Most Read
Image 01 Image 02 Image 03

I’m so old, I remember when Democrats blamed Hillary’s loss on James Comey, not Russia

I’m so old, I remember when Democrats blamed Hillary’s loss on James Comey, not Russia

Those seeking to flip the Electoral College threaten our social order, which Putin might cherish most.

We live in very dangerous times, with Democrats trying to flip the Electoral College against Trump through cajoling, and when that fails, threats and intimidation.

It still seems unlikely that Democrats will pull it off by Monday, December 19, 2016, when the Electoral College votes. I shudder to think what will happen if Democrats manage to steal the election this way, just as I would have shuddered to think what would have happened in 2008 had Republicans succeeded in stealing the election from Obama using similar tactics.

This Coup de Electoral College attempt is premised mostly on assertions that Russia “hacked the election,” and that there is new information after the election that could not have been considered by voters. In that theory, the Electoral College must act to protect the nation.

That is nonsense. The alleged nefarious connections of Donald Trump and his advisors to Russia were extensively argued during the campaign, as was the claim that those ties led Russia to hack the DNC and John Podesta to help Trump. Democrats even claimed that Trump was involved somehow, and that was in August 2016.

There was an avalanche of bad news about Trump that, just weeks before the election, had Hillary Clinton prematurely arranging an Election Night victory fireworks display. And there was an equal flood, over the course of a year and a half, of negative news about Hillary centering most harmfully around her use of a private server to create a shadow electronic government to shield her records from public view (but not the view of hostile foreign state actors).

And of course, Hillary and her campaign team were their own worst enemies, running a pathetic, inflexible, overly-programmed campaign, while Hillary herself was practically comatose on the campaign trail. Hillary’s collapse at the 9-11 commemoration came to serve as a metaphor for the Clinton campaign, only able to make it to a waiting escape vehicle through the kindness of strangers.

To single out the DNC and Podesta hacks from among the total mix of information confronting voters is just a pretext for attempted larceny. It’s also a rewrite of history.

In the days leading up to and after the election, Democrats and their media supporters were blaming the loss on James Comey’s letter, 11 days before Election Day, notifying Congress that the investigation into Hillary’s email server was being reopened.

I’m so old, I remember Robby Mook, Hillary’s campaign manager, blaming the Comey letter, on December 4, 2016:

Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook on Sunday blamed the Democratic presidential nominee’s loss primarily on the letters from FBI Director James B. Comey regarding her secret email server.

Mr. Mook said the letters — particularly the Oct. 28 letter to Congress saying the FBI was reviewing newly emerged emails — were an “incredibly powerful force” that depressed turnout among undecided voters as well as the women and millennial sectors key to Hillary Clinton’s campaign strategy.

“At the very end of the race, there were probably more undecideds than in a lot of races before. We do think that because the director of the FBI sent two letters in what was an unprecedented intervention in the election, a total breach of protocol — yes, I think a lot of those undecideds broke against us,” Mr. Mook said.

“In fact, I would argue that without those letters, we would have won those, and that’s why we would have won the election,” said Mr. Mook on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

I’m so old, I remember Kevin Drum of progressive flagship Mother Jones listing Three Big Reasons Hillary lost, and the Russians were not one of those reasons, on November 21, 2016. In addition to Millennials and The Working Class divide, Drum blamed (drumroll, please), James Comey:

James Comey. An awful lot of people claim that Democrats are kidding themselves if they blame their loss on Comey instead of their systemic problems. I couldn’t agree less. The Trump campaign thinks Comey made a difference. The Clinton campaign thinks Comey made a difference. The pre-election polls suggest Comey made a difference. The bulk of the evidence suggests it cost Hillary Clinton about 2 percent of the total vote.

I’m so old, I remember the excerable Harry Reid blaming Comey, on November 18, 2016:

Democratic Sen. Harry Reid, who is retiring this year and passing the leadership baton to his colleague Chuck Schumer, knows just who to blame for Hillary Clinton’s ballot box defeat: James Comey.

Reid says Clinton would be the president-elect if the FBI director hadn’t played politics.

