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Reviews |  Republicans Can’t Stand To Lose


For much of the past decade, the Republican Party’s ability to win power in Washington has relied on the countermajoritarian institutions of American politics. There’s no President Donald Trump without the Electoral College, and Republicans wouldn’t have such a firm grip on the United States Senate if it weren’t for its unequal representation, which gives states so much clout. sparsely populated Great Plains and West Mountain. as is the case for states like New York, Illinois, California and Texas.

The Republican Party, in other words, doesn’t need to win majorities to gain control.

One result is that Republicans have developed a set of ideological justifications for why it is a good thing that the American political system violates fundamental principles of political equality, most often expressed in the assertion that states States are “a republic, not a democracy.”

Another result is that Republicans, having adopted countermajoritarianism as a principle, are now looking for ways to expand it. You see it in the emergence of the lunatic doctrine of the “independent state legislature,” which would give state legislatures full power to write rules for congressional elections and direct the nomination of presidential electors, unbound by state constitutions and free from the scrutiny of state courts. According to this doctrine, a Republican legislature could – with sufficient pretext (such as “voter fraud”) – unilaterally assign the state’s presidential voters to the candidate of its choice, beyond the voters’ will.

Some Republicans also want to extend the countermajority principle to the state level. In 2019, Arizona Republican Party Chairman Kelli Ward launched the idea of an “electoral college-type system” at the state level. More recently, Republican candidate for governor of Colorado, Greg Lopez, promised to eliminate “one person, one vote” for statewide elections and institute a system in which the votes of rural voters carry much more weight than voters in the cities and metropolitan areas of the state. He outlined his plan during a campaign stop earlier in the week:

“One of the things that I’m going to do, and I’ve already laid out this plan, is, as governor, I’m going to introduce a conversation about suppressing the popular vote for elected officials statewide and making a Le electoral college votes for statewide elected officials,” Lopez said. Lopez said his Electoral College plan would weight county votes by their voter turnout percentage to encourage turnout. “I already have the plan in place,” Lopez said. “The maximum a county can get is 11 Electoral College votes. The least a county can get is three.

Under that plan, according to the local CBS affiliate, Republicans in the state would have easily won the race for the previous governor, in 2018, despite losing the popular vote by 10 percentage points.



nytimes Gt

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