Election Reforms

I realize this is probably a futile effort and not worth my time to think about, but I did work the polls today and heard more about the ballot counting process as well.

A) Election day should be a holiday - this is not a surprise, but we had people show up 1 minute after the time and they couldnt vote. There was PLENTY of opportunity to vote early, so not a real excuse for these people, but america really shouldn’t have barriers to voting like this.
B) All states should be allowed to open and start the curing process on ballots as early as possible. My state was asking poll workers to go down to the courthouse to help open and sort ballots, but seeing as how I had already gotten up super early to get to the polls, I didn’t think I could pull a 24H + shift and still be sane.
C) we really need to get rid of the electoral college - I talked to people that were voting and a lot of people that were voting for Biden really don’t think their votes mattered, but were trying anyway. In most elections, these people dont vote because it really doesnt matter in a lot of states. This goes both way.
D) Ballots need to be more clear - a lot of people had issues trying to understand what they should/shouldn’t fill out, and it wasn’t clear to me either how the ballot would be counted from reading the ballot. If you vote straight party and then fill anything else out, what happens? (note - i think it’s implied that the straight party will override anything, but we got multiple questions on this and that ballot doesn’t spell it out)

Other observations - People have no clue who to vote for on anything besides maybe 1-2 races. This was really Trump V Biden up and down the ballot for the most part where I was. If parties weren’t listed on the ballots, it would be really interesting to see how people voted, I suspect almost random distributions would show up. We had partisan poll worker designations (I was a dem), so every time someone had a question me and a republican person had to jointly answer and help people. I kinda like that they do this, but also it was very annoying when most of the questions weren’t partisan questions, but mostly basic questions about how to vote, how to vote straight party tickets, do you have to vote in each race, etc. I’m sure i have more thoughts, but that’s my brain dump from a long, long day yesterday.

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Other items - as I was watching results come in last night. the way we report results and they are reported on is both interesting and pretty dumb. slow trickle of lopsided results is weird.

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We really, really need to not get rid of the electoral college.

There are nearly no stable democracies that directly elect their countries leader. Many countries it’s not even separate from the legislature vote.


What if the 2 votes for the Senate went to the states overall winner, but each Congressional district went to the popular vote winner?

One other thing going back to how complicated it is to vote - as much as I really want ranked choice voting, people aren’t going to get it. It’s too complicated. A not insignificant portion of the voters as my precinct couldnt fill out a bubble correctly

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If political gerrymandering weren’t a thing, maybe?

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Oh, yeah, It needs some reforms because the country has grown so much, but getting rid of it is a non-starter.

Are you aware that the EC was originally designed to be proportional distribution in states, not winner take all?

Yes. Reforms are needed. Elimination would be a disaster.

Some would argue, that many states would not have joined the union if that was the case (along with equal representation in the senate).

Not that such an archaic point matters.

Just some ideas…

  1. Make registering to vote automatic. Register your address to get local elections.
  2. Separate state and local voting days from federal voting.
  3. Make the act of voting easy as possible for every person.
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On the topic of gerrymandering: all districts at state and local level need to be impartially drawn. Period. We can all cite our favorite examples of districts that are drawn in a nonsensical manner, and we all know it’s to protect one political party / hem in the other. I’m not saying if a state goes say 55/45 to one party that districts have to be drawn up such that the expected seat allocation is 55/45 without fail, but it makes no sense that a party can go say 54/46 in an election and the seat allocation ends up 40/60 or more against it.

End PACs.

yeah, I didnt get into getting money out of politics, term limits, etc. Those are not things i directly observed, but also feel like would help. Ranked choice voting to get rid of 2 party system, etc.

For those unaware, this is how we do it in Canada, we don’t vote for our PM.
The split the country into ‘ridings’. parties run candidates in most/all of the ridings. Person with the most vosts in a riding gets sent as a rep to Ottawa (called a seat). The leader of the party with the most seats becomes the prime minister. that person is just another seat (i.e. they were elected in some riding somewhere, as the rep for that riding).

I dunno if the leader of the party didn’t actually get elected as a seat, if they’d be the PM or not. I do know that we have a situation where one of the parties has a leader who is not elected.

This is just winner take all on a smaller scale. And it’s subject to gerrymandering, which is not a plus at all. It increases the incentive for exceptionally perverse gerrymandering, which is not a plus at all.

Just make it proportional. If you get 60% of the vote in a state, you get 60% of that state’s electors.

Israel uses coalitions which I think is similar. I think if you get rid of the electoral college, you would need to effectively create more parties, otherwise you will have a huge part of the population without a voice.

I can’t imagine you would have Republicans ever get enough votes to elect anyone to the Presidency if you eliminate the electoral college. This sort of defeats the purpose why it was made originally. I am not saying that it doesn’t make sense to do.

I am just saying I think you would need a different type of election process.

The problem with coalitions is every time the coalition fails you have a new vote. Which ends up being quite often.

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There’s absolutely nothing in the Constitution preventing states from doing this.

California chooses to be irrelevant in Presidential elections. They’d be relevant if their votes were allocated proportionately. Then winning CA by 70% would be different from winning it by 55%.

But they’d rather show fierce loyalty to the Democratic Party.

And I’m just picking on them because they’re big and especially irrelevant. Every other state makes the same call of being WTA. Including Maine and Nebraska, just on a smaller scale.

That sounds like a monumental hassle. What possible advantage is there to this?