‘There is no question in my mind she would have won this election without any problem if Comey had not been the Republican operative that he is,’ Reid said Thursday on MSNBC.

The Senate’s minority leader stated: ‘He is the reason she lost the election.’

I’m so old, I also remember Hillary Clinton blaming Comey, on November 12, 2016:

Hillary Clinton on Saturday cast blame for her surprise election loss on the announcement by the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, days before the election that he had revived the inquiry into her use of a private email server.

In her most extensive remarks since she conceded the race to Donald J. Trump early Wednesday, Mrs. Clinton told donors on a 30-minute conference call that Mr. Comey’s decision to send a letter to Congress about the inquiry 11 days before Election Day had thrust the controversy back into the news and had prevented her from ending the campaign with an optimistic closing argument.

“There are lots of reasons why an election like this is not successful,” Mrs. Clinton said, according to a donor who relayed the remarks. But, she added, “our analysis is that Comey’s letter raising doubts that were groundless, baseless, proven to be, stopped our momentum.”

I’m so old, I even remember when the Clinton Campaign widely circulated a memo to “Senior Staff” blaming Comey — on November 10, 2016:

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/11/12/us/politics/document-Clinton-Senior-Staff-Memo-Why-We-Lost.html

I’m so old, I remember Daily Kos blaming Comey, on November 9, 2016:

It appears that Comey cost us at least FL, MI, and PA (65 Electoral votes) and WI would have been a tossup.

We would be looking at a 307-231 Clinton victory rather than a 306-232 Trump win.

While there may have been other factors in play, this basic analysis supports the hypothesis that James Comey’s decision to politicize the FBI 11 days before the election flipped the final result of the election from Hillary Clinton to Donald Trump.

I’m even so old, I remember how, in the days before the election, Democrats demonized Comey as potentially costing Hillary a win, on November 5, 2016:

By contrast, Democrats rallying behind Mrs. Clinton have made a late-campaign strategy out of fueling outrage at the F.B.I. The campaign published an open letter, signed by dozens of former prosecutors, chastising Mr. Comey. President Obama criticized him. The House minority leader, Nancy Pelosi, hinted that he might be pushed from office.

“Maybe he’s not in the right job,” Ms. Pelosi told CNN. “I think that we have to just get through this election and just see what the casualties are along the way.”

Now, it’s the Russians, the Russians, the Russians.

It may be that the Russians were responsible for the DNC and Podesta hacks, and did it to help Trump. But it is a huge logical leap to then say that was the decisive factor in the election; that’s not what Hillary, her campaign, Harry Reid and leading progressives were claiming just before and after the election.

Moreover, given all the factors and flow of information, it would be a completely speculative and logical leap to say that Russian interference was so huge that it warrants reversing the election result. It also is a leap to go from the need to investigate, retaliate, and prevent future intrusions, to reversing an election.

Those seeking to flip the Electoral College are playing with fire. There is a slender reed that holds this nation together, and allows for the peaceful transition of power. The clearly pretextual argument being made to reverse the outcome could tear our social order apart.

Which, of course, would be the ultimate victory for Vladimir Putin, and perhaps one he would cherish the most.

DONATE

Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.

Comments

Someone has posted video from hilldawg’s “lost it” gala.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFvujknrBuE

Not to mention the Electoral College provides a unique blend of federalism upon which the system thrives.

It’s not like California is lacking electoral weight compared to other states.

Is there any Constitutional basis for the Electoral College to consider post-Election suspicions like this? None of the College members hold sufficient security clearances to even hear the information, let alone act on it. Besides, the CIA says they won’t brief anybody, including Congress.

    Milhouse in reply to SeniorD. | December 17, 2016 at 8:29 pm

    The constitutional basis is simply that the electors can consider whatever they like. They are under no obligation, legal or moral, to vote as expected, and any state law purporting to impose such an obligation is self-evidently invalid. The reason electors so seldom do change their votes is not because they shouldn’t, let alone because they can’t, but merely because they seldom want to. Candidates for elector are nominated by their respective parties for their proven partisan commitment and loyalty, so it’s hardly surprising that they almost always stick with their party. That’s why it’s utterly inconceivable that R electors, no matter what they think of Trump, would vote for Clinton, or for any other Democrat. The most that any of them might do is vote for some other Republican.

