Today’s U.S. Supreme Court Ruling Boosts National Popular Vote Plan

As already noted, today the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the state initiative process can be used to change laws affecting congressional elections. Rick Hasen notes today that Article II, which describes the presidency and presidential elections, also says, “the legislature” shall pass election laws concerning presidential elections. It says, “Each State shall appoint, in such manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors…”. Hasen notes that it now seems obvious that state initiatives can also amend state laws concerning presidential elections.

This is good news for the National Popular Vote movement, which has been trying for years to get state legislatures to pass the National Popular Vote Plan. The group has had some success, but is still not close to meeting the legal requirement that states holding a majority of the electoral college must sign up before the plan goes into effect. No state has passed the plan during 2015. The National Popular Vote organization has been mulling over using the initiative process to approve the plan in certain states. Now the group can feel confident that it is constitutional to use the initiative to advance its idea. Michigan is a state that has the initiative process, and which has a fairly large number of electoral votes, and in which the voters might plausibly approve the plan.


Comments

Today’s U.S. Supreme Court Ruling Boosts National Popular Vote Plan — 12 Comments

  1. The NPV stuff is one more leftwing subversive statutory type fix for a constitutional problem.
    Leftists LOVE having leftwing dictator Prezs.
    ——
    Const Amdt
    Uniform definition of Elector-Voter.

    P.R. and nonpartisan App.V.

  2. The U.S. Constitution says
    “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors . . .”
    The U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly characterized the authority of the state legislatures over the manner of awarding their electoral votes as “plenary” and “exclusive.”

    The normal way of changing the method of electing the President is not a federal constitutional amendment, but changes in state law.

    National Popular Vote is a nonpartisan coalition of legislators, scholars, constitutionalists and grassroots volunteers committed to preserving the Electoral College, while guaranteeing the presidency to the candidate who earns the most votes in all fifty states.

    National Popular Vote’s Advisory Board includes former Senators Jake Garn (R–UT), Birch Bayh (D–IN), and David Durenberger (R–MN); former Congressmen John Anderson (R–IL, I), John Buchanan (R–AL), Tom Campbell (R–CA), and Tom Downey (D–NY). Other supporters include former Senator Fred Thompson (R–TN), Gov. Jim Edgar (R–IL), Congressman Tom Tancredo (R-CO), Gov. Howard Dean (D–VT), and House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R–GA).

    http://www.NationalPopularVote.com

  3. Minor problems for the monarchists —

    1. Interstate compact needs the approval of the gerrymander Congress.

    2. Equal Protection Clause in 14th Amdt —
    having votes OUTSIDE of each sovereign State determine who gets Electoral College votes INSIDE each sovereign State.
    —-
    The current Electoral College is one of the EVIL 3 ANTI-Democracy gerrymander systesm in the USA regime — stuck over the State gerrymander regimes in 1789.

    i.e. now 226 years of USA minority rule gerrymanders.

    Each Prez is de facto elected by about 30 percemt of the total voters in about 28 States/DC — having 270 of 538 E.C. gerrymander votes.

  4. Congressional consent is not required for the National Popular Vote compact under prevailing U.S. Supreme Court rulings. However, because there would undoubtedly be time-consuming litigation about this aspect of the compact, National Popular Vote is working to introduce a bill in Congress for congressional consent.

    The U.S. Constitution provides:
    “No state shall, without the consent of Congress,… enter into any agreement or compact with another state….”

    Although this language may seem straight forward, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled, in 1893 and again in 1978, that the Compacts Clause can “not be read literally.” In deciding the 1978 case of U.S. Steel Corporation v. Multistate Tax Commission, the Court wrote:
    “Read literally, the Compact Clause would require the States to obtain congressional approval before entering into any agreement among themselves, irrespective of form, subject, duration, or interest to the United States.

    “The difficulties with such an interpretation were identified by Mr. Justice Field in his opinion for the Court in [the 1893 case] Virginia v. Tennessee. His conclusion [was] that the Clause could not be read literally [and this 1893 conclusion has been] approved in subsequent dicta.”

