Hillary says do away with Electoral College

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ALBANY, N.Y. B Senator-elect Hillary Rodham Clinton called Friday for the elimination of the Electoral College.

Beginning a victory tour of upstate New York, the first lady said she was ready to co-sponsor legislation introduced seven years ago by New York Rep. Michael McNulty for a constitutional amendment that would provide for the direct election of the president.

At the moment, Americans are waiting to see who wins Florida's 25 electoral votes and thus becomes the next president. Vice President Al Gore leads Republican George W. Bush in the popular vote nationwide.

"We are a very different country than we were 200 years ago," Clinton said as McNulty stood at her side. "I believe strongly that in a democracy, we should respect the will of the people, and to me, that means it's time to do away with the Electoral College and move to the popular election of our president."

The first lady also said that because of the closeness of this year's presidential election, "I hope no one is ever in doubt again about whether their vote counts."

As she started her tour across upstate New York, Clinton said she had talked with Republican Gov. George E. Pataki on Thursday about how they could work together to help the state. She called it "a very cordial conversation" and said she and Pataki hope to get together soon.

Pataki was a major supporter of Rep. Rick Lazio, the Republican congressman who Clinton easily beat on Tuesday to win the New York Senate seat.

"I'm back here first and foremost to say thank you," Clinton told a crowd of about 100 people at the Albany International Airport, the first of her six stops across upstate New York.

Clinton ran unusually well in the traditionally more conservative upstate, capturing 47 percent of the vote to Lazio's 50 percent.

-- nope (hillary@what a babe.com), November 10, 2000


Lazio did not "DEMAND" a recount.

I do not know why.

-- (shh@aol.com), November 10, 2000.

1st off I wonder whose money she is squandering by going on her little thank you tour (ego trip)?

If HRC is so fast to chuck the electoral college I would be very suspicious,as she does nothing without ulterior motive.

-- capnfun (capnfun1@excite.com), November 10, 2000.

I shudder to think I agree with Hillary Clinton on anything. Let's pretend..she agrees with me...for once. It's not going to help NOW, but in the future, I think we should let the popular vote elect the president. I understand the Electoral college now..but I do think it's time has come to say good-bye! (M.I.C.K.E.Y.M.O.U.S.E)

Sadly..you can't claim the popular vote is the "will of the people" in this race...because it's the will of only half the people, and by a very small margin. (Yes..I do consider 200k votes to be a very small margin in the popular vote count)

-- kritter (kritter@adelphia.net), November 10, 2000.

Sigh. The Electoral College is irrelevent *except* when the popular vote is extremely close, probably within a 1% difference. By both statistical analysis (which assumes randomness) and by observation (that things are NOT random, since our largest cities are on large bodies of water), the electoral college matters ONLY when the popular vote margin is razor thin. But in that case, it hardly matters who won. The popular vote would probably have favored the other candidate (by a tiny margin) both yesterday and tomorrow, and the regional differences of this tiny margin might cause huge swings in the electoral college in either direction. In practice, the EC is irrelevant.

So OK, we set up rules (EC or no EC, popular vote or something else) ahead of time, and we agree to abide by this system THIS time, and we vote. If we don't like the results, we change them for the NEXT vote. If we change them retroactively to reverse the last election, we are a banana republic and shame on us.

-- Flint (flintc@mindspring.com), November 10, 2000.

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