If the Russians are so competent at throwing American elections, how did Obama come about?

Twice.

Shutter –> Shudder

Prof Jacobson, your talk of a coup is nonsense. The electors are not going to elect Clinton, but if they were to do so she would be the lawfully elected president, and any objection would be no more valid than the objections to Trump, or to W Bush in 2000.

We are a constitutional republic, and whether you like it or not the constitution says we do not have the right to elect the president. We must vote for electors, and leave the president’s election to them. If you think that’s illegitimate, then you have no other option but to join Clinton’s supporters in demanding that she prevail for having got the most votes. Trump’s only claim on the presidency is that he won according to the current rules, and the current rules say the electors decide. The only control we voters can have on the electors is to choose electors we think are extremely likely to vote our way when the time comes; more than 99% of the time our prediction comes true.

Candidates for presidential elector declare when they are nominated for that office how they intend to vote if elected, and no doubt they all mean it sincerely, but like anyone they can change their minds, for good reasons or bad, and we have no cause for complaint if they do. If you don’t like it propose a constitutional amendment to get rid of the actual electors, and just allocate votes to each state, to be apportioned on election day by applying rules the state legislature has set in advance. I’d support such an amendment, but until it’s passed you must acknowledge the legitimacy of the current system, including the prospect of electors changing their minds.

    tom swift in reply to Milhouse. | December 17, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    including the prospect of electors changing their minds.

    That depends on why they change their minds.

    If forty of them were bribed—to the tune of, say, a million dollars each—that would be a cheap price for Dem victory, but it would hardly count as a legal electoral tactic.

    And if you don’t mind the influence of big money, consider another scenario; electors’ relatives could be kidnapped, with threats that they’d be found dismembered near some railroad tracks if the electors didn’t see the light.

    There’s no way to claim that absolutely any vote by the electors would automatically constitute a legal election.

      Milhouse in reply to tom swift. | December 17, 2016 at 10:53 pm

      Absolutely any vote by the electors would automatically constitute a legal election. Even if they are bribed or threatened, their votes are valid, just as any vote by a congressman, even if he was bribed or threatened, is valid, and so is any vote by a voter, even if he was bribed or threatened. Of course offering or accepting a bribe, or making a threat, is a crime. Congressmen who take bribes are expelled and imprisoned, but the votes they cast corruptly are not reversed; the same would be true of electors.

    Well, no, Milhouse, that’s not correct. Electors in all but a handful of states are bound to the popular vote outcome of their state. Electoral votes are winner-take-all, and via state laws or party pledges they avow when accepting elector status require them to vote as their state did. Period. They can’t just up and vote for Ted Cruz (alas). This is why we were so eagerly staring at our televisions on election night: it didn’t matter by how much Trump won the states he won, it only mattered that he won them.

    This is also why Democrats have so frequently won the popular vote and lost the White House. The popular vote they win is huge in states like California and New York, where leftists gather like locusts in the millions, but in the vast majority of states, American voters don’t think or vote as they do on the coasts.

    Technically, in some states, electors can vote against the popular vote, and some have done so over the years, but it has never changed the results of an election, nor should it now. Nor will it now.

    Even if electors want to go rogue and do so, GOP electors cannot vote for Hillary, so the matter goes to the House. The House will formally elect President-elect Trump. We’ll know for sure on Monday, but I would be absolutely gob-smacked if President-elect Trump doesn’t get the required EC votes.

      Well, yes, Fuzzy Slippers, that is correct. State laws purporting to bind electors are blatantly unconstitutional, exactly as similar laws purporting to bind congressmen would be, or as laws purporting to bind you and me when we vote would be. The constitution gives the electors the duty to vote, and a compelled vote is not a vote at all. So yes, the electors could vote for Ted Cruz if they liked. Or for Charles Manson.

      I really wonder what you think you mean by “when accepting elector status”. Nobody “accepts” elector status; presidential electors are elected, just like any other officeholder.

