Continuing the recent trend, the turnout at the Kent County Libertarian Party meeting for June grew from our May total of around 20 people to more than 30. Please help us to continue this astonishing growth by telling your friends, coworkers, and neighbors about our meetings and the opportunity they provide each resident of Kent County to become more involved in their local political process and to hold our elected officials accountable to their constituents instead of their favorite special interests.
By far the most pressing of the items discussed at the June meeting was the bylaws draft for the Kent County Libertarian Party. Included in these bylaws are a transparent and open process for spending the money raised on behalf of the Kent County Libertarians. The bylaws also codify a typical agenda for the monthly meetings and lay a solid groundwork for establishing similarly open and transparent processes for carrying out all of the activities of the County Party. These bylaws will be ratified, and the nominated Executive Committee members, Richard Bieker, Jeff Munn, and Richard Cook will be confirmed at the next monthly meeting on July 20th. Please review these bylaws on the forums, offer any suggestions or questions, and prepare to vote on the 20th.
Much of the meeting's agenda was booked up with Guest Speakers. We were privileged to have three candidates in attendance. Norman Wood, the Democratic candidate for Kent County Sheriff came and gave a brief presentation on his plans should he be elected. He addressed the lack of arresting authority held by the Kent County Sheriff and discussed the need to update their communications technology to avoid interfering with cell phone transmissions, among other issues. Ron Poliquin, a candidate for the Republican nomination in the 31st State Representative District came and discussed his record of fighting for taxpayers against the establishment and some of his plans for saving money on a state level before taking questions from the audience. Christine O'Donnell, a candidate for the Republican nomination to the US Senate was also present and offered her views on the current state of our country and the steps she believes are necessary to remedy them. While she was eager to appeal to those in attendance currently registered in the Republican Party, she was also respectful of the Libertarian Party's candidate for US Senate, Jim Rash.
The candidate presentations went on longer than expected and unfortunately crowded out some other items on the agenda for the month, but Tim Pancoast was still able to make an informative presentation on the changes being considered to the Delaware History Curriculum. Under the veneer of providing "balance", a commission of union leaders has been assembled to modify the curriculum. Tim and the assembled membership of the Kent County Libertarian Party wonder what balance can be offered without the inclusion of business leaders, economists, and historians on this panel. Tim also discussed a new initiative to expand the school breakfast program using a one-time injection of stimulus dollars from the federal government. In addition to further expanding the role of the schools in raising our children at the expense of the parents' relationship, this program demonstrates the short-term thinking and big-spending tendencies of a government taking advantage of a short-term increase in revenues with no thought or planning for the future after these funds are no longer available. Tim encouraged everyone assembled to get in contact with their legislators to voice their concerns on these changes.
Jesse McVay was also able to make a presentation on HB198, the National Popular Vote bill currently before the Senate Executive Committee. This bill has been promoted heavily by organizations outside of Delaware through the Advantage Research Corporation under misleading pretenses. Without further information available to their staff, Advantage Research has been portraying HB198 as an effective mechanism for expanding Delaware's influence in the presidential process by effectively abolishing the electoral college. Rather than the 0.5% influence Delaware holds by virtue of its 3 electoral votes, the National Popular Vote would reduce Delaware's influence to approximately 0.2% in proportion with Delaware's share of the national population. Jesse encouraged all members of the Kent County Libertarian Party to contact their legislators and voice their opposition to this bill as well as warn them of the deceptive manner in which it is being promoted by its supporters.
Please remember that the next monthly meeting will be held on July 20th at the same time and place. Please contact Will McVay, the Kent County Chair, with any suggestions or questions for the next meeting or any other issues.
Thank you for your supporting the Kent County Libertarian Party!
Kent County Chair,
Delaware Libertarian Party
On June 14th the League of Women Voters endorsed the National Popular Vote bill (HB 198) at their annual convention in Atlanta.ReplyDelete
A survey of 800 Delaware voters conducted on December 21-22, 2008 showed 75% overall support for a national popular vote for President.ReplyDelete
Support was 79% among Democrats, 69% among Republicans, and 76% among independents.
By age, support was 71% among 18-29 year olds, 70% among 30-45 year olds, 77% among 46-65 year olds, and 77% for those older than 65.
