You can help fix the Electoral College by taking action prior to the Colorado Senate committee hearing on Wednesday February 15 on the National Popular Vote bill.
- Express your opinion at the hearing at 1:30 PM in room 357 at the state Capitol in Denver, or from the remote locations connected to hearing in La Junta, Grand Junction, Trinidad, Alamosa, and Durango.
- Send an email to the five committee members using our convenient email system. Your message will also go to your own state representative and senator and other statewide officials.
- Phone the five committee members prior to the hearing: Senators Ray Scott (303-866-3077), Vicki Marble (303-866-4876), Jerry Sonnenberg 303-866-6360), Lois Court (303-866-4861), and Steve Fenberg (303-866-4872).
The National Popular Vote bill (Senate Bill SB 17-099) would guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. It would make every vote for President equal throughout the United States.
Five out of our 45 Presidents have come into office without winning the most popular votes nationwide. State winner-take-all laws are the reason why a candidate can win the Presidency without winning the national popular vote. Under these state laws, all of a state’s electoral votes are awarded to the candidate receiving the most popular votes in each separate state. If these state laws are not changed in this current era of close presidential elections (with the average margin in the national popular vote being only 5% since 1988), undemocratic outcomes will happen again.
It does not take an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to change state winner-take-all laws. These laws were enacted by state legislatures under their authority under Article II of the U.S. Constitution:
“Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors….”
The winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes was used by only three states in the nation’s first presidential election in 1789 (and repealed by all three by 1800). It was never debated at the Constitutional Convention, and never mentioned in the Federalist Papers. It did not become predominant until 1880 — almost a century after the U.S. Constitution was written.
Under the National Popular Vote bill, the national popular vote winner will receive all of the electoral votes of the enacting states. The bill will takes effect when enacted by states possessing a majority of the electoral votes — enough to elect a President (270 of 538). Then, when the Electoral College meets in mid-December, the national popular vote winner will become President because the enacting states will represent at least 270 electoral votes. Thus, the Electoral College will represent the will of the voters in all 50 states (and DC).
A national popular vote for President is an achievable political goal that can be in place in time for the 2020 election. The bill has already been enacted into law in 11 states possessing 165 electoral votes. It will take effect when enacted by additional states having 105 electoral votes. The bill has previously passed one chamber in 12 additional states with 96 electoral votes. In Colorado, the bill has previously passed both the House and Senate (but, unfortunately, in different years). The bill was approved earlier this year by unanimous bipartisan committee votes in 2 states with an additional 26 electoral votes. A total of 2,955 state legislators have endorsed it.
Recently, the National Popular Vote bill received bipartisan support in
- 40-16 vote in the Republican-controlled Arizona House
- 28-18 vote in the Republican-controlled Oklahoma Senate
- 57-4 vote in the Republican-controlled New York Senate
- 37-21 vote in the Democratic-controlled Oregon House