      None of the 538 electors pledged to support whomever their state chose. Of all the many thousands of candidates for presidential elector, 538 pledged that if they won they would vote for the Republican ticket, and 538 more pledged that if they won they would vote the presidential ticket. 306 of the Republican candidates were successful, as were 232 of the Democratic candidates. Therefore it’s to be expected that on Monday Trump and Pence will be elected, but any elector has the right to change his mind.

      I agree that electors changing their mind won’t change the result this time, but it could.

      Nor do I understand what you mean by claiming that “GOP electors cannot vote for Hillary”. They won’t, of course, but they can. They have every legal right to do so, but also the good sense and political commitment not to. If they were the kind of person who would consider voting for Clinton they would never have been nominated for their positions.

        “In the manner of their choosing’- the electors are the state’s creatures, not animals of their own. You seem to think that they carefully crafted a federal system with the intent that in its most critical aspect that it NOT be that was.

          Milhouse in reply to rdm. | December 18, 2016 at 11:10 am

          The electors are not the state’s creatures. They are federal officials, who are chosen as the state legislature directs. Once chosen they’re on their own, just as the senators that state legislatures used to elect were on their own once elected.

          If you give a dmn about the framers’ actual intention, they intended electors to be chosen with no presidential candidate in mind. The electors would then discuss among themselves who might be a good fit for the office of president and decide how to vote. They had no idea or intention that within eight years electors would be chosen not for their wisdom but because they were expected to vote for a specific person.

        DaveGinOly in reply to Milhouse. | December 18, 2016 at 10:33 pm

        Milhouse, the Constitution is completely silent on the nature of electors, it merely says that “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors…,” and that they shall “vote” for president and vice-president. (The directive of the Constitution to “appoint” electors “in such manner” of the States’ choosing may indicate that electors are creatures of their respective States, having been appointed by them. The Constitution merely directs the States to create these “creatures,” it does not assert federal authority over them.) It doesn’t say from where they shall receive their direction, nor does it prohibit the States from directing them. Being silent on where the electors shall get their instructions, the Tenth Amendment would seem to reserve the authority to the States to direct their electors (who are representing their respective States in the election process) as they see fit. The Constitution certainly does not give Congress or any other federal office the authority to either direct the electors themselves, nor to prevent the States from directing their respective electors according to their own laws.

Humphrey's Executor | December 17, 2016 at 8:43 pm

So the Dems can sit on the Trump vulgar open mic vid for months and spring it in October to influence the election. Perfectly OK. But if the Russians release purloined unflattering Dem e-mails that is some great scandal. Methinks the lady dost protest too much.

Hillary didn’t cheat enough to win and that’s why she lost. That and the fact that she racked up all sorts of unethical things, had a private server, was above the law and loved being corrupt. Then there are all her health issues. The dems should have let Bernie run instead.

I was a Cruz supporter – I was really an “iffy” on this election. What changed was the trickle of the negatives. The leaks re the DNC emails,the activity against Sanders,the health issues, the lies and all that stuff. And, Trump was beginning to get stronger.

So, I was one of those that held my nose and voted for Trump. I am happy that I did – his picks for his cabinet are great and I can only hope for more positive activity for our country.

As for the negative – I knew that he had a big business and I also understand that it takes a while to get away from it. Every one knows this so what is the problem? We are supposed to be afraid of what Trump might do vs what Hillary did with her Clinton Foundation? She already violated the trust.

This is what our founding fathers wanted – people who lived in America, served for a bit and then returned to their life.

I live in Oklahoma and I remember that we had one person that had a problem with Congress. Dr. Coburn made a commitment to term limit himself and he wanted to be able to continue seeing patients so that he could offset the cost of the malpractice insurance during this time as well as maintain his medical license. The Senate leaders gave him a hard time.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A28320-2005Apr5.html

However, I think it is interesting to see that the DNC Chair Debbie W-S was able to be a representative as well as the DNC chair – wasn’t that outside employment. I can’t imagine that Debbie did all that work without compensation.

