Friday, July 1

Why the Democrats are Losing Elections

Washington, DC has a relatively new newspaper in town. I have little free time to kick back and read a paper; besides I can read all the news I want from the new. But I have found this paper interesting, and best of all it’s free. So I am now in the habit of grabbing a copy each morning on the walk to my car. Just in case I get a moment to flip through it. It time I do, I find it most interesting.

Take the 30 June edition. It has an opinion piece titled “The Republican Advantage.” The opinion places the blame on why Democrats are losing elections on the election process and the way our government is setup to create a balance of power. For facts, the writer, Steven Hall, points out that democratic candidates won 51 % of votes cast for Senatorial Candidates yet the Republicans hold a majority in the Senate. Of course the 51% Democratic majority is nationally. When it is broken down by state, then we have the results as reflected in the Senate.

Now Mr. Hill claims that the Senate is the “most unrepresentative body in the world.” I find this hard to swallow. Any person who managed to stay awake in school knows that the senate is designed to give each state equal representation. Sure, there are many more people in NY that have to share New York’s two Senators than say in Montana. But their job is to represent your state, not you personally. So it does not mater if you live in a great state or a crappy state, your guaranteed two Senators. (Your not guaranteed a famous Senator though, Like Mrs. Clinton.)

Your Representative is in the House of Representatives. More populous states have more representatives. This of course is also biased against Democrats according to Hall as each Democratic Representative represents more citizens than Republican Representatives. Now this might be true, considering that no matter how few people live in a state, they still get at least one Representative. The total number of Representatives is fixed at 435. So as the population of the most populous states gets larger, each representative will naturally represent more citizens. The low-population states can lose citizens and still maintain at least one Representative.

This might be slightly unfair to urban centers, but it is not exactly fair to the country folk either. For example, there are many Representatives representing parts of New York City and only one Representative each for all of Montana, Alaska, Delaware, South Dakota, North Dakota, Vermont, and Wyoming. Each of these states has three total representatives when you include the Senators. New York has 29 Representatives. California has 53 (plus two Senators.) Each of these two large states has more votes in congress than all the small states I mentioned.

Now the system was setup this way to balance between the urban states and the country states and lets face it, if the Presidential election was a straight popular vote, candidates would spend all their time in the most populous states and avoid the middle ‘flyover’ part of the country. Mr. Hall points out that according to a populous vote, Gore would have been elected President in 2000. However he neglects to mention in his article that President Bush won the populous vote this time around.

I found his article an interesting read. I think the story would have been more complete if he mentioned the Opinion Journal piece:

The Empty Cradle Will Rock, How abortion is costing the Democrats voters--literally.

This is a great evaluation on how abortion is reducing the number of Democrat leaning voters to a much greater extent than Republican leaning voters:

“The more ideologically Democratic the voters are (self-identified liberals), the more abortions they have. The more ideologically Republican the voters are (self-identified conservatives), the fewer abortions they have.”

I would have loved to have read his interpretation on how apportion is biased against Democrats.

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