Monday, December 17, 2012

Republicans plot major electoral college changes

Reid Wilson has the scoop on one way the GOP is trying to regain an electoral college edge -- if you can't win, just change the rules of the game.

Essentially, some Republicans are trying to overhaul the winner-takes-all format in some Democratic states to a proportional allocation of electoral votes based on congressional district

Thus, Obama's 2012 sweep of Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan wouldn't net him 46 electoral votes, but instead, just 19.  Meanwhile, Romney would have won 26 electoral votes in those states!

Upshot? Romney would've emerged with more electoral votes in those states than Obama.

It's an incredibly cynical gambit, and I can't imagine it would be successful, but thanks to Republican legislative advantages in those states, it's actually something the party is working on.

The proposals, the senior GOP official said, are likely to come up in each state's legislative session in 2013. Bills have been drafted, and legislators are talking to party bosses to craft strategy.

Saul Anuzis, the former chairman of the Michigan Republican Party, has briefed Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus and Chief of Staff Jeff Larson on his state's proposal. The proposal "is not being met with the 'We can't do that' answer. It's being met with 'I've already got a bill started,' " the official said.

It's either a sign of political desperation or rank naivety to assume the ploy wouldn't provoke a colossal backlash, stretching far beyond a state's borders.

Imagine. Obama wins the popular vote in Michigan, PA, and Wisconsin, but Romney emerges with more electoral votes in those states. It's hard to imagine rending the political fabric any more completely than that.