I avoid political posts here on Bikecopblog for a number of reasons - mostly because what I have to say doesn't seem especially interesting, even to me. I am as inclined toward talking about current events as the next writer, perhaps less so than the pros, more so than others who have exciting, enriching things to do with their lives. So - fair warning, this is a departure of sorts. I'm writing because this law is an abomination.
The Colorado Legislature just voted approval of, and our governor signed into law, our inclusion into the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact. As near as I understand it, this legislation commands that the electors for the state - those votes commonly called the "Electoral College" that determine who will be president - will be chosen based on the national "Popular vote." In other words, if a majority of the voters of the State of Colorado choose Candidate A, but a majority of country-wide voters choose Candidate B, the Electoral Votes are - by law - cast for Candidate B.
Setting aside that this is clearly not the method contemplated in Article II of the Constitution, nor is it something the Framers envisioned or advocated...
Our country was founded on the principle that government derives its just powers from individuals who have a voice in creating the laws under which they are governed. "Taxation without representation" was the rallying cry of the generation who decided they were not all that into taking their orders from afar.
A great deal of evidence suggests that, in the last election, voter fraud existed in any number of polling places. Ineligible voters cast ballots, concocted ballots were counted. People have recently gone to jail for such things. In one district in Michigan, "voter discrepancies" led to a miscount, appearing to show that more votes were counted than individuals registered to vote.
How does all of this happen? In some cases, human frailty led to good faith clerical errors. In others, blatant partisanship has manipulated the process until it is a sham. Lax (or non-existent) enforcement of laws has allowed voting to be influenced, suppressed or artificially inflated.
A number of states are employing imaginative methods to increase voting. One such method, called "Ballot Harvesting," allows for collection of mail-in ballots by third party activists. California is one state that experimented with it in 2018.
Does ballot harvesting lead to voter fraud? While it is too soon to have a definitive answer, there is certainly enough evidence to merit further examination. But...
I have no say in how Californians are allowed to vote. Neither do I have any say - ANY SAY - in who is allowed to vote in California. People who are not eligible to vote under Colorado law surely could be given that right if the people of California decide to make it so. Yet...
In the great scheme of the Popular Vote Compact individuals permitted to vote in their state, who would be ineligible in mine, are counted with the same weight mine is, and as an accumulation will render my vote meaningless. A majority of eligible voters in Colorado could vote for one candidate, only to have State Electoral voters commanded to vote for someone else.
Before our legislature, one witness testified in support of The Compact, saying "(Candidate A) should be president." Of course, Both Candidate A and Candidate B campaigned knowing the rules and expended their limited resources to take advantage of the system as it presented. There is nothing to suggest, were the rules as The Compact envisions them, that Candidate B's campaign efforts would not have been as successful. There is only conjecture, and the disappointment felt by impassioned individuals who believed in their own causes.
The Constitution could be amended to make these changes. But, that is a cumbersome and chancy proposition. Better to circumvent the Constitution in an effort to... What?
That is the great unanswered question.