','subtitle>',$line); echo $line; $line = "\n"; } else if (strstr($line, '','updated>',$line); } else if (strstr($line, '','published>',$line); } else if (strstr($line, ' Impractical Proposals <br> Santa Monica: 2008: California Proposal Could Sway Outcome of Race


2008: California Proposal Could Sway Outcome of Race

By Michael R. Blood (Associated Press, 2007-07-31)

LOS ANGELES (AP) - A Republican-backed ballot proposal could split left-leaning California between the Democratic and GOP nominees, tilting the 2008 presidential election in favor of the Republicans.

California awards its cache of 55 electoral votes to the statewide winner in presidential elections - the largest single prize in the nation. But a prominent Republican lawyer wants to put a proposal on the ballot that would award the statewide winner only two electoral votes.

The rest would be distributed to the winning candidate in each of the state's congressional districts. In effect, that would create 53 races, each with one electoral vote up for grabs.

California has voted Democratic in the last four presidential elections. But the change - if it qualifies for one of two primary ballots next year and is approved by voters - would mean that a Republican would be positioned the following November to snatch 20 or more electoral votes in GOP-leaning districts.

That's a number equal to winning Ohio....

Democratic consultant Chris Lehane called the plan "an effort to rig the system in order to fix the election.''

"If this change is made, it will virtually guarantee that a Republican wins the White House in 2008,'' Lehane said

Nineteen of the state's 53 congressional districts are represented by Republicans. President Bush carried 22 districts in 2004, while losing the statewide vote by double digits....

The rest of the story.
Although this proposal is being made in order to help the national Republicans in case of a close race in the electoral college, it is clearly more democratic than the current winner-take-all system. But even better would be proportional representation; not only would apportioning the vote on the basis of the real tally be fairer to Democratic and Republican voters, but it would mean that voters who support Green, Peace and Freedom, or independent candidates could send their delegates to the electoral college where, again if a race is close, they might turn out to be decisive. -- J.

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