Saturday, July 22, 2023

Fake Elector Scheme (in 7 States) VS. Real Electors, Explained ...

Though there are accused "fake electors" in 7 states, I'm showing only the 16 from Michigan here, recently officially charged with felonies.  You will note that they're all rich white people - shocker! ;)

So I thought this fake elector scheme was actually huge deal, when I first heard about it a couple of years ago, the most horrific of Trump's crimes, but back then, few others seemed to think it was a big deal

I wondered if this was either because most people don't know how the electoral college works/don't understand how significant it is, or conversely, they erroneously believe their personal vote doesn't count and they have no control anyway.  

(It could also be because Teflon Don seems to wriggle out of every other legal woe that he should've been held accountable for, like so many rich and powerful people seem to do, and many just gave up hope?)

In fact, though I am one of the lucky ones who had at least some rough idea of how it worked, I learned even more and had some of my questions answered after reading the official government website (see below link) on how it's supposed to work. 

If you would like to know how the electoral college works and how REAL electors are legally chosen, you can read more HERE. 

It's a pretty comprehensive site, so I'll try my best to condense it here, as best I can, from my understanding.

So in a nutshell and oversimplified, of course - each state has a certain number of electoral votes based on census population.  

The electors are officially and legally chosen and certified by their political party in each state at some point before the general election day. 

Otherwise, believe it or not, the constitution gives very little instruction or guidance on the election selector process; thus, it's been left up to the states to create their own state electoral laws. 

As for which party is used for electoral votes, Republican or Democrat, this is chosen on the night of the general election, after all the votes are tabulated, based on which party's presidential candidate won the popular vote in each state. 

For example, my state of Kentucky has 8 electoral votes.  Before the general election, the Republican Party of Kentucky will choose 8 electors and certify them, as will the Democratic Party of Kentucky.

On the night of the general election, if Trump wins the popular vote, the Republican Party gets to deploy all 8 electors chosen and certified from their party; if Biden wins, all 8 electors will be their chosen and certified Democrats.

In other words, it's a "winner-takes-all" policy - if Biden wins the popular vote in that entire state, all electors will be Democrat, and vice versa for Trump and Republicans.

*EXCEPT* - in Maine and Nebraska, who instead look at the popular vote winner of each Congressional district, rather than the entire state, and allot the number of electors to each party accordingly. 

This sounds initially like a great idea at first, until you discover it has resulted in a "split-vote" among parties (and I'm not sure who the decider is for those two states).

Regardless, when you say your popular vote doesn't count anyway because of the electoral college, you are mistaken - your vote chooses which party gets to cast their electoral college votes for President in your state.

Regardless of state differences, the electors are nevertheless chosen based on our popular vote in each state, and the electors are officially certified through a legal document submitted to Congress, the "Certificate of Ascertainment' form, which is also justified by the popular vote result in each state. 

Historically, these electors have remained anonymous, known only to the official party within each state, to avoid persecution/tampering.  

The timeline goes like this: 

2nd Tuesday of November - based on popular vote, the wining party's electors are certified as representing not just their party now, but the entire state. 

December 11th - the electoral college delegates cast their votes for president.  This date has been chosen to hopefully  allow for recounts, etc.

January 6th - Congress counts the electoral college votes and the Vice President certifies the election. 

As for how these electors vote, the constitution does not outlie for us that they must vote for their party or for the popular vote; thus, again, each state has electoral laws regarding this. 

The Supreme Court officially decided long ago that the electors do not have free will, and in 2020, the SCOTUS decided that they could be held accountable for not voting as they had pledged; therefore, the party that chose them may place restrictions on them, i.e., demanding they sign a pledge to vote for their party's candidate, fines for not  voting as they pledged, etc., and this came into play in some states in 2016 (thus the appeal to the Supreme Court in 2020).

Now - I have seen Trump-Republicans at several different sites try to twist this fake elector scam every which way to make it sound legal or minimize the offenses - and I'm not sure if it's ignorance or intentionally misleading/lying -  but here is what was illegal and  why it is actually a HUGE felonious deal below. 

So what's the big deal/illegal?

In 7 states - Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Arizona, New Mexico, and Nevada - people presented themselves as official electors for their state's party -  who were not - and signed documents as such, trying to certify the election for Trump.

