsylvania nor Wisconsin do anything to address the Bush v. Gore problem where a candidate receives a majority of votes from citizens but loses the presidency due to the electoral college votes. Perhaps most offensively, they are offered under ginned-up controversies fueled by partisan ambition rather than democratic ideals. Yes, this country needs election law reforms, but these are not it.
Photo from alancleaver_2000 via flickr.