WA-Conservatarian | December 17, 2016 at 11:44 pm

Millhouse, making the same ridiculous statement in two different threads doesn’t make it correct. You asserted that same “brazenly unconstitutional” argument in the Lawrence Lessig thread. You were wrong then; you’re wrong now. From my response:

*****
Your assertion that electors are analogous to Senators is ludicrous, at least for electors in Washington State. The slate of electors put forward by each presidential ticket is PLEDGED to vote for that ticket should they become part of the Electoral College. Electors are subject to civil penalty if they fail to cast their vote in accordance with the result of Washington’s winner-take-all presidential election. To my knowledge, no legislator is bound by pledge or subject to penalty with regard to their vote.

Here’s an excerpt from the website of the National Archives and Records Administration – the agency actually responsible for the administration of the Electoral College:

*****
The U.S. Supreme Court has held that the Constitution does not require that Electors be completely free to act as they choose and therefore, political parties may extract pledges from electors to vote for the parties’ nominees. Some state laws provide that so-called “faithless Electors” may be subject to fines or may be disqualified for casting an invalid vote and be replaced by a substitute elector. The Supreme Court has not specifically ruled on the question of whether pledges and penalties for failure to vote as pledged may be enforced under the Constitution. No Elector has ever been prosecuted for failing to vote as pledged.
***** https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/electors.html

In your thread-spawning post, you stated the following: “Laws requiring electors to vote as they had pledged before the election are brazenly unconstitutional….”

Ummmm… No. Even as specious opinion… No. You are not entitled to your own facts.
*****

    Your assertion that electors are analogous to Senators is ludicrous

    On the contrary, they are exactly the same.

    The slate of electors put forward by each presidential ticket is PLEDGED to vote for that ticket should they become part of the Electoral College.

    Senate candidates regularly pledge to support or oppose certain bills, and generally to support their party line, and yet they are free not to.

    Electors are subject to civil penalty if they fail to cast their vote in accordance with the result of Washington’s winner-take-all presidential election. To my knowledge, no legislator is bound by pledge or subject to penalty with regard to their vote.

    The state law purporting to impose such a penalty is blatantly unconstitutional, exactly as it would be if the state undertook to bind legislators.

    The U.S. Supreme Court has held that the Constitution does not require that Electors be completely free to act as they choose

    No it hasn’t. If you think it has, I dare you to cite and link to the case.

    , political parties may extract pledges from electors to vote for the parties’ nominees.

    Yes, the Supreme Court certainly did say that parties may extract such pledges from candidates in party primaries. They may do so not just for candidates for presidential elector but for anyone seeking their nomination. Parties may extract loyalty pledges from candidates for senate, congress, governor, president, or dog catcher, as a condition of being allowed to run in the primary. But these pledges are not and cannot be binding.

    The Supreme Court has not specifically ruled on the question of whether pledges and penalties for failure to vote as pledged may be enforced under the Constitution.

    No, it hasn’t ruled on that, because nobody has ever brought such a case before it, but dicta in the case referred to above indicate that it would strike such laws down.

      DaveGinOly in reply to Milhouse. | December 18, 2016 at 10:59 pm

      As I mentioned above, the Constitution is silent on subject of the derivation of authority to direct electors. The Constitution not indicate that any federal office or official directs electors (“powers not delegated”), nor does it prohibit the States from directing their electors (“not prohibited to the States”). Therefore, according to the Tenth Amendment, the “powers” of the States to direct electors in the manner in which they shall represent their respective States “are reserved to the States, or to the People.”

Fuzzy: “Well, no, Milhouse, that’s not correct.”

Thanks for correcting that nonsense so I didn’t have to.

One question. Something I don’t understand that perhaps you can clear up for me – why do we have humans “presenting” the Electoral Votes? In the era before the Pony Express, I can understand why the Founders thought it wise to send someone in person to faithfully report the results from his state, but why still have it?

Especially considering recent history of Democrats trying to corrupt this process (they tried the same thing in 2000).

