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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 2, 2010 / 22 Menachem-Av, 5770

Electoral College bypassers should be careful what they wish for

By Jeff Jacoby

Jeff Jacoby




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It is election night, 2012. The polls have closed. State by state, the votes are being counted, and gradually it becomes clear, to the bottomless horror of some voters and the unbridled delight of others, that former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, the Republican presidential nominee, has bested President Barack Obama in the popular vote nationwide.

In Massachusetts, where Obama crushed Palin by a landslide of 79 percent -- the most lopsidedly anti-Palin vote of any state -- "bottomless horror" doesn't begin to describe the political reaction. For in 2010, Massachusetts joined the National Popular Vote compact, making a commitment to cast all of its electoral votes for the presidential candidate receiving the most votes nationally, regardless of the results in Massachusetts. The compact took effect in December 2011, when California became the 15th state to join, thereby combining enough states to control a majority of the Electoral College. Now Massachusetts, the bluest of the blue states, must award its presidential electors to a candidate Massachusetts voters overwhelmingly opposed.


Well, that's one scenario. Maybe it won't be Sarah Palin, maybe it won't be 2012, but sooner or later a Republican is going to win the largest number of votes in a presidential election, and that Republican probably isn't going to carry Massachusetts. What will Bay State liberals and Democrats say when the National Popular Vote compact that so many of them endorsed requires Massachusetts electors to line up behind the Republican? Imagine if Massachusetts had been compelled to give its electoral votes in 1972 not to George McGovern, but to Richard Nixon. Or to the first George Bush in 1988, instead of Michael Dukakis. Or to Bush the Younger -- not John Kerry -- in 2004.

As the National Popular Vote bill was making its way through the state Legislature last month, the chairman of the Election Laws Committee, Senator Thomas Kennedy, warned opponents against trying to block it. "We're committed to this," he said. "It's the will of the people." The will of which people? Not the people of Massachusetts: The whole point of this scheme is to frustrate their will. From now on, anytime Massachusetts voters march to the beat of a different political drummer than most of their countrymen, the National Popular Vote compact will make sure their votes don't count.

Massachusetts is the sixth state to approve this end run around the Constitution, following Illinois, New Jersey, Hawaii, Maryland, and Washington. It is no coincidence that all six are Democratic strongholds. This movement is fueled by lingering Democratic resentment of George W. Bush, and of the Electoral College system that made him president in 2000, even though Al Gore drew more popular votes. It is a comical irony that if the compact ever goes into effect, its only practical impact in these states will be to occasionally award their presidential electors to the Republican nominees their voters reject.

Democrats talk about 2000 as though it represented some colossal subversion of democracy. "Something happened in the 2000 presidential election that should never be permitted to happen again," writes Michael Dukakis in the Salem News. "The candidate who failed to win the popular vote became president of the United States."

But the national popular vote total has no constitutional significance and never has. American presidents are not elected in a single national plebiscite. They are elected by the 50 states (plus the District of Columbia), each of which holds a democratic election to determine its vote in the Electoral College. In political scientist Matthew Franck's terminology, US presidential elections are federally democratic, not nationally democratic.

In the selection of presidents as in so many other areas -- from the equal representation of the states in the Senate to the supermajorities required to override vetoes -- the Framers of the Constitution rejected blind majority rule. For more than two centuries, the formula they devised has resulted in stable and peaceful governance. That is no small achievement in a nation as vast, diverse, and complicated as this one.

Can the Electoral College be improved on? Not with the National Popular Vote scheme, it can't. Most Americans will never accept a system that operates through the nullification of their vote. Today Massachusetts politicians may like the idea of awarding their state's electors to the most popular presidential candidate. Watch how fast they change their minds the first time that candidate is a Republican.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Jeff Jacoby is a Boston Globe columnist. Comment by clicking here.

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