It seems that the idea of altering the Electoral College becomes a topic of much debate during each presidential election. The Jan. 29 editorial, entitled, “Not in Ohio,” explains Speaker Bill Batchelder’s view that Ohio should not move away from the current “winner take all” system to one that allocates the state’s electoral votes based on popular vote outcomes in congressional districts.
The editorial concludes with an appeal to move toward a system that recognizes the national popular vote winner. While I agree with Batchelder’s conclusion, his logic is flawed. The editorial’s appeal is misguided.
Batchelder claims that moving toward the congressional district model is contrary to what “the authors of our founding documents had ever intended.”
This is not the case. The Founding Fathers provided each state legislature the right to allocate its electoral votes however it chose to do so.
This is designed as one of the many checks and balances. Each state, particularly the less populous ones, retains some influence in the selection of our president.
The Founding Fathers fully expected each state to act in its best interest, whether it is a “winner take all” method, a congressional district method or a national popular vote method. Ohio uses the “winner take all” system, as do most other states.
The reason Ohio has been a so-called “battleground” state has to do with the fact that Ohio is a microcosm of the entire nation.
If Ohio were to adopt the congressional district model, our influence on the presidential election would be severely affected, and there would be economic impacts, as well.
The concept of a national popular vote is not viable. First, to apply such a model throughout the land, the Constitution would need to be amended, an extremely high hurdle.
Second, a national popular vote would yield utter chaos any time the election is very close. Recall the situation in Florida during the 2000 Bush/Gore election.
Now try to envision a situation where the overall national popular vote is very close. Every county board of elections across the nation, even those where one candidate received the vast majority of votes within that county, could be challenged to initiate a recount.
State elections officials, who are partisan by nature, or judges, would wield undue influence.
Protecting the constitutional checks and balances, maintaining Ohio’s influence as a “swing” state and avoiding the inevitable problems that would ensue under a national popular vote system are all reasons enough to retain the current “winner take all” system in Ohio.
Let’s give the Founding Fathers their due. The Electoral College is rather convoluted and not very intuitive, but it is ingenious.
Fair question for McCain
Aren’t we all guilty of acting on or verbalizing our feelings and judgments, which, on reflection, are indiscreet, or worse, in light of unfolding events?
Sen. John McCain was bearing down awfully hard on former Sen. Chuck Hagel in the first Senate hearing to confirm Hagel as secretary of defense. McCain and other interrogators seemed intent on forcing Hagel to defend his past indiscretions, many of which are in conflict with Republican thinking.
I think it would have been fair play on the part of Hagel to counter with a question to McCain: “Senator, would you like the opportunity to rethink your decision in 2008 to take Sarah Palin as your running mate?”
Defense against the government
President Obama is now trying to convince the public that the Second Amendment is about hunting and target shooting by proclaiming that he shoots skeet all the time at Camp David.
Let me clue in all who dropped out of government class in high school. The Second Amendment has absolutely nothing to do with the right to go hunting or target shooting.
The Second Amendment verifies that every citizen has the right to defend himself or herself from an oppressive government, even his or her own government.
For all of you who have written that, during the Founding Fathers’ day, the musket was the weapon they were referring to, you are right.
The musket was the weapon that the American and British armies carried in that day, so the founders deemed that it was appropriate for every citizen to also have that same weapon.
If you want to limit me to that weapon, then limit the armed forces of today to the same weapon, and see how many volunteers for the armed forces you get under that stupid restriction. Whatever arms our armed forces carry, I have the same right to own; not to hunt, not to target shoot, but to defend myself from my own government, if need be.
Our government won’t attack its own citizens? Go get the facts about Ruby Ridge and Waco. Both were attacks by an overzealous government against its own citizens.
Get the facts as to why the IRS and Homeland Security have bought hundreds of thousands of rounds of ammunition for target practice. Yeah, right.
Now tell me that I mean every citizen should be allowed to own a tank or a jet fighter. Well, yes they should, if they could afford it, which eliminates 99.99 percent of us.
So save that argument for the other people who slept through, failed or were never taught in a government class.
If you want to stop the types of shootings we have had at Sandy Hook and at the movie theater in Denver, I agree with you.
Start enforcing the thousands of gun laws already on the books. Prosecute those dealers who sell guns illegally, prosecute those who attempt to buy guns who aren’t qualified to own one and prosecute those who use a gun in the commission of a crime and start letting law-abiding citizens use their Second Amendment rights to protect themselves and others in every public place.
Remember this: When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.
Spending cuts without pain
I read the Feb. 3 column by Robert J. Samuelson (“What is the ‘sequester’? Here’s what you should know”).
“To be effective, a sequester has to hit millions of Americans so hard that, if it took effect, mobs of outraged voters would storm Capitol Hill,” Samuelson wrote.
This column answered my top financial question: Why must the tax-paying citizens of this country suffer?
While we are being told that cuts must be made, never once is the phrase “foreign aid” passing anyone’s lips. For me, this exception is surely a sacred cow, not Social Security.
Earlier this week, all Americans had their noses rubbed in the ongoing imbalance when it was made known that the U.S. built a $7.3 million jail, which sits empty, in Afghanistan.
We have poured money into the country since the late 1970s. We worked to rebuild the infrastructure of Iraq. We have “bled” Americans’ dollars all over the world to gain allies and unequal peace agreements.
Personally, I think Americans are suffering enough. Why is it that the people, who voted in the Congress, are always the ones to suffer?
Our veterans must fight for medical help and our seniors must choose medical care over food and heat.
Why isn’t foreign aid curtailed? It certainly hasn’t done us much good, considering peace is always what it’s supposedly buying!
Roe v. Wade and women’s health
As we observe a major milestone for Roe v. Wade, celebrating 40 years of achievement, I want to share important information on why Roe v. Wade should never be overturned.
A woman’s decision regarding her reproductive future must be left to the woman, her family, her faith and the counsel of her doctor.
Unfortunately, some politicians still insist on interfering with personal choices, and they just haven’t figured out that we, as women and Americans, don’t like it.
In fact, a majority of Americans supports and respects the decision each woman makes about her own pregnancy and opposes efforts to overturn Roe v. Wade.
According to a 2012 Quinnipiac poll, 64 percent of American voters agree with the Roe v. Wade ruling, up from 60 percent in 2010.
An important role in ensuring and providing for women’s health care is provided by Planned Parenthood. For almost a century, Planned Parenthood health centers have been providing professional, nonjudgmental and confidential health care, including giving information to keep women healthy and to prevent unintended pregnancies.
These health centers help women prevent an estimated 486,000 unintended pregnancies and an estimated 204,000 abortions each year.
From courthouses to statehouses to Capitol Hill, Planned Parenthood works to protect access to health care for women. Planned Parenthood takes action to ensure that women have access to care, no matter what.