Faithless Electors

A Place to respectfully discuss those topics that you should never discuss.
post

Faithless Electors

Postby Corsair » Mon Nov 21, 2016 9:43 pm

Little known among voters is the idea of faithless electors in the electoral college. The electoral college has become a buoy for Democrats who cry foul that despite the fact that 1.7 million more people voted for Hillary than Trump, Trump looks to be the victor. Many people have called for the banishment of this system, in favor of a popular vote election.

But there have been rumblings among Democratic electors trying to convince Republican electors to switch their vote. Not to elect Hillary, but to drop Trump below the 270 threshold. Whereby the Republican controlled House of Representatives could select the next President (who wouldn't have even needed to be a candidate, like Paul Ryan).

It's a nightmare scenario for many reasons... but the article below brings up some good points.

Particularly that the electoral college was created almost specifically for this scenario.

The Electoral College Was Meant to Stop Men Like Trump From Being President
The founders envisioned electors as people who could prevent an irresponsible demagogue from taking office.

Americans talk about democracy like it’s sacred. In public discourse, the more democratic American government is, the better. The people are supposed to rule.

But that’s not the premise that underlies America’s political system. Most of the men who founded the United States feared unfettered majority rule. James Madison wrote in Federalist 10 that systems of government based upon “pure democracy … have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property.” John Adams wrote in 1814 that, “Democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts and murders itself.”

The framers constructed a system that had democratic features. The people had a voice. They could, for instance, directly elect members of the House of Representatives. But the founders also self-consciously limited the people’s voice.

The Bill of Rights is undemocratic. It limits the federal government’s power in profound ways, ways the people often dislike. Yet the people can do almost nothing about it. The Supreme Court is undemocratic, too. Yes, the people elect the president (kind of, more on that later), who appoints justices of the Supreme Court, subject to approval by the Senate, which these days is directly elected, too. But after that, the justices wield their extraordinary power for as long as they wish without any democratic accountability. The vast majority of Americans may desperately want their government to do something. The Supreme Court can say no. The people then lose, unless they pass a constitutional amendment, which is extraordinarily difficult, or those Supreme Court justices die.

That’s the way the framers wanted it. And, oddly, it’s the way most contemporary Americans want it too. Americans say they revere democracy. Yet they also revere those rights—freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the right to bear arms—that the government’s least democratic institutions protect. Americans rarely contemplate these contradictions. If they did, they might be more open to preventing Donald Trump from becoming the next president, the kind of democratic catastrophe that the Constitution, and the Electoral College in particular, were in part designed to prevent.

Donald Trump was not elected on November 8. Under the Constitution, the real election will occur on December 19. That’s when the electors in each state cast their votes.

The Constitution says nothing about the people as a whole electing the president. It says in Article II that “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors.” Those electors then vote for president and vice-president. They can be selected “in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct.” Which is to say, any way the state legislature wants. In 14 states in the early 19th century, state legislatures chose their electors directly. The people did not vote at all.

This ambiguity about how to choose the electors was the result of a compromise. James Madison and some other framers favored some manner of popular vote for president. Others passionately opposed it. Some of the framers wanted Congress to choose the president. Many white southerners supported the Electoral College because it counted their non-voting slaves as three-fifths of a person, and thus gave the South more influence than it would have enjoyed in a national vote. The founders compromised by leaving it up to state legislatures. State legislatures could hand over the selection of electors to the people as a whole. In that case, the people would have a voice in choosing their president. But—and here’s the crucial point—the people’s voice would still not be absolute. No matter how they were selected, the electors would retain the independence to make their own choice.

It is “desirable,” Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist 68, “that the sense of the people should operate in the choice of” president. But is “equally desirable, that the immediate election should be made by men most capable of analyzing the qualities adapted to the station.” These “men”—the electors––would be “most likely to possess the information and discernment requisite to such complicated investigations.” And because of their discernment—because they possessed wisdom that the people as a whole might not—“the office of President will never fall to the lot of any man who is not in an eminent degree endowed with the requisite qualifications.”

