« a few words about the filibuster | Main | Tangential thoughts from RGB to Arthur Ashe »

September 22, 2020

Comments

well the founding fathers disagree with you. So do I. There is no logic that says six population centers should set policy for all the other people in the country. They get two Senators like everyone else, and more EC votes.

The reason slaves got counted at 3/5ths wasn't just slavery. The people in the country didn't want to be at the mercy of the cities, 20p years ago. That still makes sense.

15 million people is less tha 5 %, spread across 50 states, probably concentrated in 5. The Presidential difference was smaller than that.

Saying 15m sounds big until you consider how many are concentrated in so few places.

The founders thought that only white men with property should vote.

I'm also pretty sure that women, people of color, and non-Christians live in states with smaller populations.

My point overall, and apparently my theme for the day, is that rule by minority interest is not sustainable.

Cities don't vote. People in cities vote.

Marty thinks he deserves to be more of a person than me.

It's been his most consistent policy position.

He's still in favor of the 3/5ths rule, he's just not colorist about it.

nous, exactly.

There we go, and here we are.

A little something for those who have been getting exercised about "defund police": At Trump's direction, Bill Barr is trying to defund the police. The Justice Department on Monday labeled the cities of Portland, Ore., New York and Seattle as "anarchist jurisdictions that have permitted violence and destruction of property," targeting them for possible cuts in federal funding,

Real, unequivocal defunding for police. And actually being done, not just talked about. Interesting.

One thing it is not is "interesting".

Unless you believe confederate militias firing on Fort Sumter was merely "interesting".

I found it interesting as yet another of example of how you can predict Trump bad behavior simply by seeing what he is (usually baselessly) accusing opponents of doing.

There is no logic that says six population centers should set policy for all the other people in the country.

The flip side of this is, there is even less logic that says people in WY or KY or KS or whatever other small states you want to name can set policy for the hundreds of millions of people who don't live in those places.

The people represented by Trump and by the (R)'s in Congress - the people who voted for them - are entitled to a voice in governance. They are not entitled to rule. They are not entitled to thwart every other voice and point of view.

I have the "at the mercy of the cities" conversation with my sister now and then. She doesn't want to be at the mercy of the people who live in the big cities.

She lives in Phoenix. Metro Phoenix is something like 4.1 million people. It's the 10th largest metro area in the country.

So I'm at a loss to explain who the "people in the cities" are that she is disturbed by. Or what it is they are doing that disturbs her, other than moving to Phoenix from somewhere else, just like she and her husband did 40 years ago.

If you don't like cities, don't live in one. If you want to be left alone, move to the country. People do it. I know people who do it. City people aren't bugging them.

If you want to be utterly unaffected by the interests or actions of anybody else in the country, however, you're probably not gonna get your wish.

I don't. None of the people living in the big scary cities do, either. Nobody does.

She lives in Phoenix. Metro Phoenix is something like 4.1 million people. It's the 10th largest metro area in the country.

So I'm at a loss to explain who the "people in the cities" are that she is disturbed by.

Not to put words in her mouth, of course. But there really only seem to be two groups those "people in the cities" might actually be:
1) black people,
2) liberal people.

Of course, there are increasing numbers of both in Phoenix. So those living there who are disturbed by them will have to adjust. Or rephrase their view so as to justify restricting voting in their state. (And it appears that that ship has sailed. Or, at least, cast off from the dock.)

In my sister's case, I don't think skin color comes into it.

Liberal people, yes.

But mostly I think it's just people from CA.

Shorter Marty: R votes should count for more than D votes, otherwise the party which represents fewer people couldn't win elections.

https://washingtonmonthly.com/2020/09/23/donald-trumps-favorite-voting-machines/

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2020/11/what-if-trump-refuses-concede/616424/

Do NOT steal this election, conservatives.

If you do, or even try, each one of you and your children will be held culpable for the savage violent vengeance that is wrought and the death of America.

Trump and his conservative lackeys and the do-nothing both-sides-do-it excusers of EVIL will cease and desist NOW.

Stop.

Now.

Marty,

Your argument would make sense in the EU. European Union is a confederation of multiple countries, with widely separate cultures, their own militaries and actual sovereignty. There, it makes sense that each state actually requires its own share of decision-making power as a state simply because it could decide to be fully independent.

In the US, most states are artificial creations of the federal government, and even the originally independent states are not really sovereign nor have a sense of being separate nations. This is also reflected in the national politics, where opinion differences of national level issues dominate state-level concerns.