By gender, support was 81% among women and 69% among men.
The small states are the most disadvantaged group of states under the current system of electing the President. Political clout comes from being a closely divided battleground state, not the two-vote bonus.ReplyDelete
12 of the 13 smallest states (3-4 electoral votes) are almost invariably non-competitive, and ignored, in presidential elections. Six regularly vote Republican (Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota),, and six regularly vote Democratic (Rhode Island, Delaware, Hawaii, Vermont, Maine, and DC) in presidential elections. So despite the fact that these 12 states together possess 40 electoral votes, because they are not closely divided battleground states, none of these 12 states get visits, advertising or polling or policy considerations by presidential candidates.
These 12 states together contain 11 million people. Because of the two electoral-vote bonus that each state receives, the 12 non-competitive small states have 40 electoral votes. However, the two-vote bonus is an entirely illusory advantage to the small states. Ohio has 11 million people and has "only" 20 electoral votes. As we all know, the 11 million people in Ohio are the center of attention in presidential campaigns, while the 11 million people in the 12 non-competitive small states are utterly irrelevant. Nationwide election of the President would make each of the voters in the 12 smallest states as important as an Ohio voter.
The concept of a national popular vote for President is far from being politically "radioactive" in small states, because the small states recognize they are the most disadvantaged group of states under the current system.
In the 13 smallest states, the National Popular Vote bill already has been approved by eight state legislative chambers, including one house in Delaware and Maine and both houses in Hawaii, Rhode Island, and Vermont. It has been enacted by Hawaii.
The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC).ReplyDelete
Every vote, everywhere, would be politically relevant and equal in presidential elections. Candidates would need to care about voters across the nation, not just undecided voters in a handful of swing states.
The bill would take effect only when enacted, in identical form, by states possessing a majority of the electoral votes--that is, enough electoral votes to elect a President (270 of 538). When the bill comes into effect, all the electoral votes from those states would be awarded to the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC).
The bill uses the power given to each state by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution to change how they award their electoral votes for president. The National Popular Vote bill does not try to abolish the Electoral College, which would need a constitutional amendment, and could be stopped by states with as little as 3% of the U.S. population. Historically, virtually all of the major changes in the method of electing the President (for example, ending the requirement that only men who owned substantial property could vote) have come about without federal constitutional amendments, by state legislative action.
The bill has been endorsed or voted for by 1,922 state legislators (in 50 states) who have sponsored and/or cast recorded votes in favor of the bill.
In Gallup polls since 1944, only about 20% of the public has supported the current system of awarding all of a state's electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the most votes in each separate state (with about 70% opposed and about 10% undecided). The recent Washington Post, Kaiser Family Foundation, and Harvard University poll shows 72% support for direct nationwide election of the President. Support for a national popular vote is strong in virtually every state, partisan, and demographic group surveyed in recent polls in closely divided battleground states: Colorado-- 68%, Iowa --75%, Michigan-- 73%, Missouri-- 70%, New Hampshire-- 69%, Nevada-- 72%, New Mexico-- 76%, North Carolina-- 74%, Ohio-- 70%, Pennsylvania -- 78%, Virginia -- 74%, and Wisconsin -- 71%; in smaller states (3 to 5 electoral votes): Alaska -- 70%, DC -- 76%, Delaware --75%, Maine -- 77%, Nebraska -- 74%, New Hampshire --69%, Nevada -- 72%, New Mexico -- 76%, Rhode Island -- 74%, and Vermont -- 75%; in Southern and border states: Arkansas --80%, Kentucky -- 80%, Mississippi --77%, Missouri -- 70%, North Carolina -- 74%, and Virginia -- 74%; and in other states polled: California -- 70%, Connecticut -- 74% , Massachusetts -- 73%, Minnesota -- 75%, New York -- 79%, Washington -- 77%, and West Virginia- 81%.
The National Popular Vote bill has passed 30 state legislative chambers, in 20 small, medium-small, medium, and large states, including one house in Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, and Oregon, and both houses in California, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington. The bill has been enacted by Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, Maryland, and Washington. These five states possess 61 electoral votes -- 23% of the 270 necessary to bring the law into effect.