The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

February 14, 2013

Forming a fairer vote

Daily Item

---- — I would like to comment on the article about the proposal (Feb 3, p.B1-2) put forth by a Republican state senator to change the way electors are chosen in Pennsylvania, from a "winner take all" system to one in which they are proportional to congressional districts. This is nothing short of the kind of gerrymandering that Republicans and Democrats fight over every 10 years when dividing the district maps after Census data comes out.

I agree the winner take all strategy is unfair, but dividing it by district favors whichever party is in the majority. I agree the electoral college system is broken and some method of splitting the votes in some states might be an improvement.

As Mr. Peeler stated, the current system encourages campaigns to ignore states that don't have many electoral votes or who will always go one way or the other. However, any method of splitting the vote should be fair to all parties. In 2000, we witnessed a fiasco over the outcome of the Florida vote and its 27 votes in Bush v. Gore, where the Supreme Court had to intervene over a recount.

I propose that larger states, with greater than (take your pick) 12, 15, or 20 votes, split the popular vote 2/3 to 1/3 in the electoral college only when the popular vote is close, say less than 10-25 percent. That way, it is completely neutral to whichever party is in power at the time, and might encourage candidates to spend more time in non-swing states.

Peter Whitcopf, Selinsgrove