And even in EU, the power distribution between the states is much more democratic than in the US. The Council, which is the upper house of our legislature, votes with a system where every delegate has votes in accordance to their country's population. To get a decision, 55 % of the countries, representing 65 % of the population must vote for it. This is a good and tried system: the German League, and the upper houses of German legislatures since 1867 have used variations of it.

There is no logic that says six population centers should set policy for all the other people in the country.

deliberate discrimination based on residence.

at least you're honest about it.

"The people in the country on the reservation didn't want to be at the mercy of the cities, 20p years ago. That still makes sense."

Therefore every Native American should have 30 million votes.

when i grow up i want to be a barren parcel of land which conveys over-representation upon whomever squats on me.

"This is also reflected in the national politics, where opinion differences of national level issues dominate state-level concerns."

This is only true because of the completely invalid assumptions about the makeup of our states. Most were admitted or created/admitted based on some sense of regional identification. State identity is somewhat tamped by the transient nature of some people, but NC, Mass, Texas. certainly still have strong state identification, as do all states. Our system works fine. If the Dems get in charge you will never here of this issue again.

Our system works fine.

Donald Trump is our POTUS. He's enacted inhumane policies against desperate, powerless immigrants, has completely fumbled the response to a global pandemic, leaving more than 200K Americans dead and counting, has stoked racial and cultural divisions and encouraged armed white supremacists, has severely diminished the country's standing in the global community, has turned the justice department into a political weapon, and has generally debased the ethical standards and the decorum we should expect from someone holding national high office (or even a small-town mayor).

And now we have QAnon adherents running for office.

it's fine because it lets an overrepresented minority tyrannize the majority. just as John Adams intended.

Marty would certainly not complain at all if the representation were on the other foot.

If the Dems get in charge you will never here of this issue again.

True 'dat...right after we confiscate all your guns, obliterate all state lines, abolish ICE and customs and open the borders (like it was in the good old days), grant all power to the President (just like the GOP wants!), dismantle our armed forces, defund the police, make rioting legal, open the jails, make abortions mandatory, condemn all straight white males to re-education camps, and abolish the system of private property, and mandate the transfer of all of our wealth to blacks, Native Americans, and some Hispanics (if deemed worthy).

So yes, arguments about malapportionment will be small potatoes....hardly worth discussing.

If all that were factually true hsh, then in a working system he would be voted out in a few weeks.

So we will see right?

If the Dems get in charge you will never here of this issue again.

maybe not.

and since the (D)'s appear to be more closely representative of the population - i.e., We The People - that might be appropriate.

in a working system he would be voted out in a few weeks.

yes, in a working system, he would be gone as of January 2021. and I note that hsh omitted tax cheat and fraudster, obstructor of justice, violator of election rules, and liar. also, ignoramus.

so yes, we'll see. we'll find out a lot of things come November.

The Republican line is that if the constitution says it OK, anything goes.

Except they want a permanent majority on the SC to say what the Constitution says.

If the Dems get in charge you will never here of this issue again.

Also, I'm not sure what you think "the issue" is, is accurate.

My point here is not that the Senate per se is unrepresentative. It is, but that's not what I'm trying to call out here.

My point is that the (R) party is abusing the structure of government defined by our Constitution to impose minority rule.

They do not represent most people in this country. Yet, they choose to govern as if they speak for most people in this country. As if they had the legitimacy that would come with speaking for most people in this country.

They do not have that legitimacy.

The situation as it stands is not sustainable.

The Republican line is that if the constitution says it OK, anything goes.

Except they want a permanent majority on the SC to say what the Constitution says.

heads: i win.
tails: fuck you.

If all that were factually true hsh, then in a working system he would be voted out in a few weeks.

Or, in a working system, such an obvious malevolent fraud would never get to the highest office in the land in the first place.

The reason slaves got counted as 3/5th's was not to limit the power of cities, but to limit the disproportionate power of rural slaveholding states. They originally wanted their enslaved people to count as whole persons for the purpose of representation. The compromise was 3/5th's in order to get buy-in to the Constitution.

Funny that this would pop up not only when discussing how representative congress is of the nation, but after russell mentions his sister who lives in Phoenix.

https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/517701-how-fast-population-growth-made-arizona-a-swing-state

We've had previous discussions about the advantage rural states have in senate representation and the electoral college, during which someone or other has suggested (only half seriously?) that people from NY or CA move to places like Wyoming and take over the state politically.