As Michael Signer explains, the framers were particularly afraid of the people choosing a demagogue. The electors, Hamilton believed, would prevent someone with “talents for low intrigue, and the little arts of popularity” from becoming president. And they would combat “the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils.” They would prevent America’s adversaries from meddling in its elections. The founders created the Electoral College, in other words, in part to prevent the election of someone like Donald Trump.

To modern American ears, it sounds insanely undemocratic for electors to ignore the will of the people of their state. But were Hamilton alive, he might wonder why Americans find this undemocratic feature of the Electoral College so outrageous while taking its other undemocratic features virtually for granted. For instance, each state gets as many electors as it has members of the House of Representatives and Senate. (The District of Columbia now gets a few, too). That is itself undemocratic. It’s undemocratic because while representatives are allocated between the states via population, senators are not. Each state gets two: Whether it has 38 million people (California) or half a million (Wyoming). Because states, not people, are represented equally in the Senate, the Senate is undemocratic. And because a state’s number of electors is based partly on its number of senators, the Electoral College is thus partially undemocratic too.

Moreover, every state except Nebraska and Maine allocates its electors based on the principle of winner take all. Win California by one vote and you get all its electors. For that reason, too, the Electoral College does not always reflect the popular vote. In two of the last five presidential elections, in fact, the candidate who received the most votes—Al Gore in 2000 and Hillary Clinton in 2016—has lost the Electoral College. Americans are mildly but not profoundly disturbed by this. Most of the people protesting Donald Trump’s election are not protesting because he lost the popular vote. When George W. Bush became president after losing the popular vote in 2000, there were protests, but no real question about the inevitability of his taking office. In this way, as in many others, Americans comfortably accept undemocratic elements of America’s system of government even as they profess publicly that democracy is sacrosanct.

In truth, Americans are wedded less to democracy than to familiarity. They accept those undemocratic features of the Electoral College, and of American government in general, to which they’re accustomed. They value things as they are.

This makes sense. Americans are used to choosing presidents in a particular way. As the University of Michigan constitutional law professor Richard Primus pointed out to me, they’re like a family that for as long as anyone can remember has been playing a board game by a certain set of rules. What happens if, in the middle of a game, one player consults the instructions, finds that the actual rules are different, and proposes suddenly abiding by them instead? The other players—especially those who would be disadvantaged by the change—will likely refuse.

Were the electors to meet on December 19 and decide that Donald Trump is unfit to be president, all hell would break loose. Trump’s supporters, and even some who opposed him, would say the election had been stolen. Their worst fears about America’s “rigged” system of government would be confirmed. The president who the electors chose—even if it were Hillary Clinton, who beat Trump by over a million votes—would lack legitimacy in the eyes of much of the public. It’s unclear whether such a president could effectively govern. Violence might break out. Moreover, once the precedent was set, future electors would become more likely to act independently again. The process of choosing them would grow fraught. America’s entire system of presidential elections would grow unstable.

It’s a terrifying prospect. The prospect of a Trump presidency, however, is terrifying too, terrifying in unprecedented ways. Which is why, for the first time in modern American history, there’s a plausible case for urging the electors to vote their consciences. The case is not overwhelming. But it’s not absurd. It all depends on how dangerous you think President Trump would be.

Could the danger posed by electing Trump exceed the enormous danger posed by stopping him? It could, for four reasons.

The first is climate change. Trump has repeatedly called it a “hoax.” He’s vowed to “cancel” America’s obligations under the climate agreement signed last year in Paris, which might lead other nations to do the same, and to undo the restrictions on emissions from coal-fired power plants instituted by the Obama administration. According to a study by Lux Research, America’s annual carbon emissions, which would have dropped under a Clinton presidency, will rise sharply under Trump. And if emissions don’t drop, an article this spring in the journal Nature predicts that 13 million Americans who live in coastal areas could find their communities uninhabitable over the next century. Half of Florida’s population would be at risk.

