The Massachusetts Legislature has approved a new law intended to bypass the Electoral College system and ensure that the winner of the presidential election is determined by the national popular vote.
Since the Electoral College system is one of the checks and balances built into the Constitution (Article 2, Clause 2) by the founders particularly to prevent direct democracy in elections (as opposed to their preference, representative democracy), the nullification of the Electoral College system by the state of Massachusetts one would think would cause a Constitutional crisis. There appears however to be no crisis and no reaction whatever to this significant vote in Massachusetts (and several other states) from the very otherwise heavily engaged White House.
While the White House criticizes (and sues) the state of Arizona for enforcing border controls and immigration law, responsibilities that are the national authorities' but which they fail to fulfill, it is silent about a growing effort in several states to overturn the election process of the United States as specified in the US Constitution. Since when does a state legislature have the authority to nullify the Constitution? I do recall several crises in our history involving nullification, 1832 and 1861 are years that come to mind immediately. A Constitutional Convention is required to amend the Constitution.
Massachusetts Republican candidate for lieutenant governor and State Senate Minority leader Richard Tisei said, "This is sort of an end run around the Constitution."
This attempt to overturn the representative democracy model of presidential elections as specified by the founders in the Constitution is a serious matter. It is clearly unconstitutional and should be overturned in the courts.
The silence of the White House on the Massachusetts nullification suggests that there is no complaint regarding it from that quarter. However, the representative nature of our democracy was built into our national system for a purpose; this purpose must be appreciated and acknowledged as the concepts that underlie it are foundational to our democracy.
The Whiskey Rebellion: One of the first nullification crises in the United States.
Posted on 07/28/2010 10:41 AM by DL Adams