I don't think people have moved to AZ for political reasons, but they're taking over politically none the less.

Closing the registration gap helped Democrats make substantial gains in the 2018 midterm elections, when Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D) became the state’s first Democratic senator in a generation. Democrats hold five of Arizona’s nine seats in the House, and Democrat Mark Kelly leads Sen. Martha McSally (R) in a special election for what was once the late Sen. John McCain’s (R) seat.

Arizona’s electoral votes now sit at the center of the battle for the White House, as both President Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden pour millions into television advertisements in the Phoenix and Tucson media markets. Trump, Vice President Pence and second lady Karen Pence all visited the Phoenix metro area last week.

Four years ago, Trump won Arizona’s 11 electoral votes with just 48 percent of the vote, the lowest vote share for a Republican candidate since Bob Dole lost the state in 1996.

This year, polls show Biden leading. Seven public surveys conducted in September show Biden ahead by 2 to 10 points; Biden topped 50 percent support in two of those polls. Biden leads by substantial margins among white voters with a college degree and among voters in the Phoenix area, home to about two-thirds of Arizona’s voters.

Barry Goldwater has non-zero angular velocity in his burial chamber.

Our legislative bodies, from bottom to top, favor people who are older and wealthier, hence more likely male and white. It's not necessarily intentional or evil, it's that young people trying to build professional careers or hourly wage slaves just can't afford to take six months off work to campaign, or two years off work to serve a term, or twelve years to serve several. As I used to say when I was a state legislative staffer, the system makes it possible for a ranch owner to run but not for a ranch hand. I have no idea how to fix that fundamental problem.

here is what appears, to me, to be a fact of life:

areas with high population density tend to be more "liberal", in the sense of supporting a larger role for government in daily life.

areas with low population density, the opposite.

it makes sense for places with high population density to provide basic services through public initiative, because everybody doing everything for themselves doesn't scale well.

it makes sense for places with low population density to not expect government to do all of that, because it's less practical for government to do all of that in that context.

people should live where they want. people should live how they want.

maybe the interests of people in the big cities are running roughshod over those in the country in ways that totally outstrip the other way around, but if so, I'm not seeing it.

maybe somebody can enlighten me.

in the meantime, I'd like the (R)'s to have their hold on the executive and their majority in the Senate removed. so that we can get on with the million other things that need doing.

Clone AOC ?

From The Atlantic, h/t Balloon-Juice:

"According to sources in the Republican Party at the state and national levels, the Trump campaign is discussing contingency plans to bypass election results and appoint loyal electors in battleground states where Republicans hold the legislative majority.

"With a justification based on claims of rampant fraud, Trump would ask state legislators to set aside the popular vote and exercise their power to choose a slate of electors directly. The longer Trump succeeds in keeping the vote count in doubt, the more pressure legislators will feel to act before the safe-harbor deadline expires."

Trump would ask state legislators to set aside the popular vote

this is how you get a civil war.

i know where the closest gun store is.

Casey:

Then savage civil war it is.

The both-sides-do-it crowd, from their immaculate perches high above the fray, can look down on the carnage and see if the number of dead ham sandwiches precisely equals the number of dead election-stealing subhuman fascist combovers and we'll just have to continue the slaughter until the death toll is precisely even so they can gloat afterwards.

America will be a smoking rubble.

Trump in 2016:

"How will he decide when the time comes? Trump has answered that, actually. At a rally in Delaware, Ohio, in the closing days of the 2016 campaign, he began his performance with a signal of breaking news. “Ladies and gentlemen, I want to make a major announcement today. I would like to promise and pledge to all of my voters and supporters, and to all the people of the United States, that I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election.” He paused, then made three sharp thrusts of his forefinger to punctuate the next words: “If … I … win!” Only then did he stretch his lips in a simulacrum of a smile."

I attended college in Delaware, Ohio, back when we had the guts to shut down vermin conservative fascism in that little town.

The gun stores, nearly all of them, are run by conservative scum.

Trump and Barr and fake murderous christian Pence will order them to decline all sales to anyone except their fellow political vermin.

All permits at the federal level will be screened to determine political affiliation as much as possible.

We're dead.

Trump would ask state legislators to set aside the popular vote and exercise their power to choose a slate of electors directly.

US Constitution, Article II.


Each state shall appoint, in such manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a number of electors, equal to the whole number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress

I believe this clause is still operative. If so, it could well be that what is described in Casey's cite would pass legal and constitutional muster. Or at least close enough to completely FUBAR the outcome.