The second reason to think that allowing a Trump presidency might be more dangerous than overturning it is the threat of nuclear war. At several points over the last 70 years, presidents have faced decisions that could have trigged nuclear catastrophe. Harry Truman considered dropping atomic bombs on North Korea in 1950. John F. Kennedy famously said during the Cuban missile crisis that the chances of war with the Soviet Union were “between 1 in 3 and even.” According to Israeli historian Dmitry Adamsky, the Reagan administration’s 1983 war game, Able Archer, which the Soviets misinterpreted as preparation for an American attack, “almost became a prelude to a preventative nuclear strike.” As Jeffrey Goldberg has noted, North Korea—the most bellicose and erratic regime on earth--may have nuclear missiles that can reach the US mainland by the end of Trump’s second term. Which increases the chances that he could face his own moment of nuclear reckoning. In August, MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough reported that, during a private meeting with a “foreign policy expert,” Trump had asked the expert “three times, in an hour briefing, ‘Why can’t we use nuclear weapons?’” In March, Trump asked Chris Matthews, “Somebody hits us within ISIS — you wouldn’t fight back with a nuke?” Trump has also repeatedly declared his desire to be “unpredictable” when it comes to the use of nuclear weapons.

The president can launch nuclear weapons within minutes, on his own authority. In the words of former National Security Agency Director Michael Hayden, “The system is designed for speed and decisiveness. It’s not designed to debate the decision.” Trump is famous for his impulsivity (his self-destructive late night tweets almost cost him the presidential race), his policy ignorance (he twice during the campaign seemed unaware that the US has nuclear weapons on air, land and sea) and his dismissive attitude toward experts (in November he boasted that, “I know more about ISIS than the generals do.”) Which is why 50 former Republican national security officials warned in August that he “would be the most reckless president in American history.”

Does all this mean that, under President Trump, nuclear war is likely? No. But it does mean that it’s significantly more likely than under Hillary Clinton or any other plausible alternative.

The third reason it’s not crazy for electors to consider defying the popular will in their states is the prospect of what Trump might do in the event of a terrorist attack. Last November, Trump said he’d require Muslims to register in a government database. In December, after jihadist terrorists killed 14 people and seriously injured 22 in San Bernardino, California, he demanded a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.”

Trump has also barred numerous reporters from his rallies, vowed to make it easier to sue journalists for libel and called for investigating Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos’ tax returns in retaliation for his paper’s critical coverage of Trump’s campaign.

What might a President Trump do if terrorists killed hundreds or even thousands on American soil? During times of war and cold war, even more sober presidents have massively violated individual freedom. During World War I, Woodrow Wilson signed the Sedition Act, which made “uttering, printing, writing, or publishing any disloyal, profane, scurrilous, or abusive language about the United States government or military” a crime. FDR interned Japanese-Americans during World War II. John F. Kennedy allowed J. Edgar Hoover to bug Martin Luther King’s phone. We don’t know how Trump would respond in a moment of national hysteria, when restricting press freedom and persecuting unpopular minorities became seductively easy. We do know that, based on his past statements, he’d be less restrained by the Bill of Rights than any president in recent memory.

The final reason it’s worth debating an Electoral College rejection of Trump is the potential that his presidency could spark a constitutional crisis. During the campaign, in a stunning break from American tradition, Trump repeatedly suggested that he might not accept the outcome. As one Trump ally told Politico, “If he loses, [he’ll say] ‘It’s a rigged election…I can’t really picture him giving a concession speech, whatever the final margin.”

If defeated in his bid for a second term, would Trump leave the White House? Would he leave if Congress impeached him? Would he abide by a decision of the Supreme Court that thwarted his agenda? “I can easily see a situation in which he would take the Andrew Jackson line,” declared the eminent libertarian-conservative legal scholar Richard Epstein in June. “[Chief Justice] John Marshall has made his decision; now let him enforce it.”

The problem with all these hypothetical scenarios is that they’re just that: hypothetical. The dangers posed by a Trump presidency are speculative. The dangers posed by using the Electoral College to forestall a Trump presidency are more certain. Moreover, some of the very characteristics that make a Trump presidency so frightening also make his response to being defeated by the electors frightening. If Trump was prepared to the contest defeat on November 8, it’s hard to imagine him accepting it on December 19.

