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Short Explanation
The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee a majority of the Electoral College to the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The bill would reform the Electoral College so that the electoral vote in the Electoral College reflects the choice of the nation's voters for President of the United States.   more
11 Enactments
The National Popular Vote bill has been enacted into law in states possessing 165 electoral votes — 61% of the 270 electoral votes needed to activate the legislation.

  • Maryland - 10 votes
  • Massachusetts - 11
  • Washington - 12 votes
  • Vermont - 3 votes
  • Rhode Island - 4 votes
  • DC - 3 votes
  • Hawaii - 4 votes
  • New Jersey - 14 votes
  • Illinois - 20 votes
  • New York - 29 votes
  • California - 55 votes

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    Birch Bayh (D–IN)
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    The candidate who gets the most votes in all 50 states.
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    AB 459 (HILL) — NATIONAL POPULAR VOTE

    ASSEMBLY FLOOR STATEMENT

    MONDAY 5-16-11 — 12:00 PM — ASSEMBLY FLOOR

    FILE ITEM 124

    Speaker and Members:

    • I'm going to do something a little unusual today; I'm going to open with my closing statement and summarize the debate you're about to hear on the national popular vote bill.
    • Today you will hear a number of things that simply are not true.
    • You will hear this bill is unconstitutional.
    • The national popular vote proposal was unveiled in 2006.
    • In the 5 years that it has been debated and discussed in all 50 states there is not a single constitutional scholar of note or national reputation who has written or opined that this bill is unconstitutional.
    • You will hear that the national popular vote bill is an end-run around the Constitution.
    • Members, every electoral change of consequence in this country's history started at the state level with state legislative action.
    • The right to vote for President is not in the Constitution.
    • The right to vote for President came about because every state legislature in this country passed a state law.
    • The manner in which we all received the right to vote for President was not an end-run around the Constitution. National Popular Vote simply follows the historical precedent of state action.
    • You will be told that this bill abolishes the Electoral College.
    • AB 459 is not a long bill. The substance of the bill is 888 words. There is not a single clause in this bill that abolishes, eliminates, or circumvents the Electoral College.
    • You will hear this bill is an affront to the Founding Fathers who carefully designed a balanced system for electing the President.
    • Members — the current system used to elect the President is the so-called "winner-take-all" system. The candidate receiving the most votes in California is awarded California's electoral votes.
    • The winner-take-all system was not one that was embraced by the Founding Fathers. Only three states used it in the first presidential election.
    • The system we use now is a product of the 19th and 20th century, not the one envisioned by Madison, Jefferson, Hamilton, and Adams.
    • You will be told that a national popular vote will eviscerate states' rights and undermine federalism.
    • The truth is the national popular vote bill is the EMBODIMENT of states' rights.
    • Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution specifically confers upon states the right to allocate their electoral votes as they see fit.
    • The principal of states' rights in the Constitution is the very foundation for the national popular vote bill. This bill could not exist if it were not for the guarantee of states' rights.
    • You will be told that the Electoral College encourages candidates to campaign in all areas of the country and to have broad-based support.
    • A quick glance at a map of presidential election results will tell you that's not true.
    • There is no red to be found in the Northeast or on the West Coast. There is no blue in the Deep South or the Mountain West states. Where is this mythical regional balance?
    • It's not just the map that tells you there is no campaign conducted in most of the country.
    • Candidates spend 99% of their resources — advertising, campaign visits, field operations — in just 15 states. Again, no broad based campaigning going on in the real world.
    • You will be told that under a national popular vote big cities and urban areas would dominate presidential elections.
    • It's unlikely that urban areas will dominate a presidential election when they don't even determine the winner of a state election.
    • George Deukmejian and Pete Wilson never carried Los Angeles or San Francisco or Oakland and yet they both won multiple statewide elections.
    • George Pataki was elected Governor of New York despite losing New York City.
    • In closing members, let me say that AB 459 and the national popular vote proposal is a very simple bill.
    • The presidential candidate who receives the most votes in all 50 states will be elected President.
    • The candidate with the most votes will win the election.
    • I ask for an "aye" vote.

    Reform the Electoral College so that the electoral vote reflects the nationwide popular vote for President