This is why it is time for the Electoral College to be removed. Whatever value or merit it ever had is no longer relevant. At this point, it is a lever that allows an extremely small and unrepresentative slice of the population to determine who sits in the White House.

Tens of thousands of voters, in a handful of swing states, elect the POTUS.

I have no idea if what the Atlantic is reporting is true or not. True or not, I find it credible, because it's entirely consistent with Trump's character, and with the behavior of the (R) party.

If they want to burn the whole fucking thing down, they are welcome to try this on.

We'll find out all kinds of things in November.

The gun stores, nearly all of them, are run by conservative scum.

curbside pickup at Dick's !

Furthermore, Trump will by executive order deny all blue states and cities the Covid-19 vaccines, whenever they come to be.

He may even order that areas of the country he deems his mortal enemies will be sent placebo vaccines instead, the better to improve his conservative vote counts in 2022, 2024, 2026, 2028 and on ... until savage violence erupts.

my own feeling about all of this talk of civil war is that I'll be damned if I will get shot, or will shoot anybody else, over Donald J Trump.

there are, undoubtedly, better paths forward available. at a minimum, other paths. while they still exist, I'm not interested in killing anybody.

There is nothing in the Constitution to prevent Trump and the Republican Party from stealing an American Presidential election.

On the other hand, there is nothing in the Constitution that prevents the violent overthrow of a corruptly malignant government that seizes power via stolen elections.

Get this, we are living in a moment, this very moment, when the very institution that can arrest us for tampering with or destroying the US Mail is the very institution that has been ordered to tamper with and destroy the US Mail.

McKinney Texas asked the other day what will we have left if we continue down this road.

We will have nothing.

No, Madam, you don't deserve to keep it if you allow brigands to keep pissing on it.

Does Dick's provide curbside pickups of nuclear warheads?

Or do I have to depend on the fucking corrupted US Post Office to steal those?

Cease and desist Republican Party, today, not tomorrow, not November 2, not November 4, not Inauguration Day 2021, right this fucking minute, because you will not like it when both sides actually DO do it.

How Americans murder their fellow Americans:

https://www.thedailybeast.com/number-of-states-reporting-covid-19-surges-more-than-doubles-in-one-week?via=newsletter&source=CSAMedition

.... while practicing their murderous fake Christian and Randian/Friedman prosperity gospel:

https://www.thedailybeast.com/xtreme-manufacturing-company-fined-for-indoor-trump-rally-cashes-in-on-covid-19?via=newsletter&source=DDMorning

https://www.thedailybeast.com/chris-young-show-south-dakotas-next-potential-coronavirus-superspreader-event-sponsored-by-sanford-health

Throw in a little child pornography and you have the perfect setup for QAnon and republican accomplices to commit mass murder, when they are the ones who should be slaughtered.

. To get a decision, 55 % of the countries, representing 65 % of the population must vote for it.

I rather liked this detail that Lu offered up about the EU. If the senate did that (perhaps with a tweak to the numbers) we'd have a much more representative system. And, I suspect, less obstructionism. Ranked choice voting might be helpful -- just by forcing people at the state level to work on achieving co-operation with those around them.

From what I've seen, people fall for some obvious bullsh*t with alarming regularity. And it's not exclusive to people on the right, though it appears to be significantly worse on the right than the left (if I can be so binary for the sake of simplicity)

That's one of the things that's changed ober my lifetime. When I was in college, it was the left buying obvious bull. The good news is, that means the right could get over it, to a significant degree, too. (Perhaps those who made the relocation from left bull to right bull will now move on to libertarian bull. Seems at least as natural a fit.)

The compromise was 3/5th's in order to get buy-in to the Constitution.

At the time the founders thought support for slavery would diminish and it would eventually end. What they couldn't foresee was the invention of the cotton gin and how it would leverage slavery.

"At the time the founders thought support for slavery would diminish and it would eventually end. What they couldn't foresee was the invention of the cotton gin and how it would leverage slavery."

Then so much for Originalism, since they thought the original would pass.

The Founders couldn't find their asses with both hands.

Perfectly understandable, they being products of their times. Great thinkers, no doubt about it.

They happened upon the eternal in various places, but those were just educated guesses.

Money talks with protected speech was NOT an eternal finding. Carrying modern military weaponry in public, or even possessing it, was not an eternal finding, nor was it foreseen, despite the vague similarity between a bullet and a comma.