    Specifically, the Court’s 1893 ruling in Virginia v. Tennessee stated:
    “Looking at the clause in which the terms ‘compact’ or ‘agreement’ appear, it is evident that the prohibition is directed to the formation of any combination tending to the increase of political power in the states, which may encroach upon or interfere with the just supremacy of the United States.”

    Article II, Section 1, Clause 2 the U.S. Constitution is the state power involved in the National Popular Vote compact:
    “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors….”

    In the 1892 case of McPherson v. Blacker (146 U.S. 1), the Court wrote:
    “The appointment and mode of appointment of electors belong exclusively to the states under the constitution of the United States”

    The National Popular Vote compact would not “encroach upon or interfere with the just supremacy of the United States” because there is simply no federal power — much less federal supremacy — in the area of awarding of electoral votes in the first place.

  5. The Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment only restricts a given state in the manner it treats persons “within its jurisdiction.”

    “The bottom line is that the electors from those states who cast their ballot for the nationwide vote winner are completely accountable (to the extent that independent agents are ever accountable to anyone) to the people of those states. The National Popular Vote states aren’t delegating their Electoral College votes to voters outside the state; they have made a policy choice about the substantive intelligible criteria (i.e., national popularity) that they want to use to make their selection of electors. There is nothing in Article II (or elsewhere in the Constitution) that prevents them from making the decision that, in the Twenty-First Century, national voter popularity is a (or perhaps the) crucial factor in worthiness for the office of the President.”
    – Vikram David Amar – professor and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the UC Davis School of Law. Before becoming a professor, he clerked for Judge William A. Norris of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and for Justice Harry Blackmun at the Supreme Court of the United States.

  6. The Amur brothers are lawyers, and because they have concocted a clever scheme, they continue to advocate for it. Because something is legal or constitutional, does not mean that it is a good policy choice.

  7. Also – NO uniform definition of Elector-Voter in the NPV scheme from Hell.

    How many of the usual suspect leftwing State/DC regimes will be having children and foreign folks (esp. in Russia and China) voting for Prez/VP if the NPV scheme from Hell somehow takes effect ???

  8. Suppose Virginia had a majority Republican legislature and a Republican governor leading up to a presidential election, but its demographics were trending Democrat and it was very likely a Democratic presidential candidate would achieve a majority, thus taking all of Virginia’s electoral votes. Would it be legal for the Virginia legislature to pass a law saying its electoral votes would be awarded to whoever wins Alabama’s popular vote (pressumably, the Republican candidate)?

  9. GREETINGS TO DEMO REP, JIM RILEY & CHUCK MOULTON,

    FIRSTLY, OUR REPUBLIC IS DOOMED UNLESS A NEW NATIONAL INDEPENDENT POLITICAL PARTY IS ESTABLISHED ASAP

    I’VE BEEN WORKING ON A SOPHISTICATED INTERACTIVE INTERNET SOFTWARE SYSTEM CAPABLE OF ESTABLISHING A NATIONAL INDEPENDENT POLITICAL PARTY FOR SEVERAL YEARS.

    THE CURRENT POLITICAL CLIMATE REPRESENTS THE “PERFECT POLITICAL STORM” IN WITCH TO LAUNCH THIS AMBITIOUS INITIATIVE!!!

    IF YOU AND/OR ANYONE IS INTERESTED IN LEARNING MORE ABOUT:

    “SAVING OUR REPUBLIC”

    PLEASE CONTACT ME: stewart6143@yahoo.com

    REGARDING POSTINGS FROM “OTTO”!!!

    SIGHTING US SUPREME COURT RULINGS FROM 1892 & 1893 AS A JUSTIFICATION FOR LEGALLY CONFRONTING AND INTERPRETING THE 200+ YEARS OF POLITICAL GERRYMANDERING BY ALL THE “DONKEYS & ELEPHANTS” WHO PRESIDED OVER THESE RULINGS IS PURE INSANITY!!!

    OTTO, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND YOU MAKE AN EMERGENCY APPOINTMENT WITH YOUR PROCTOLOGIST AND GET YOUR HEAD EXAMINED!!

  10. Chuck Moulton

    Answer to your question –

    Yes. Check the constitution to confirm this.

    What’s your point?

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