    Milhouse in reply to Fen. | December 18, 2016 at 1:05 am

    why do we have humans “presenting” the Electoral Votes? In the era before the Pony Express, I can understand why the Founders thought it wise to send someone in person to faithfully report the results from his state

    Excuse me? That does not happen. Nobody is sent in person to Washington to report how the state’s electors voted. The electors send their report in by mail or courier or I suppose now by email. They send six copies: one to the vice president, two to the national archivist, two to their state’s secretary of state, and one to the district judge of the state capital. If the vice president’s copy is lost in the mail, he requests the national archivist and/or the state’s secretary of state to send one of their two copies.

    I guess that your real question is why we bother having the electors meet and vote, rather than just deem them as having voted the way they “should”. The answer is that if they don’t vote there’s no president or vice president. They are the ones who elect the president and vp; until they vote this Monday Trump is not really the president-elect, he’s just a candidate who is assured of winning.

    I actually agree that we should get rid of the electoral college and replace it with a “virtual EC” in which each state is allocated votes rather than electors, and those votes are calculated automatically based on the general election results in that state. But this would require a constitutional amendment, so lotsa luck.

    I haven’t looked into this, Fen, but my guess is that it’s the same reason some states still have incredibly silly laws (one state, I think Alaska, actually has a law that makes illegal whispering in someone’s ear while they are moose hunting). No one’s bothered to review old law and everyone is just piling up new law so their constituents think they’re earning their keep.

    This is why on any given day, each and every one of us breaks an untold number of local, state, and federal laws . . . without knowing about it (and I’m not talking murder, robbery, or anything like that, I’m talking singing in a swimsuit in public, having “perverse” sex–any that is not missionary style, spitting out fruit seeds or pits in public, and on and on).

Two Federal courts and now a State Supreme Court have ruled electors are required to vote as their bound party ran. Because if they did not they would be ignoring their STATE’s concerns in favor of a political party’s want. 3 challenges by Democrats. All denied in three days. Three attempts, again, by Democrats to destroy the republic for their pretentious pandering, and rather destructive oligarchies. Crony Capitalism.

    Milhouse in reply to puhiawa. | December 18, 2016 at 1:07 am

    As far as I know neither of the judges who said so cited any precedent or made any serious argument for this position. And state supreme courts are irrelevant, because electors are exercising a federal function and are not subject to the state judiciary.

      DaveGinOly in reply to Milhouse. | December 18, 2016 at 11:03 pm

      1. Maybe there is no precedent to cite?
      2. If you walk into a court with a bogus legal argument, even if your opponent has a bogus counter-argument, you can still lose your case because you’re wrong. The onus to convince the court of the legal validity of a claim rests entirely with the claimant. The judge need not tell the claimant why he is wrong. (Indeed, the claimant may have a legitimate bone to pick, but if he makes the wrong argument in support of said bone, he will still be thrown out of court on his ear. The court cannot take action on its own – it must be moved by the claimant’s argument. If the argument is unconvincing, the court will not move – or at least it shouldn’t.)

The Constitution: “Each state shall appoint in such manor as the legislature thereof may direct.” Art. II sec. 1. While the Constitution does not address how the electors must vote, the control or lack thereof of the electors is clearly delegated to the state’s legislatures and I would anticipate SCOTUS would give great deference to the state legislatures’ statutes governing their electors. SCOTUS and the federal courts would and should be loath to encroach on the states’ prerogative to run their elections, including how they manage their Electoral College electors. That’s also why they meet in their respective states, not in D.C. While your opinion may suggest otherwise, your opinion is not fact and, if challenged, would probably not be upheld by SCOTUS.

    Milhouse in reply to lawdoc. | December 18, 2016 at 11:24 am

    the control or lack thereof of the electors is clearly delegated to the state’s legislatures

    No, it is not. The only thing delegated to the state’s legislatures is to choose the method by which the electors are to be appointed. Once they have been appointed, by whichever method the legislature has chosen, the legislature has no right to control them.

    SCOTUS and the federal courts would and should be loath to encroach on the states’ prerogative to run their elections, including how they manage their Electoral College electors.

    The states have no prerogative whatsoever. It’s specifically the state legislatures that have the prerogative, and it extends only to one thing: choosing the method by which electors are to be appointed; nothing else. They have no prerogative to “manage” the electors.