So, why is that document, which is going to permit the stealing of a Presidential election in 2020, and has been permitting gross unconstitutional corruption without interruption or petition by this lout, judging me after all this time.

If Socrates had been a Founder, does that mean we would keep swallowing hemlock, or Novichok as the case may be, every time a tyrant like Trump and his branded conservative movement say so?

Just to preserve an order that doesn't deserve to be preserved and we ASSUME may pass on its own, like slavery.

Also right on cue:

https://fivethirtyeight.com/videos/think-the-electoral-college-is-unfair-to-democrats-try-the-senate/

No excerpts. It's a video (only 2.5 minutes).

One thing I can describe is that they use four categories - urban, suburban, exurban, and rural - for the population. They each comprise roughly a quarter of the population, with urban and rural each comprising 25% (exactly a quarter, but I'm sure rounded to a whole-number percentage).

Suburban and exurban populations are roughly represented in proportion to the percentages of the total population they include. But urban voters get only 14% of the representation, while rural voters get 35%. That's cool with Marty and John Adams, I guess.

All Men are created equal, but their effective equality decreases as their proximity to other Men increases.

That's just the way it is, libs.

Also right on cue

I have a different idea, maybe a better idea, than adding new states, trying to convince people from urban areas to Montana, or any of the other suggestions Silver makes in the video.

(D)'s need to get out into rural areas of the country and argue for why their policies are better than (R)'s.

Republican policies are not actually that great for rural voters. Democrats can argue for universal broadband, health and education services, support for small farmers, support for people who are not currently farmers but might like to be. Democrats support action on climate change, which will be nothing but good for the stability of agriculture. Democrats can argue for best environmental practices in agriculture, which helps small farmers and farmers who actually want to maintain the productive quality of the land.

Rural areas are underserved. (R)'s offer culture wars. (D)'s can offer services, because they aren't afraid of an active government.

If the DNC had been paying attention to blue-collar and rural communities in 2016, we would not be in this mess.

It would not take flipping all that many seats to get the (D)'s an enduring majority in both the House and the Senate.

Focus on that. It's an easier, cheaper, and more enduring goal than adding states.

Not saying that states should or should not be added, just saying that that should happen on its own merits.

I was more focused on the current math of representation than the "solutions" suggested. Silver did mention, very briefly, convincing rural voters to vote D, but pretty much blew it off as "having a cost."

My guess is he goes into the other stuff because it's illustrative of how the math works.

I was more focused on the current math of representation

Yes, the Senate is, inherently and by design, undemocratic.

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Maybe it still is, maybe it isn't, but unless we want to tear up the Constitution and start over with a clean sheet of paper, it's not going away.

(D)'s need to win more Senate races. They won't win more Senate races if they don't build a constituency in the states where they currently don't have one.

Nothing stops them from building that constituency. They won't win over everybody, and they don't need to. They need to persuade some. And that is do-able.

I'll also note that urban and suburban communities are not inherently magically (D). I grew up mostly in Suffolk County, on Long Island in NY. That is absolutely in the NYC orbit, and is Trump territory now.

See also Staten Island.

All kinds of people live everywhere. The (D)'s have, in my opinion, neglected blue collar and rural communities. Not in terms of policy, but in terms of showing up.

That is fixable.

hsh. Thats not a working system, it would be a perfect system. Trump isn't the first bad President we've hsd.

Trump isn't the first bad President we've hsd.

He's far worse than anyone in the modern era, and probably the worst ever that was actually elected. (Andrew Johnson might have been as bad, but he was anointed by John Wilkes Booth.)

They won't win more Senate races if they don't build a constituency in the states where they currently don't have one.

There actually isn't a state where they don't have one. Even Wyoming has a substantial Democratic constituency. (West Virginia, the next reddest, already has a D Senator. Although that's probably an anomaly. Albeit one that helps.) So they wouldn't be starting building something from scratch. Just expanding on what they already have. Which is much more doable.

I very seriously considered moving to a Red area when I retire, mostly because those areas are far less expensive.

But since the RWNJs and GOPers in general have gone entirely off the deep end, I no longer feel safe (single Jewish woman, very liberal, unwilling to suffer fools at all) doing so. Now I'm confining my acceptable non-liberal geography to bluish-purple.

Trump isn't the first bad President we've hsd.

he might be the first one to float the idea that Russia's intel services are better than our own; or that he might not leave the WH if he doesn't feel like it; or that he's working to "bypass election results".

but still, Democrats, amirite?