Luckily for Trump, the chances of the electors actually defeating him on that date are extremely slim. Two electors from states that supported Hillary Clinton are reportedly trying to convince their colleagues from states that supported Trump to vote for other Republicans, thus denying Trump a majority and sending the presidential election to the House of Representatives.

But these days, electors are not the independent-minded figures Hamilton envisioned. They’re party activists chosen for their loyalty. Many states even have laws requiring electors to abide by the popular vote, though David Pozen, a law professor at Columbia (and author of a smart recent blog post on Trump and the Electoral College) told me that such laws may well be unconstitutional.

If it’s so unlikely that the electors would defeat Trump, why is the topic even worth discussing? Because, given Trump’s likely ascension to the presidency, Americans must talk differently about democracy itself. Yes, the democratic features of America’s political system are precious. But so are some of the undemocratic ones, the ones that prevent people’s basic rights from being taken from them by a show of hands. Right now, the nature of American public discourse—which treats democracy as an unambiguous good—makes that difficult to say. Rarely do Americans publicly acknowledge the tradeoff between democracy and liberty, between popular will and minority rights, which so concerned the framers. If Trump threatens the rights of Muslims or journalists, if he pressures the Federal Reserve or defies the Supreme Court, he will likely do so in democracy’s name. He may have public opinion on his side. If Americans can’t defend their system’s limitations on democracy, they’ll have trouble resisting him.

Democracy is a crucial component of American government. But, as Fareed Zakaria has argued, more democracy isn’t always better. For most of American history, political parties were not internally democratic. They aren’t in most democracies around the world. Yet during the primaries, when GOP elites sought to block Trump’s nomination, the media generally described their efforts as undemocratic. Which made them almost impossible to publicly defend.

I didn’t defend them either. I was wrong. Before this election, I supported abolishing the Electoral College. Now I think America needs electors who, in times of national emergency, can prevent demagogues from taking power.

Go ahead and call me an elitist; Donald Trump has changed the way I view American government. Before this year, I would have considered Hamilton’s demand for independent-minded electors who could prevent candidates with “talents for low intrigue, and the little arts of popularity” from winning the presidency to be antiquated and retrograde. Now I think the framers were prescient and I was naïve. Eighteen months ago, I could never have imagined President Donald Trump. Now I’m grateful that, two hundred and twenty-seven years ago, they did.
Image
User avatar
Corsair
 
Posts: 3996
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:25 am
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 243 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby deltbucs » Mon Nov 21, 2016 9:59 pm

This ain't happening. Trump has embraced the establishment and visa vera. He would have to do the stupidest thing yet for something like this to happen.
Image
deltbucs
 
Posts: 2763
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 2:28 pm
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 208 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby PrimeMinister » Tue Nov 22, 2016 3:56 am

deltbucs wrote:This ain't happening. Trump has embraced the establishment and visa vera. He would have to do the stupidest thing yet for something like this to happen.


What could he possibly do to push people this route?
PrimeMinister
 
Posts: 4582
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:34 am
Has thanked: 21 times
Been thanked: 132 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Mountaineer Buc » Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:25 am

PrimeMinister wrote:
deltbucs wrote:This ain't happening. Trump has embraced the establishment and visa vera. He would have to do the stupidest thing yet for something like this to happen.


What could he possibly do to push people this route?

Sex Tape?
Image
User avatar
Mountaineer Buc
 
Posts: 6155
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:15 pm
Has thanked: 64 times
Been thanked: 392 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby bucfanclw » Tue Nov 22, 2016 10:01 am

Mountaineer Buc wrote:
PrimeMinister wrote:
What could he possibly do to push people this route?

Sex Tape?