    Even senators, who until the 17th amendment were directly elected by the state legislatures, were not subject to those legislatures’ “management” once elected. They could not be recalled, or told how to vote. (Various state legislatures did occasionally try to “instruct” their senators how to vote, but these instructions had no more force of law than a petition from constituents has now. If you get 20,000 constituents warning their congressman that if he doesn’t vote as they like they won’t reelect him, he will probably pay attention, but he doesn’t have to.)

    The Supreme Court has already visited the issue in 1952, when they ruled that a political party can require a pledge as a condition of participating in a party primary for the office of presidential elector, or for any other office. They did not say that the state could impose such a requirement, and they certainly did not say that the electors could be bound by such a pledge. Again, parties can require such a pledge from candidates for congress too, but nobody imagines that it would be binding. A candidate can seek the nomination promising to vote against Obamacare, for instance, and then change his mind.

      DaveGinOly in reply to Milhouse. | December 18, 2016 at 11:13 pm

      Would you please cite the section of the Constitution in which you find that any federal authority is empowered to control how electors vote, or to prohibit the States from determining this for themselves?

      *Crickets*

      I thought so. Please review the Tenth Amendment.

        DaveGinOly in reply to DaveGinOly. | December 18, 2016 at 11:19 pm

        It just occurred to me to ask for another citation from you – If electors are federal creatures and subject to the direction of federal authority (Congress, may I presume?), can you cite the law that controls electors’ behavior?

        I don’t believe such a law exists. It’s non-existence would be evidence that no such authority resides with the federal government. If it did, you’d think that after more than two hundred years it would have been asserted by statute, and that the behavior of electors would have either been made regular or their complete freedom to vote as they choose would have been made clear (by Congress). Also, the federal government would have long since asserted its authority over the States that presumed such authority themselves. This has not happened either.

The Democratic illuminati—and Milhouse—are not asking for a vote; they are asking for a conspiracy.

The Electors are supposed to vote for one of the candidates. The candidates are not limited to two, but they are predetermined and well defined. There’s an electoral slate on the ballot, not a vague population of wannabes.

There is nothing in the Constitution nor in the USA’s other founding documents which authorizes the Electors to vote for anyone who is not on the ballot. Nor are they intended or authorized to hold a mini-convention to select other candidates, nor to conspire in small groups to do so. That skullduggery is specifically left to the House of Representatives, in the event that the Electors bungle what should be a very straightforward job.

The reason why the Constitution doesn’t give the Electors broader powers is obvious enough. If Electors can elect anybody, there’s nothing to prevent them from electing … one of the Electors. If Rome could fall into that trap, so could the USA. But it’s easily avoided; all the Electors have to do is follow the instructions, and not some new deviltry.

    Milhouse in reply to tom swift. | December 18, 2016 at 11:40 am

    The Electors are supposed to vote for one of the candidates. The candidates are not limited to two, but they are predetermined and well defined.

    Where are you getting this nonsense? When has this ever been the case?

    There’s an electoral slate on the ballot

    What ballot? There is no ballot for president. The electoral slates were dealt with in November, and these electors were on one of them. That election is done, and now we have 538 electors, all of whom are expected to vote with no prepared ballot.

    There is nothing in the Constitution nor in the USA’s other founding documents which authorizes the Electors to vote for anyone who is not on the ballot.

    Again, what ballot? In 1787 there was no such thing as a prepared ballot with the names of predetermined candidates printed on it. That is called the Australian ballot, because it was invented in that country, which wasn’t even settled by Europeans until 1788, and did not have elections until many years later.

    Nor are they intended or authorized to hold a mini-convention to select other candidates, nor to conspire in small groups to do so. That skullduggery is specifically left to the House of Representatives, in the event that the Electors bungle what should be a very straightforward job.

    You have it exactly backwards. The electors were absolutely expected to come up with their own candidates. They were expected to be chosen on the basis of their wisdom, with no particular presidential candidate in mind, and to discuss it among themselves and decide on a suitable president. The founders did not anticipate that by 1796 they would be chosen on the basis of whom they were expected to support. But if the election goes to the House, it is constrained to a limited field of three. The founders expected that this would happen much more often than it has; their vision was that the electors would come up with many names, and the House would choose among the three most popular.