Re the FiveThirtyEight numbers... I pulled down their table and sorted it based on the sum of the urban plus suburban numbers. The top 20 are dominated by the 13-state West and the 12-state Northeast urban corridor (two from the South, two from the Midwest, eight each from the West and the urban corridor). Top four in order are California, Nevada, New Jersey, and New York. IIRC those four are also the densest using the Census Bureau's new "built area" statistics.

Trump won only five of those top 20 in 2016, and Biden is currently leading in the polls in three of those.

President Donald Trump predicted that the U.S. Supreme Court will decide the outcome of the November election and argued the Senate should confirm his nominee to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to break any tie.

“I think this will end up in the Supreme Court and I think it’s very important that we have nine justices, and I think the system’s going to go very quickly,” Trump said Wednesday at the White House, after criticizing the legitimacy of mail-in voting.

but them Democrats, amirite?

Trump isn't the first bad President we've hsd.

LOL

Trump isn't the first bad President we've had.

This is certainly true. But it is also true that there can be lots of bad ones, and he can still be (as he is) the worst.

Just like it's true that he isn't the first corrupt President we've had. But he's definitely displaced Harding at the head of the line.

Well, Hiroshima, Vietnam and Iraq certainly have to be factored into any ranking of presidential badness.

Trump definitely gets the award for best crazy panto villain, though.

Bouie expands on his earlier article:
https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/09/supreme-court-democrats-constitution-judiciary-jamelle-bouie.html

Rather than picking on any of his particular prescriptions, it’s the general approach which appeals to me. Don’t accept the framing that the Court gets to decide everything; both constitution and history disprove that.

Trump definitely gets the award for best crazy panto villain, though.

IT'S BEHIND YOU!

In terms of actual crimes and people killed I don’t think Trump is the worst, but he has potential. He is definitely the worst human being to ever occupy the WH. Utterly unsuited to have power over anything. Even really bad Presidents seemed to have some set of beliefs about something other than themselves. Trump does not.

But the way he is undermining the legitimacy of the election probably takes him to the top of the trash heap. He seems willing to risk turning the election into a coup simply because he is a hollow contemptible piece of shit who can’t be seen as a loser.

Nigel, thanks for the article, and I love Bouie, although I don't agree with him about everything. I'll have to consider for awhile this article, and at first look I'm skeptical. Not that I'm against! Just not there yet.

Donald, I agree about some of what you say. That's often the case.

Trump has a way of bringing people together.

Trump has a way of bringing people together.

So did Victor Frankenstein.

Tru dat!

Trump has a way of bringing people together.

silver linings!!

silver linings!!

Since it's Trump, figure them to turn out to be aluminium or zinc, if you happen to look.

Some characteristically measured hypocrisy from the senator, who will still vote to give Trump another justice before the election to help fix it.

Romney: 'Unthinkable and unacceptable' to not commit to peaceful transition of power
https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/517935-romney-unthinkable-and-unacceptable-to-not-commit-to-peaceful-transition-of

Trump's policy is clear: "Get rid of the ballots"

i really do think this is Trump trolling again.

but even if it is trolling and not the actually planning of a coup, it should be enough to make self-proclaimed patriots give him side-eye. of course they aren't, because their loyalty is to Team GOP™, not to America.

Trump's policy is clear: "Get rid of the ballots"

I think we all need to recognize that November through January are probably going to be a parade of crap shows.

Our system works fine.

Our system has flaws. We're going to see all of them exposed and exploited to a greater degree than any of us have probably seen in our lifetimes.

Trump is a wanna-be dictator. Apparently there is an audience for that, quite a large one, which is a fairly disturbing reality. But he'll be happy to break anything he can find a way to break if it will help him stay in office, and there are lots of folks who will be happy to help him with that.

He's not just a bad POTUS, he's an absurd POTUS. A Bizarro world POTUS. A dystopian sci-fi POTUS.

It's disgraceful. The fact that he holds his office shames the nation.

The fact that he holds his office tells us, on its face, that our system has flaws. It is, apparently, something short of 'fine'.

It's what we have to work with, so we'll work with it. But this is going to be one weird election.

we had a chance to get rid of the EC in 1969, but the Senate thwarted it.

"but the Senate thwarted it."

Of course they did, who would vote to make every vote in their state meaningless? Its bad enough with the EC favoring the large states, but you have a chance to make a difference. 60 or 80 Senators would be conceding that their constituents votes simply don't count.

