Sirwin
Sirwin

U.S. State Legislatures have the Constitional responsibility to select Electoral College representatives.

By stevea68 | SteveA | 30 Nov 2020


An interesting turn of events began in Pennsylvania when a judge (after she was particularly irked by the the State Governor) asserted that the U.S. Constitution granted power to the State Legislatures (not the Secretary of State, media outlets or even worldwide popular opinion) etc. to determine Electors for the U.S. Presidential election.

Article 2 Section 1.2 of the U.S. Constitution ( from www.constitutionus.com )

"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: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector."

I believe the reasoning behind this section, and other similar determinations of election procedures by the Legislative branch, is that the Legislatures tend to be the most numerous and locally democratically accessible forms of representation for individuals.  Corruption in terms of democratic detachment tends to be more difficult for the Legislature because a large number of legislators, with oftentimes close ties to the populous, would need to be influenced.

As an extreme example, in New Hampshire (from www.nh.gov) "The Legislative Branch is also known as the General Court of New Hampshire. It consists of two chambers, the House of Representatives and the Senate. There are 400 Representatives and 24 Senators, making the General Court the second largest legislature in the United States following the U.S. Congress.".  With a population of about 1.4 million people, that's about 1 Representative per 3,500 people.

The Legislative branch of the U.S. Government is about as "grassroots" and democratic as there is, other than more local city and county based forms.  If there are issues in the U.S. regarding how State election proceedings or conflicts are to be handled, the source, assuming a State Constitution doesn't alter it, would be the U.S. Constitution and the responsibility lies in the hands of State Legislators to resolve.  If they recind that authority then it, of course (as always), falls into the hands of individuals to resolve - so basically we could start all over again asking the questions of should we even have a government, and if so, what are the reasons behind it and how would it best be constructed to address those and to what extent should it be flexible enough to address currently unforeseen issues etc.

It appears much of that power has been transferred, by precedent, to other venues, such as a Secretary of State, Governor or by media outlets etc. of what voting results are etc., but according to the U.S. Constitution that power remains with State Legislators to determine it's specific implementation and assuming no outside considerations are involved, subsequent disputes in courts should agree.

So, if we're to keep democracy around and not leave it up to computerized voting machines and a few media outlets to run the country, now might be a good time to contact a local Representative and encourage them to get involved in this as well.

Here are a couple related videos:

and something else related is this interview with a poll watcher in Pennsylvania. 

 

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stevea68
stevea68

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SteveA
SteveA

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