Image
User avatar
bucfanclw
 
Posts: 1970
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 4:09 pm
Has thanked: 11 times
Been thanked: 107 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby MJW » Wed Nov 23, 2016 11:16 pm

Not to put too fine a point on it, but if the loathsome idiot Trump isn't sworn into office in January, the country will burn to the ground. It's cute when folks rebel against the system by making signs and wearing V for Vendetta cosplay. It's less cute when the silent Cliven Bundy majority mount up.
Image
User avatar
MJW
 
Posts: 5299
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:17 am
Location: Nebraska
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 236 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Babeinbucland » Wed Nov 23, 2016 11:39 pm

I would rather see rioting for weeks then have Trump in the oval office for four years
User avatar
Babeinbucland
 
Posts: 2885
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 9:24 pm
Has thanked: 85 times
Been thanked: 69 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby MJW » Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:20 am

Babeinbucland wrote:I would rather see rioting for weeks then have Trump in the oval office for four years


Rioting for weeks?

No, no, no.

Civil War. Blood in the streets. And more importantly, the end of Republicanism and the American experiment in general.

Are you actually willing to embrace that?
Image
User avatar
MJW
 
Posts: 5299
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:17 am
Location: Nebraska
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 236 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Wharf Rat » Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:45 am

****ing get over it already. Trump won. Some of us felt the same way each time Obama was elected, but life went on.
Last edited by Wharf Rat on Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
Wharf Rat
 
Posts: 635
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:27 am
Has thanked: 125 times
Been thanked: 19 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Wharf Rat » Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:47 am

Babeinbucland wrote:I would rather see rioting for weeks then have Trump in the oval office for four years


I'd rather watch you drink muriatic acid, but we can't always get what we want.
Wharf Rat
 
Posts: 635
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:27 am
Has thanked: 125 times
Been thanked: 19 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Corsair » Thu Nov 24, 2016 12:32 pm

MJW wrote:Not to put too fine a point on it, but if the loathsome idiot Trump isn't sworn into office in January, the country will burn to the ground. It's cute when folks rebel against the system by making signs and wearing V for Vendetta cosplay. It's less cute when the silent Cliven Bundy majority mount up.

That was kinda the point of the article, did you read it?

It is a nightmare scenario, but is it really worse than a Demagogue taking power? A leader who has threatened nuclear attacks? A leader who will deny climate science at it's most critical time?
Image
User avatar
Corsair
 
Posts: 3996
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:25 am
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 243 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby HamBone » Thu Nov 24, 2016 1:24 pm

Babeinbucland wrote:I would rather see rioting for weeks then have Trump in the oval office for four years


Lucky for you...you are gonna be ablento see both!
HamBone
 
Posts: 1547
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:34 am
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 53 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby MJW » Thu Nov 24, 2016 11:35 pm

Corsair wrote:
MJW wrote:Not to put too fine a point on it, but if the loathsome idiot Trump isn't sworn into office in January, the country will burn to the ground. It's cute when folks rebel against the system by making signs and wearing V for Vendetta cosplay. It's less cute when the silent Cliven Bundy majority mount up.

That was kinda the point of the article, did you read it?

It is a nightmare scenario, but is it really worse than a Demagogue taking power? A leader who has threatened nuclear attacks? A leader who will deny climate science at it's most critical time?


Keep something in mind, Cosair - the system is DESIGNED to survive lousy Presidents. It HAS survived bigots, demagogues, war hawks, and science deniers.

It will not survive declaring that a guy who won the election doesn't get to take office because the people who supported the loser are unhappy.

It's honestly that simple. Reasonable people should be considering what they can do to limit and mitigate the impact of President Trump, and should have been thinking this way for weeks.
Image
User avatar
MJW
 
Posts: 5299
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:17 am
Location: Nebraska
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 236 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Corsair » Sat Dec 17, 2016 11:00 pm

Source: Donald Trump’s alleged threats against Hamilton Electors aren’t legal
If the Trump campaign is threatening political reprisals against Republican defectors, they're breaking the law

Donald Trump’s reported threats against Hamilton Electors who are hoping to take the White House away from the man who lost the popular vote may be illegal, according to lawyers familiar with the situation.

