Did you hear the news?

California Governor Jerry Brown signed a paper that gives all of California’s “bazillion” electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote.

This is not a misprint. To the winner of the NATIONAL popular vote. Here is the LINK.

In other words, the votes of someone in Indiana will have as much effect on California’s electoral votes as mine, a taxpaying resident of the state of California.

Why did he do this?

Simple!

Liberals are afraid of a repeat of the Bush/Gore election where Al won the popular vote (by a hair) and George won the electoral vote (by a dimpled chad in Florida.)

Abolish the electoral college! (shouts everyone)

How silly! (shout I)

The older I get, the more I appreciate the wisdom of the founding fathers. 

On their better days, I believe they were truly inspired by God. And, like Martin Luther King, I don’t believe you can separate faith convictions from politics.

They founded the Electoral College for a reason.

A very good reason.

The envisioned each state sending its best and brightest (college presidents, business leaders, agriculturalists, journalists, clergy, intellectuals, historians, etc.) to a real meeting in Washington DC every four years. Kind of like the group that wrote the constitution in the first place….

They would choose one person to manage the country for four years. Keep it in the black. Keep it efficient.

Politicking was seen as bad form. The decision was NOT to be made ahead of time. The idea of a sitting president raising a billion (!) dollars for re-election would have resulted in deportation.

There was to be no popular vote for the president. The leaders of the country were to confer and choose one.

Why?

Because the founding fathers were afraid of two things:

1) America becoming a high-overhead imperial power (like England).

2) A spike in popular opinion putting a charismatic nut in the office of the presidency through a direct popular vote.

Thus the constitution was built with lotsa shock absorbers to cushion against instability, extremism, and hysteria.

Only the House of Representatives would fully mirror the current mood of the people. Every two years everyone is back up for election. New “movements” would get representation here (tea party, contract with America, new deal, reaganomics, great society, etc.) and a chance to gain a foothold. New ideas would be given a test drive.

The Senate was staggered so that only a third of the seats would come open at any given time. The terms were longer than the president’s; denoting higher status. They were to be chosen by state legislatures, to provide yet one more filter against extreme mood swings. The Senate was thus to be more conservative and less prone to sharp turns. They would be the ones approving foreign treaties (or basically just staying out of them).

The presidency was not an elected King/Queen. The president was to be an efficient, proven leader who could keep things on track. Not a charismatic survivor of a brutal campaign trail. Not the winner of endless debates.

George Washington was thus elected president (by a real electoral college) more or less against his will. He begged the country not to put is picture on the money and thus elevate the presidency. He insisted on “Mr. President” rather than “Your highness” or even “Your honor.” The president was to be like a city manager of a large country. Not in the news all the time.

Time to bring this great idea back. No more imperial presidency. No more sending our troops abroad without a declaration of war. No more elected emperors.

Have each state send its brightest and best; non-partisan if possible, and choose a good manager for the next four years. Peter Ueberroth would have been chosen in the 80′s after organizing the L.A. Olympics and making a profit.

Leave the electioneering to the House of Representatives, where it belongs. A popular house. Where fresh ideas are given a chance.

But the real power should be in the Senate. Longer terms than the president (six years). A compounding society of wisdom. Not susceptible to the whims of the season.

The electoral college.

A great idea.

About time we get it right.

And put the presidency in its place.

+++++++++++++++++

Please pass the link for this on to everyone else. Thanks!

Twitter: @RobinwoodChurch