In Senator Jill Holtzman Vogel we trust? We’ll see…
The Virginia State Senate is up to fishy electoral business once again, just days after their underhanded maneuvering to force through a new redistricting plan, Republicans in the chamber are advancing a bill that would award the state’s electoral votes by congressional district. This would mean that the presidential candidate that wins the most votes in the particular congressional district, would receive that district’s single electoral vote.
This effort goes even further, as it appears that the two “extra” electoral votes (which correspond to the state’s U.S. senators) would go to the candidate that wins the most congressional districts in the presidential election, not the overall winner of the statewide popular vote (as is currently the case in Maine and Nebraska).
If this would have been the case last November, Governor Romney would have won a total of nine of Virginia’s electoral votes, while handing President Obama just four electoral votes from Virginia. This being the case, regardless of the fact that Obama clearly won the popular vote in Virginia, he would have ended up with just four out of a total of thirteen total electoral votes from Virginia. This scenario clearly is designed to take advantage of the fact that the majority of the state’s eleven congressional districts are mostly rural and considered pretty safe Republican territory.
This legislation appeared to be cruising towards becoming law, with Republican majorities in the State Senate and House of Delegates, along with the GOP claiming the Governor’s Mansion as well, but a rather unexpected major development happened. Our very own Republican senator, Jill Holtzman Vogel, sided against the legislation in a surprising subcommittee vote . While the measure is still likely to head to the Senate floor for a full vote, if Senator Jill Holtzman Vogel continues to defect (or any other Republican joins her), the scheme is doomed for failure, since the chamber is evenly divided between the two parties. A single dissenting vote, which could very well end up credited to Senator Vogel if she holds the line, would be a surprising and devastating blow to all but permanently sink to the measure.
This issue has a very wide and broad scope that would be of significant impact to all presidential elections moving forward and set a precedent, no doubt leading towards additional states playing copycats in initiating the same sort of potential Electoral College chaos that this legislation, still flying below the radar of most major media outlets has the potential to cause.
We look to Senator Vogel in being the ultimate protector of the future of our nation’s system of historic success vested upon the Electoral College process.