On Thursday, Salon asked an anonymous member of the Electoral College whether the threats of political reprisal that the Hamilton Electors have had reported to them from possible Republican defectors violated 18 U.S. Code 594:

“Whoever intimidates, threatens, coerces, or attempts to intimidate, threaten, or coerce, any other person for the purpose of interfering with the right of such other person to vote or to vote as he may choose, or of causing such other person to vote for, or not to vote for, any candidate for the office of President, Vice President, Presidential elector, Member of the Senate, Member of the House of Representatives, Delegate from the District of Columbia, or Resident Commissioner, at any election held solely or in part for the purpose of electing such candidate, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.”

The elector replied as follows:
“Anonymously, I believe the descriptions I have received from Republican Electors may very well fall under that description. However, I did not hear the pressure myself and I am not a lawyer.”

There are lawyers who have weighed in on the matter, however.

“What Donald Trump is not recognizing is that electors are people vested with a constitutional privilege to make a judgment and it is a crime to threaten someone with that privilege with penalties for making a judgment one way or the other,” said Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig during a conference call on Thursday.

“Those allegations, if proven, would constitute a crime, and if coordinated could constitute conspiracy,” said Jessica Marlies, a member of the Hamilton Defenders and an attorney with 16 years of experience in the executive branch of state government.

“In order for the electoral college votes to be considered certifiable and reliable it has to be taken without undue influence, including intimidation. I would call on Donald Trump and his campaign to immediately do a thorough transparent internal review to determine the truth of those allegations and to come forward publicly and immediately to let electors know that he and his campaign support their constitutional right to exercise independent judgment as electors, as the founding fathers contemplated.”
Image
User avatar
Corsair
 
Posts: 3996
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:25 am
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 243 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby HamBone » Sat Dec 17, 2016 11:44 pm

Calm down...he's gonna be the Pres.
HamBone
 
Posts: 1547
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:34 am
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 53 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby bucfanclw » Sun Dec 18, 2016 8:32 am

HamBone wrote:Calm down...he's gonna be the Pres.

Exactly. People need to understand that political threats and intimidation are only an outrage when Clinton did it.
User avatar
bucfanclw
 
Posts: 1970
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 4:09 pm
Has thanked: 11 times
Been thanked: 107 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby mdb1958 » Sun Dec 18, 2016 8:43 am

A leader who will deny climate science at it's most critical time?

This is top shelf one of the worst.

Nutbags that think they can change things like this - absolutely pitiful.
mdb1958
 
Posts: 5097
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 4:11 pm
Has thanked: 114 times
Been thanked: 53 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Corsair » Sun Dec 18, 2016 10:13 am

Do you even science, bro?
Image
User avatar
Corsair
 
Posts: 3996
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:25 am
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 243 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby The Outsider » Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:25 am

Corsair wrote:Do you even science, bro?


It's mdb, so I'm guessing the answer is no.
Image
User avatar
The Outsider
 
Posts: 1852
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:02 pm
Location: Gettin' all up in ya
Has thanked: 25 times
Been thanked: 149 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby deltbucs » Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:36 am

I remember in the primaries when "faithless electors" were called superdelegates.
Image
deltbucs
 
Posts: 2763
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 2:28 pm
Has thanked: 130 times
Been thanked: 208 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby PrimeMinister » Sun Dec 18, 2016 12:13 pm

deltbucs wrote:I remember in the primaries when "faithless electors" were called superdelegates.


Ha!!
PrimeMinister
 
Posts: 4582
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:34 am
Has thanked: 21 times
Been thanked: 132 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Ken Carson » Sun Dec 18, 2016 2:04 pm

deltbucs wrote:I remember in the primaries when "faithless electors" were called superdelegates.


/thread
Image
Ken Carson
 
Posts: 1861
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:33 pm
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 113 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Buc2 » Mon Dec 19, 2016 2:29 pm

No record of ‘faithless elector' Chris Suprun as a 9/11 first responder
Jason Whitely and Mark Smith , WFAA 11:15 AM. CST December 18, 2016

UPDATE: Responding on Reddit Friday, Chris Suprun said he worked as a firefighter in Dale City, Virginia on September 11, 2001. But there's no listing for Dale City on his publicly available and comprehensive LinkedIn résumé. Dale City's station records state none of its members were part of the initial response to the Pentagon on 9/11.