There have been worse Presidents than Trump, if you include every country in the world since borders were established.

Most of them were butchered and slaughtered.

Of course they did, who would vote to make every vote in their state meaningless?

a two-stage (40% threshold + run-off) system does not make votes meaningless.

Its bad enough with the EC favoring the large states

Favoring because they get more electoral votes than smaller states? What would you propose to remedy this bad-enough situation?

people who live near other people don't count as much as the rugged individualists who certainly don't take in more Federal tax money than they contribute.

i really do think this is Trump trolling again.

Maybe. He's a full-blown narcissist and he's paranoid. So, hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

It seems to be beyond comprehension for many that a person can be simultaneously (1) politically conservative and (2) completely disgusted with Trump.

Further, simply because Trump wants to do something doesn't make that *something* illegal or unconstitutional.

Similarly, there is no inconsistency, or hypocrisy, in Mitt Romney's position: Trump plainly has the constitutional authority to nominate a candidate for RBG's place and the Senate absolutely has the constitutional authority to confirm. Romney is *following* the Constitution. Likewise, Trump does not have the authority to hold over as president unless he is the actual winner. So: legal/constitutional to fill RBG's seat, not legal to ignore an election result.

The more salient question is whether this is bad form and, if so, how bad on the scale of D.C. badness. I have no idea. But whatever filling RBG's seat is or is not, the Constitution is not implicated.

Which doesn't meant that Trump will peacefully leave office if he thinks he won the election, regardless of how irrational that belief might be.

Different answers to different questions.

Most were admitted or created/admitted based on some sense of regional identification.

I don't think this is true. And what if it is?

Why does that matter for making national policy? Lots of things can be decided at the state and local levels. Fine. Do that.

But when it comes to national matters, war and peace, taxes, most environmental issues, there is no case for giving voters in some states disproportionate power.

As a matter of fact, most of what we think of as regional differences have nothing to do with geography or legitimate regional issues at all. They simply are opinions that are widely held in some areas.

The reason AL is conservative is that a lot of the people who live there are conservative, not that liberal policies harm people in warm climates. If they moved to Maine they would still be conservative.

In other words, most so-called regional interests are not interests at all, but just political views, which deserve weight proportional to the number of people who hold them.

It seems to be beyond comprehension for many that a person can be simultaneously (1) politically conservative and (2) completely disgusted with Trump.

It's beyond my comprehension how someone can be simultaneously (1) politically conservative and (2) not completely disgusted with Trump.

Then again, it's beyond my comprehension how someone cannot be completely disgusted with Trump, full stop.

Further, simply because Trump wants to do something doesn't make that *something* illegal or unconstitutional.

This is true. But I don't know who is arguing against this.

Similarly, there is no inconsistency, or hypocrisy, in Mitt Romney's position

Just because something isn't illegal or unconstitutional doesn't mean it isn't inconsistent or hypocritical.

Romney is *following* the Constitution.

The Constitution does not require Romney to publicly support Trump's nominating a SCOTUS justice before the election or to vote to confirm that nominee. So, if he took the opposite position, stating that he didn't think it was in the best interests of the nation for the president to nominate a SCOTUS justice this close to the election, and that he would join Democrats in voting against that nominee, he would still be *following* the Constitution.

I don't think this is true. And what if it is?

Also, too, the most recent state admitted was admitted over 60 years ago, and oldest states a couple centuries ago. I imagine regional identities have changed over the years since any state was admitted, and that they will continue to change. How that bears on the wisdom of the electoral college escapes me.

The Constitution does not *require* Romney to publicly support Trump's nominating a SCOTUS justice before the election or to vote to confirm that nominee.

The Constitution does not *require* a Senator to vote. A Senator has the option of voting yes, no, abstention or absence. The President--any president--has the constitutional right and power to nominate candidates to fill judicial vacancies. A senator who votes or abstains on the President's action is well within the Constitution. The best argument against what Trump is doing is that he shouldn't do it because of past statements by people like Lindsay Graham. It's not a bad argument. But it's not a great argument either since the Dems are just as likely to shift views as a matter of convenience or advantage as are the Republicans.

Looks like DT is all alone in his election outcome views: hehill.com/homenews/senate/517973-mcconnell-pushes-back-on-trump-there-will-be-an-orderly-transition

But it's not a great argument either since the Dems are just as likely to shift views as a matter of convenience or advantage as are the Republicans.

this in-the-future mind-reading is sure doing a lot of work among Republicans these days! those lousy Democrats would be just as lousy as we are being, therefore we're totally justified!

ii suppose it might help assuage the feelings of guilt over having defended the GOP's transparently phony arguments re: MERRICK FUCKING GARLAND.

Imo Mitch is just oppposed to Jabbabonk being so blatant about it. It's a wee bit more difficult to get a Bush v. Gore 2.0 and to get the opposition/the people to swallow it, if one loudly announces in advance that and how one intents to rig the process. An advisor sprung out of jail by pardon-in-anything-but-name openly demanding to seize ballot boxes, to prevent people voting by force of arms and to arrest officials and/or candidates from the opposition party before election does not help the appearance of legitimacy either.

Or in short: Mitch is more of a crook than a thug and prefers 'subtle' measures behind the scenes.

But it's not a great argument either since the Dems are just as likely to shift views as a matter of convenience or advantage as are the Republicans.

Which would be more convincing if you could point to a case (preferably in the last 50-100 years) where they did.

Otherwise an equal case could be made that any candidate is just as likely to turn out like Trump. And I frankly can't see you arguing that.

also, with respect to who has appointed more judges in the judiciary: it's about even right now.

this in-the-future mind-reading is sure doing a lot of work among Republicans these days! those lousy Democrats would be just as lousy as we are being, therefore we're totally justified!

ii suppose it might help assuage the feelings of guilt over having defended the GOP's transparently phony arguments re: MERRICK FUCKING GARLAND.

I'm not going to waste my time arguing with a mind that cannot and will not change. Dems never flip flop. They never say one thing and do another. That's purely a Republican/conservative thing.

Which would be more convincing if you could point to a case (preferably in the last 50-100 years) where they did.

Otherwise an equal case could be made that any candidate is just as likely to turn out like Trump. And I frankly can't see you arguing that.

Are you seriously arguing that no prominent Dem has flipped on an issue in the last 50 years? What about Obama on gay marriage? I always thought he was lying when he said that he thought marriage was between a man and a woman--so, lying to get votes, but that's cool, he was awesome otherwise, so no big deal. There are really good videos around showing HRC saying the polar opposite on the same issues and/or denying saying something that she clearly said. Lying, position-changing, it's fricking universal. Biden's been on every side of every issue there is.

So, spare me the faux outrage. Both sides suck.

I'm not going to waste my time arguing with a mind that cannot and will not change. Dems never flip flop. They never say one thing and do another. That's purely a Republican/conservative thing.

pour one out for poor Mr Straw.

Here's a link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJAvFr6o2zw

Have fun.

who would vote to make every vote in their state meaningless?

If you don't share the political beliefs of most people in your state, the EC renders your vote meaningless. You might as well stay home. Feel free to show up and do your patriotic duty, but your vote will never, ever, ever be counted for or against any candidate.

You might as well not exist.

Because under the EC, the people do not elect the POTUS. The electors do. And, with two exceptions, if more people in your state vote for somebody else, all of your state's electors will vote for whoever won the popular vote, in your state.

Your vote is cancelled.

Conservatives in MA? Liberals in WY? Your vote is a nullity. It's noise. You don't count.

The EC is not about insuring that every person's vote matters. On the contrary. The EC in fact makes millions and millions of votes meaningnless.

The EC is about (a) mitigating the strength of votes in states with large populations and (b) providing a backstop for populism run amok.

That's what it is about.

If those things seem valuable, the EC has value. If they do not, it does not.

Its bad enough with the EC favoring the large states

I have not one freaking idea how to make sense of this statement. Because it is nonsensical.

As you yourself have noted, at length and repeatedly, the point of the EC - it's primary purpose - is specifically to NOT favor large states.

Perhaps you mis-spoke.

It seems to be beyond comprehension for many that a person can be simultaneously (1) politically conservative and (2) completely disgusted with Trump.

???

Further, simply because Trump wants to do something doesn't make that *something* illegal or unconstitutional.

See also comments upthread making exactly this point.

Are you seriously arguing that no prominent Dem has flipped on an issue in the last 50 years?

Apologies. I thought we were talking about a specific instance. And of minds being (supposedly) changed for political convenience, rather than an evolving view in the light of new evidence.

WJ, that's what people always say. Here's another fun link: detroitnews.com/story/opinion/2020/08/13/opinion-barack-obamas-filibuster-hypocrisy/3353317001/

The comments to this entry are closed.

Blog powered by Typepad