“It is enough that the people know there was an election. The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything.” – Joseph Stalin
One of the great ironies of our current election process is the manner in which the people’s focus is being shaped and contoured into a complete form of traumatized-blindness. The People will find themselves voting for an Individual who, if they were to encounter them on any street, they’d dare never to approach; one would observe them as distinctly unapproachable and intuitively, one would avoid them with absolute conviction.
The second great irony is the national misunderstanding of the process by which a U.S. President is, by Constitutional design, intended to be elected. The U.S. System of Government is not, as many think, a Direct Democracy but instead a Confederation of fifty independent States; representative-federalism more commonly known as a Republic. The Founders well understood the primary risks associated with a Direct Democracy;
- The risk of spontaneous and arbitrary impulse-action.
- The risk that calculated malfeasance could be easily expressed by a concentric majority. And thus,
- The need for decentralized power within the order by way of distinct and implicit boundaries and explicit enumerations of its vested authority.
Some will opine as to the democratic principal of “one man, one vote” as being the foundation of the American form of government but this would be a mistake. Equality of voter-representation is the principle to be achieved and we observe this principle in the manner by which the Senate is populated; each State has the same number of Senators which puts Montana and its eight-hundred thousand residents on equal footing with California’s thirty-three million. The same principal applies with the Judiciary; could one imaging the chaos of a Supreme Court subject to popular vote? Would we then consider the U.S. Senate’s absence of a disparate and incongruent allocation, when compared to the House of Representatives, as somehow unjust and irrelevant? These are but two examples for a reconsideration of the need for and the why the election of a President must never be based on the plurality of one-man, one-vote metrics; however more on this in a moment.
The function of direct-influence of a sovereign vote was deliberately left to the States and in the manner in which a State’s population selects their direct-representatives at the Federal level and by design, by way of the States Officials in Washington, the President was then determined. This representative function is the single purpose of the Electoral College and why it applies only to the election of the President; a position determined through the representative process, by each State, at the Federal level and any other way would not be faithful to the Constitutional Ideals implicit in is structure.
The equality of representation is built upon one simple rule of republicanism:
The representative will of the consenting governed through the tension of divided interest as a mechanism for checking selective and arbitrary bias of a majority over a minority.
To study, closely, the Founders wisdom we observe their insights in the design of the Federal Government and the U.S. Constitution: the Executive Branch, the Bi-cameral form of the Congress and the Judiciary all checked again in the arrangement of Federal and State interests. To move toward a direct-democracy would be to defeat the very balance that distinguishes the American form of government from all others; the Constitutional Ideal which is often thought of as separation of powers.
The tensions, by design, that arise out of the Electoral College System are deliberate; they are a check on the risk of plurality of impulse and the calculated malfeasance of a concentric majority. The Popular Vote (the aggregation of the one-man, one-vote) concept, particularly when applied to the Presidency, is supremely dangerous in any form of democracy however far more so in a republican form such as in the U.S. and specifically because of the Confederation of States and the manner in which each State conjoins its interests with other States about the construct which administrates the entire affair; the Federal Government. To approach the election of the President based solely on the Popular Vote concept is to void the very underpinnings of Representative-Constitutional Government and for the following reasons:
1. Places majority will over and above the sovereign right of the minority vote.
2. Places disproportionate value on States with larger populations and thus makes small population/States subservient.
3. Creates a forum for Inter-State conflicts due to unchecked polarity of interests.
4. Creates State-Voting Blocks that seed desperate interests adverse to the best interests of the national Confederation of States.
5. The Creation of State-Blocks enables Candidates to short-circuit the national interest of the individual States population’s representative interests. Candidates need only focus their efforts on States within the dominant voting-block.
6. Exposes the National Vote count to open manipulation thru the use of electronic capturing mechanisms which render authentication virtually impossible. This single issue-risk has recently been brought to the forefront with the acquisition of SOE, a Tampa (Fla.) based corporation supplying election software which presently records, counts, and reports the votes of Americans in twenty-six States and nine hundred jurisdictions across the country, by SCYTL a company that specializes in online voting. SCYTL’s primary base of operation is Barcelona, Spain. And, for now,
7. Endorses the expansion of State-by-State pacts, such as the current effort now underway known as the National Popular Vote Bill (NPV), whereby Constitutional provisions specific to Federal Elections are bypassed.
The NPV concept, offered as a solution to what is viewed as a defect in the Electoral College System, ignores the fact that whatever defects there may be have been caused by the ascension of political party maneuvers at the State level. The NPV process merely makes it worse and here is a brief summary of what the NPV Bill pledges to affect:
The NPV Bill nationalizes the Electoral Process by creating a State-by-State alliance whereby participating States agree to cast all of their electoral votes to the winner of the popular vote. The trigger for affecting the pledge occurs at the point where a sufficient number of States, possessing an aggregate of 270 Electoral College Voters (the minimum, at the moment, required to win the Presidency) agree to attach themselves to the Bill. Then, at the point that National Popular Vote is determined, the participating States agree to assign their Electoral College Votes to the winning Candidate. Sounds quite reasonable, doesn’t it? It is, of course, wrought with serious defects among them being:
- Those States joining the pact defeat the representative standing of those States who do not.
- A State with a higher population density gains superior positioning in the alliance adverse to the interests of the other States within the pact.
- If, as it appears likely, Presidential elections move toward an electronic vote capture system, the exposure to non-verifiable vote tabulation creates unforeseen security risks (a.k.a., vote fraud).
- NPV creates a national political electorate whereby the U.S. assumes a national political identity that directly voids the State-to-State representative function; it becomes no longer a State-based electoral process but a franchised national electorate.
- Every Presidential Election’s legitimacy would then be suspect; the direct result of a process which unilaterally alters federal elections without amending the Constitution.
- Imagine what would happen if, after the Popular Vote result is determined, a participating State decides, perhaps due to public protest, that the States pledging of their respective Electoral Votes is perceived as being adverse to the will of the people?
- Imagine the effects on this Nations cohesive bond should a President, by treaty or by executive order, subsume this Constitutional Republic to the entrails of a Global Bureaucracy? I shudder to think of the consequences.
While the American Public is drawn deeper into the quagmire of distrust they are also drawn further away from the ideals of constitutional government and its specific advantages. This occurs not from the defects of its design but more so from the abuses that have rendered it, increasingly, ineffective. The public has not yet come to grips with a tertiary irony which underscores the greater and more pervasive defect: the political organisms who are themselves entrapped by the very same ineffectiveness, supremely ignorant of the cause and seemingly possessing no interest in investigating below or beyond their mythical political orientation.
As always, the burden of perfecting the ideal remain where it rightfully belongs; in the hands of those willing to express their influence.
“Don’t buy a single vote more than necessary. I’ll be damned if I’m going to pay for a landslide.” – Joseph P. Kennedy
Curtis C. Greco, Founder