In September 2001, according to Suprun's LinkedIn résumé, he was employed by the Manassas Park, Virginia fire department. Suprun also does not list being a firefighter in Dale City, Virginia on a recent lengthy seven-page paper résumé, which WFAA obtained. Neither Suprun nor his public relations firms have responded to WFAA since this story was first published.


DALLAS -- The Republican elector who has gotten national attention for refusing to vote for Donald Trump at the Electoral College on Dec. 19 was apparently not a first responder on September 11, 2001 as he has stated for years and has a questionable career history, according to an investigation by WFAA.

Chris Suprun, 42, portrays himself as a heroic firefighter who was among the first on the scene after the third plane flew into the Pentagon on 9/11.

In a heavily-publicized editorial this month for the New York Times, Suprun stated that as a member of the Electoral College he will not cast his ballot for Trump because the president-elect “shows daily he is not qualified for the office.”

Suprun, a Dallas resident for more than a decade, even used his résumé to establish credibility in the Times piece, writing in the second paragraph: "Fifteen years ago, as a firefighter, I was part of the response to the Sept. 11 attacks against our nation."

He has founded a nonprofit called Never Forget and state records show he is a licensed paramedic -- but much of the rest of résumé, publicly available on LinkedIn, is questionable.

In addition, on at least two occasions over the last couple years at crowded Major League Baseball games, Suprun has been introduced as a 9/11 veteran before throwing out first pitches.

"He claimed to be a first responder with the Manassas Park [Virginia] Fire Department on September 11, 2001 and personally told us stories 'I was fighting fire that day at the Pentagon,’" said a first responder who knows Suprun and only agreed to speak about him if his identity was concealed.

"No, I was on a medic unit that day at the Pentagon and you make a phone call to Manassas Park and you find out that he wasn't even employed there until October 2001."

The City of Manassas Park confirmed to WFAA that it hired Suprun on October 10, 2001, one month after the 9/11 attacks.

The fire chief there added that his department never even responded to the Pentagon or any of the 9/11 sites.

"It's no different than stolen valor for the military; dressing up and saying 'Hey, I earned a Purple Heart' when you weren't even in combat.' There's a big difference between shopping at Old Navy and being a Navy SEAL," said the first responder who knows Suprun.

But Suprun's résumé raises even more questions.

It shows he was, at the time this story aired on WFAA, a paramedic with Air Methods air ambulance service. But Christina Brodsly, a spokeswoman for that company, said he is not an employee there.

Suprun also claims to currently be a paramedic with Freedom EMS in Dallas. But records from the Texas Department of State Health Services indicate there's no such company. A firm with that name used to exist in Houston, but it went out of business in 2008, according to DSHS.

Turns out, federal court records show Suprun has spent the last five years in bankruptcy while his résumé says he was working. He even collected unemployment during part of it, court records show. Suprun was just released from bankruptcy supervision this month.

He never responded to multiple emails from WFAA and calls to his telephone go to a recording which says his voicemail is full.

Two public relations firms he has hired – Megaphone Strategies and Fenton Communications – responded to our requests for an interview saying: “Suprun's schedule is jammed packed.”

His story raises a bigger question, though. How are presidential electors chosen? And more importantly, aren't they vetted? Unfortunately, not. They are selected in an almost informal process that each party undertakes at their state convention.

"Parties might want to ask for a little more background information, do a little bit of checking into people who would like to be members of the electoral college,” said Matthew Wilson, a political science professor at SMU.

He suggested that Suprun’s case might change things four years from now.

"I think in the future there will be a little more vetting and scrutiny given to prospective electors only because there's been so much discussion in this cycle of the possibility of faithless electors," continued Wilson.

If Suprun isn't working at the places on his résumé, whose uniform is he wearing at public appearances? Manassas Park, VA said it looks similar to theirs from 12 years ago but could not positively identify it.

