"Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors ..." -- U.S. Constitution
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State Legislators
In addition to 1,129 state legislative sponsors (shown above), 981 other legislators have cast recorded votes in favor of the National Popular Vote bill.
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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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    Hawaii Reporter
    National Popular Vote Best Reflects the Will of the People of Hawaii
    Hawaii Reporter op-Ed
    By State Representative Tom Brower, D-Waikiki
    April 24, 2008

    As a legislator, I am morally compelled to advocate for the system that best reflects the will of the people. As a voter, I see national popular vote as a rational, responsible means to encouraging and protecting democracy, which is particularly advantageous for a small state like ours.'

    Currently, each state determines how its electoral votes are cast. Nearly all award them to the presidential candidate who received that state's popular vote, in a winner-take-all system. If they know they will not win them or cannot lose them, what incentives do candidates have to visit, campaign, advertise, spend money or worry about the concerns of those states that vote predominantly Republican or Democrat? Presidential candidates only need to focus on approximately 18 battleground, or swing, states to win those states' popular votes. This leaves the opinions of voters in about 32 other states ignored. (The non-battleground states are usually nine of the nation's 13 largest states, including California, Texas, New York, Illinois, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Virginia. It also includes 12 of the 13 least-populous states).

    National surveys show that 70 percent of Americans in fact support the national popular vote initiative, which has been proposed in 47 other state legislatures and here in House Bill 3013. I can cite many reasons for this overwhelming support.

    The national popular vote bill is an improvement from the current system. It would guarantee the presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states, regardless of size and population. Because it makes every vote count, it encourages more voters to participate. This helps smaller states like Hawai'i compete on a more equal political playing field with larger states.

    In 2000, the statewide winner-take-all rule created disparities in the importance of a vote. For example, Vice President Al Gore won five electoral votes by carrying New Mexico by 365 popular votes, while Bush won five electoral votes by carrying Utah by 312,043 popular votes.

    In the 2004 presidential election, we saw that candidates spent nearly 70 percent of their campaign money in just five states. More than 99 percent of their money was spent in just 16 states. Only 13 states, representing 159 of the 270 electoral votes needed to win out of the 538 total, were considered battleground states.

    Under our current system, a shift of 60,000 votes in Ohio would have given Sen. John Kerry a majority of the electoral votes, although President Bush led the popular vote nationwide by 3.5 million. A shift of just under 22,000 votes in New Mexico, Nevada and Iowa would have eliminated Bush's Electoral College majority.

    In five of the past 12 presidential elections, a transfer of a small percentage of votes in one or two states would have resulted in the second-place candidate winning.

    A state can legally amend its system on awarding their Electoral College votes.

    The current winner-take-all system is established by state law, not the U.S. Constitution or federal law. The Founding Fathers purposely did not design or advocate "this component" of electing the president; they gave each state the authority to decide. It was used by only three states in the nation's first presidential election in 1789.

    If the national popular vote is enacted, more third-party candidates would come forward because they would be able to compete. Our presidential elections would reflect this year's Democratic presidential caucuses, where every vote is meaningful and every state is important.

    When Clinton or Obama win a state's Democratic caucus, each receive a proportion of that state's delegates, a parallel percentage to the caucuses' popular vote. This is why the Democratic race is so lively and close. Sen. Hillary Clinton's urban area votes are close in number to Sen. Barack Obama's rural area votes, because both receive a significant share of votes from each other's stronghold districts.

    I believe the Presidential elections should be equally lively and well participated. Fewer decisions are as important as the individual who runs our nation for the next four years.

    Rep. Tom Brower, Democrat, is a Hawaii State Representative for Waikiki, Ala Moana and Kakaako

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