The United States doesn't hold a popular vote for president. It holds 50 of them. In each of the 50 states, the winner of the popular vote wins all of that state's electoral votes. But some Democrats are trying to change that in Colorado so that a presidential candidate would get only a proportion of the state's electoral votes based on the ratio of popular votes he or she received.
The group, called Make Your Vote Count, has turned in petitions to get the proposed change on the ballot this November. And Gov. Bill Owens immediately declared he would lead the fight to see it defeated. He is right to do so for several reasons.
First, despite the denial of initiative backers, the measure is designed to help John Kerry this fall. If voters approve it, it would take effect immediately, before Colorado's electoral votes are cast in December.
Beyond this year's election, however, the measure would be a disaster for Colorado voters. Rather than making their votes count more, they would count less. If candidates could not be assured of winning all nine Colorado electoral votes upon winning the popular vote here, they would have little incentive to focus on Colorado. States with large numbers of electoral votes California, Texas, New York and Florida would become even more important.
The Daily Sentinel, Grand Junction, Colo., Aug. 4
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