Texas electors meet Monday in Austin. It's uncertain who will get Suprun's vote. But as Suprun questions Trump's credibility fellow first responders have doubts of their own about his.

Copyright 2016 WFAA
Image
Don't tread on me
User avatar
Buc2
 
Posts: 5562
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 2:16 pm
Location: America
Has thanked: 641 times
Been thanked: 181 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby DreadNaught » Mon Dec 19, 2016 2:59 pm

This was another hot air story, or is 'fake news' the better term? Only faithless elector on Republican side was that Chris Supran dude that turned out to be a fraud.

Meanwhile a faithless elector on the Dem side in Minnesota was dismissed (per state law) for not voting for Hillary. Another in Maine as well.

It's about to be official as Trump is sitting at 241 electoral votes.

You can track real time here
Image
User avatar
DreadNaught
 
Posts: 6557
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:18 am
Has thanked: 277 times
Been thanked: 276 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Mountaineer Buc » Mon Dec 19, 2016 3:13 pm

t_d is having a collective orgasm right now.

They look to be the only people surprised by all this.
Image
User avatar
Mountaineer Buc
 
Posts: 6155
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:15 pm
Has thanked: 64 times
Been thanked: 392 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby Swashy » Mon Dec 19, 2016 3:32 pm

Looks like the swamp is healthier than ever.
Swashy
 
Posts: 2095
Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2015 12:11 pm
Has thanked: 35 times
Been thanked: 62 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby bucfanclw » Mon Dec 19, 2016 3:41 pm

Mountaineer Buc wrote:t_d is having a collective orgasm right now.

They look to be the only people surprised by all this.

They're also sticking to this whole "landslide" description of the election which I find odd considering he didn't get as many EC votes as Obama did either time and most would agree those weren't exactly landslides. Hell, Bush Sr took 426 EC votes back in 88. THAT is a landslide.
User avatar
bucfanclw
 
Posts: 1970
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 4:09 pm
Has thanked: 11 times
Been thanked: 107 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby NYBF » Mon Dec 19, 2016 4:42 pm

bucfanclw wrote:
Mountaineer Buc wrote:t_d is having a collective orgasm right now.

They look to be the only people surprised by all this.

They're also sticking to this whole "landslide" description of the election which I find odd considering he didn't get as many EC votes as Obama did either time and most would agree those weren't exactly landslides. Hell, Bush Sr took 426 EC votes back in 88. THAT is a landslide.


I don't understand what they consider a landslide.

Image

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016 ... -vote.html
Image
User avatar
NYBF
 
Posts: 2349
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:46 am
Has thanked: 95 times
Been thanked: 228 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby HamBone » Mon Dec 19, 2016 5:11 pm

DreadNaught wrote:This was another hot air story, or is 'fake news' the better term? Only faithless elector on Republican side was that Chris Supran dude that turned out to be a fraud.

Meanwhile a faithless elector on the Dem side in Minnesota was dismissed (per state law) for not voting for Hillary. Another in Maine as well.

It's about to be official as Trump is sitting at 241 electoral votes.

You can track real time here


4 in Washington didn't vote for Hillary...musta been Russian.
HamBone
 
Posts: 1547
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:34 am
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 53 times

Re: Faithless Electors

Postby DreadNaught » Mon Dec 19, 2016 5:15 pm

Definitely not a landslide by any historical measure.

But it was convincing enough that the nonsense we've seen post election contesting the results is a tad absurd. This isn't some Bush-Gore scenario decided by a handful of electoral votes.

Anyway we are just a few minutes from it being official (once Texas reports) as Trump sits at 268 currently.

Hillary has 4 official 'faithless electors' in WA state, one in Minnesota was dismissed (per state law) and replaced, in addition to one or two in Maine. Ironic that Hillary had more faithless electors than Trump after all the effort from the media and celebrities these past few weeks. That commercial with Martin Sheen and others was the most desperate thing I've ever seen.
Image
User avatar
DreadNaught
 
Posts: 6557
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:18 am
Has thanked: 277 times
Been thanked: 276 times

Next

post

Return to Politics and Religion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest