Wednesday, December 21, 2016

The Electoral College 2016 / What is it anyway? / Is it fair? / Why do we have it? / and Donald Trump (Conclusion)

Well, it is over.  Donald J. Trump is to be the next President of the United States.  The Electors, selected by their respective states, for the most part, voted as their state designated.  But five Democratic Electors bailed on Hillary Clinton; and two Republican Electors failed to vote for Donald Trump as they were sworn to do.

Get this though, the ‘faithless’ Democratic Electors voted as follows:  three voted for Colin Powell (believed to be a Republican – but maybe not), one voted for Bernie Sanders (OK, perhaps understandable), and one voted for Sioux Tribal Leader Faith Spotted Eagle (pictured above).

On the Republican side, one of the ‘faithless’ Electors voted for John Kasich (Yes, Kasich is a Republican and did run for President) and one ‘faithless’ Elector voted for Ron Paul (Ron is a self-avowed Libertarian, but Ron Paul’s son, Rand, did actually run as a Republican Presidential Candidate.  Apparently, said Elector didn’t think Rand was ready for the ‘big show,’ forgot his name, or clutched under pressure).

A couple of thoughts here:

First, I love that term ‘faithless.’  Where’d they come up with that?  It seems to have some religious connotation – not on purpose I imagine.  Kind of archaic – maybe some history there.  And, I suppose the synonym ‘unfaithful’ has another more modern meaning – perhaps overused already.

Were these ‘faithless’ Electors making a political statement, or were they making a joke about what the Electoral College is or has become?  They will indeed have their fifteen minutes of fame; and historians will remember them fondly as ‘screwballs.’  And so goes are political system.

I kind of agree with the Electoral College system and wouldn’t necessarily support its abolishment.  It’s a good thing in a way – giving smaller, less populated states a say in the process.  But, I think the Electors should be subjected to a significant penalty for not voting as they promised to do.  How about 30 days in the County Jail and a $5000 fine?  That way, if an Elector decides to stand on principle, or to just be difficult, he or she might think about their decision more than once – and, perhaps, make that decision while not under the influence of an intoxicant.

True Nelson