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The GOP / Republican's Plan to Rig the Next Election

Updated on June 19, 2013

So, obviously, November of last year did not quite go the way Republicans wanted it to. They lost by over 5 million votes and 126 electoral votes. That's a drubbing by any definition. How does a party usually come back from that? The rational response it to look at the statistics and determine how and why you lost. Some Republicans, such as Bobby Jindal, the Governor of Louisiana, Chris Christie, the Governor of New Jersey, and others are actively doing just that.

Some are up to something else entirely. Certain State-level congressional Republicans around the country (specifically in Virginia, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, which are all states Obama won) are seeking to change the way electoral votes are allotted. That is what I will delve into in this article.

The "Plan"

The obvious question is how exactly does their plan rig the election. Well, here's why. The proposed change is to the electoral process. Each candidate would receive electoral votes based upon how many congressional districts they won. In Virginia, two electoral votes would be given to the candidate who won the most districts. Statistically, Republicans tend to live in more rural areas.

Normally, this wouldn't have been catastrophic, but the Republicans gerrymandered (see my article about that for more info) the districts using redistricting that the majority is allowed to do in the House. This means that Obama would have won the popular vote, but lost the election. That's similar to the result of the 2012 House races. Democrats received nearly 1 million more votes, but the Republicans got more seats.

So, Republicans end up winning more districts, but usually lose the popular vote in states like Michigan, Wisconsin, Virginia, and Ohio, etc. Here's what the electoral map would've looked like had the gerrymandered district plan before the 2012 election.

The 2012 result using the Republicans "plan"
The 2012 result using the Republicans "plan" | Source

Yes, you saw that right. This "plan" of the Republicans would have changed the result of the election and Mitt Romney would have taken the oath of office last Monday. This is dangerous to our democracy and must be stopped.

Why This Must Be Defeated

This plan will change our electoral process forever, and not for the better. Some Republicans (included the RNC Chairman, Reince Priebus) see this as a way to come back to electoral prominence. Republicans have lost the popular vote in 5 of the last 6 elections. Instead of actually changing their views or just taking a hard look at why they lost, some are taking the sore loser approach. But, it is dangerous and can't just be shrugged off as a radical ploy. This is getting traction with many high-ranking Republicans.

The Good News

Luckily, there are sensible Republicans who see this as undermining our democracy. The Governor of Virginia, Bob McDonnell, has come out against the plan in the Virginia legislature. He's just one of many. Thankfully, there are Republicans who still respect the system like Former Mississippi Governor, Haley Barbour, who recently came out against it when talking with Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC.

The battle is not over, though. Michigan is the only state that actually looks like it will pass a bill enacting this electoral "reform." The more national attention this gets, the less likely it will happen. It's a shameless attempt to change the odds in your favor just because you lost badly last time.


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    • Steven Dison profile image

      Steven Dison 5 years ago from O'Fallon, Illinois

      Yeah, I expected it. Doesn't make the comments anymore rational, though.

    • profile image

      Jayfort 5 years ago

      And I used a common Liberal Progressive tactic of attacking the messenger instead of debating the message. (Well, I attacked both actually!) When you your trigger words in your title and/or your Hub, you can expect to receive some harsh comments in return.

    • Steven Dison profile image

      Steven Dison 5 years ago from O'Fallon, Illinois

      Well, factually, I never said they "suck." I will admit, however, that I was insinuating that *certain* Republicans were being sore losers. I did say that not all Republicans support this plan. But, it's not really that odd to expect a reasoned debate. Just because I proposed a point of view that is negative of some Republicans doesn't mean I have to defend everything Democrats have ever done. That's known as a logical fallacy. So, I just expect simple logic in the responses. I don't think that's too much to ask.

    • zeke2100 profile image

      zeke2100 5 years ago

      This article is not written in an unbiased way, so it is odd to think you will get a "reasoned" debate. Your article does insinuate that Republicans suck because they are being sore losers and rubbing it in that Republicans lost the election.

    • Arghness profile image

      Alistair 5 years ago from O'Fallon

      You really need to be a politician or a lawyer, you could steamroll the opposition if you wanted to!

    • Steven Dison profile image

      Steven Dison 5 years ago from O'Fallon, Illinois

      I think you're mistaking this post for "Hey, republicans suck, but here's why democrats are awesome!" I made it a point to have a section about how not all republicans support this (hell, a majority). So, I think you may be seeing my article from a partisan point of view. I'm simply pointing out that the plan that is proposed would greatly undermine our democracy if it were passed somehow.

      It's a logical fallacy that because I am criticizing republicans in this particular article, I have to defend everything democrats have done on this issue. It's simply short-sighted by you.

      Furthermore, it obviously changes things when the result is decided by congressional districts rather than by popular vote. If you can't see that, you might be drinking some form of kool-aid.

      My main point is that you seem to have assumed my whole political outlook based on this article. Would it surprise you if I said one of my favorite politicians is a Republican? His name is Chris Christie and its quite likely I'd vote for him in 2016. Am I still a liberal overall? Yes, but it clearly shows I'm more open minded than you seem to think based on your posts.

      So, can we drop this defensiveness and have a reasoned debate?

    • profile image

      Jayfort 5 years ago

      1) There are numerous approaches by the Left and the Right to alter the Electoral College.

      2) All but two state use "winner-takes-all" which does not accurately reflect the divergence between large cities and rural areas.

      3) Virtually all of the articles I found on this were on Left-leaning websites.

      4) This was attempted in 2012 and was squashed by GOP leaders.

      5) Yes, Steven. Please stop drinking the Kool-Aid. Please read the Constitution and US History without the Left-wing glasses.

    • Steven Dison profile image

      Steven Dison 5 years ago from O'Fallon, Illinois

      I'm not sure what kool-aid you're talking about because the "plan" the GOP congressional members in Virginia, Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin exists and we know what it does. I'm not saying this is supported by the majority of Republicans. Most support and respect the current system. This post is specifically about the proposal that is currently in the legislature in many of the swing states. You can choose whether to believe it or not, but it'll still be a fact that some Republicans are seeking to change the electoral system because they are quoted as saying such.

    • profile image

      Jayfort 5 years ago

      Please, put the Kool-Aid down and step away.

      Maybe you've never heard of the Democrat Chicago-style voting method? Vote early, vote often, and don't forget to vote the graveyard!

    • Arghness profile image

      Alistair 5 years ago from O'Fallon

      No way dude. Republicans would never use such cheap and underhanded techniques to get an election to go their way!


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