    If Electors can elect anybody, there’s nothing to prevent them from electing … one of the Electors

    Indeed they can. There is absolutely nothing preventing it. There’s no reason the NY Republican and Democratic Party could not have put Trump and Clinton on their respective slates of candidates for elector this year. Both are eligible to serve as electors, and the fact that they wanted to be elected is no reason to prevent it, any more than it prevented them from voting for themselves (or rather for their party’s slate of electoral candidates) in November.

    DaveGinOly in reply to tom swift. | December 18, 2016 at 11:31 pm

    Here I must partially agree with Milhouse. The Constitution does not say how the electors must behave, nor does it say for whom they may or may not vote, neither has Congress asserted such authority. If the Constitution did declare such things, or authorize Congress to make such laws, in the former instance it would be self-evident (and it is not), in the latter case statutes accomplishing same would exist (they do not). Once again, I must point out we are dealing with power not delegated to Congress, nor prohibited to the States.

Is there a particular reason why it has to be one or the other, but not both? Can election not be swayed by two separate factors?

FWIW, I see Comey as the one that caused a far more significant damage to Clinton campaign, but that doesn’t mean that Russians didn’t play any role. I do agree that “… it is a huge logical leap to then say that was the decisive factor in the election”, but it doesn’t have to be deciding factor to be a factor.

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | December 18, 2016 at 10:46 am

I don’t think it has ever been about stealing the election. People who have been activists in the state Republican Party are not going to vote for HRC. If 37+ Republican electors decide to abstain or vote for someone other than Trump, then the election will go to the House. The problem with that is that Trump got more votes than any other Republican presidential candidate in history. The idea that House Republicans would defy the Republican electorate and vote for anybody other than Trump to be president is delusional.

I think since November 9 EVERYTHING has been about delegitimizing Trump. That’s what the “Not My President” riots were about; that’s why they invented this “fake news” meme; why they blamed Comey; why they keep promoting the fact that HRC won the popular vote; why they are screaming about the electoral college; and why they are blaming Putin. Throw it all at the wall. Donors gave HRC $1.2 billion and got beat by the host of Celebrity Apprentice who never won an election before. They want something for their money.

The de-legitimization campaign is Phase I. They want it to be top of mind that Trump barely won and that he won by shady means. After Phase I begins Phase II. Phase II is to keep his unfavorables high. That’s because if they can portray him as illegitimate and unliked it becomes harder for Congress support him without putting their own re-elections at risk.

We are already seeing hints about how Phase II will be carried out. The Democrat Media Complex will pound him on “conflict of interest”. I think that will be the equivalent of his secret server email scandal. It will never go away because his holdings are vast. It will be front page for four years to keep his favorability down.

Trump and Congress better work with lightning speed to get their highest priorities done as quickly as they can. The Democrat Media Complex began trying to dilute his “political capital” on November 9. After the first 100 days the negative reporting is likely to take it’s toll.

This is quite entertaining.
The Democrat’s are still searching the world over for a Donkey to pin this tail on.
First, Comey. Then the voting machines, and Russia…
Now, I guess it is just Russia and Putin in Particular.
Oh, Assange was in the pile there too somewhere.
I can hardly wait for the next edition of ” Where’s the Donkey “, sure to come out tomorrow night…

Obama was the president during all of this hacking. Oh wait, he’s playing golf now and not to be bothered.

Contrary to Milhouse, the U.S. Constitution leaves it up to the state legislatures to determine how electors are selected.

Since all the state legislatures have determined that they shall be selected by popular vote, it would hardly be surprising if a number of state legislatures respond to this attempt at an electoral college coup by creating serious penalties for faithless electors and overall improve the selection process to better protect the interests of voters.

In any case, it remains deeply and dangerously dishonorable to suggest that the electors somehow must be regarded as philosopher-kings with the authority to over-rule the People’s vote. Yes, the state legislatures could impose that on us but, dependent as legislators are on voters, they have all created long-standing precedent that electors are to express the will of the people as expressed through the popular vote within each state.

Font Resize
Contrast Mode
Send this to a friend