In other words, these people were NOT the official electoral delegates chosen and certified by the Republican Party for those states - they were fakes, chosen by Trump attorney, John Eastman, as well as other Trump campaign officials, including and Rudy Giuliani, all on behalf of Trump.

Fraud and forgery - end of.

There IS no legal or moral justification for any candidate/candidate's campaign for doing so - sorry, self-proposed "Christian" Trump Republicans.

Some of them have stated that they genuinely believe the election was rigged and that they didn't know signing those documents was illegal - but helllooo -  at the very least, they DID know that they weren't officially chosen and certified electors, come on, with that  excuse lol. 

Now, it would be super helpful if the Republican parties in each of these 7 states would be more publicly forthcoming about stating they were fake versus the REAL electors they chose - but of course they aren't ;)

But I guess we should be happy that at least some of them reported the fraud at all, right? 

Also, I think it's crazy that since the constitution does not lay out specifically the restrictions that can be placed on the selection of these electors - or the POTUS for that matter - i.e., you can commit a felony, actually be sitting in jail, and still hold that office?

I think that although our forefathers thought ahead on many things, this one, they didn't - erroneously believing that we would believe so much in democracy after gaining our independence from a prior monarchy that no one would ever come along to try to cheat it, and therein lies the problem.

Also, I think those of us who do have at least some understanding of how the electoral college works - regardless of political party -  have felt it should have been abolished - or at least revamped - a long time ago, as it has always been ripe for problems, and that is because the constitution says very little about the selection process and duties of chosen electors.  In fact, it was just a matter of time before someone exploited it.

Thus, overhaul, please? 

Wouldn't THAT be nice!

Except it will likely never happen because our political system has become so corrupt, unfortunately, and the only time people bitch about the electoral college and the process is when their candidate doesn't win lol ;)


PS - So my husband and I discussed how the electoral college could be overhauled.

My husband's idea was do away with the electoral college completely, which sounds great at first, but it's  just like doing away with Senators and US Reps - IMO, we would have even more claims of voter fraud, legitimate or not, tied up in courts for an eternity.

So perhaps we do need "refs" for this game - but there perhaps needs to be some restrictions on who qualifies for being chosen, like no crimes committed, white collar or otherwise, at the very least, etc.

So then his second idea was to do away with the electoral vote numbers varying for each state based on population and just have 2 electoral college delegates from each state -  one for Republicans, one for Democrats -  neither obligated to vote for their party, but instead based on popular vote, having to justify it.

So let's say Biden wins the popular vote in Pennsylvania - both delegates from each party would still have to vote for whichever candidate won the popular vote.

That's a great idea, but here's the problem with that - it's the same debate that our forefathers had, when developing Congress, and it actually tripped them up for months.

Because some people thought that it wasn't fair that states with bigger populations had a bigger say, especially when they didn't necessarily reflect their values, and thus, they felt that there should be just two congress members representing each entire state equally. 

Others felt that 2 representatives from each state wasn't enough to reflect the entire population, especially different regions within each state with different values and beliefs,  and that representatives based on population's views from congressional districts was more accurate.

Thus, the compromise was to do both, in two houses, for balance of power - a house with 2 senators from each state AND a house with US Representatives that would vary in number, based on population from congressional districts. 

So then I thought "What if we did the same in electoral college? Two 'houses.'"  

The first house would be like the senators, 2 delegates from each state, regardless of how populated the state is -  one Republican and one Democrat - but voting based on the popular vote winner regardless. 

 - AND - 

The second house would be like US Reps, still vary based on population, but now instead of the "winner takes all" and all "representatives" are from the party who's candidate won, do it like Maine and Nebraska -  based on congressional district, a rep from whichever party's candidate won their district.

In this way, the electoral votes of 2 electoral college "senators" per state would be "balanced" against the electoral votes for each congressional district "representatives" chosen by population - and if their votes and tallies DON'T match, then Houston, we have a problem - because all of their votes are supposed to reflect the popular vote, and we'd just need to figure out why these people perceived the popular vote differently than each other and justify it or receive legal consequence. 

Also, I know that the presidential candidates themselves - and Congress itself - is not supposed to know whom each state has chosen for their electors and I get why - but there must be something we can do?

Official IDs, facial recognition, and verification signatures of authenticity by the official party leaders from each state on their vote submissions?

I don't know, but it's clearly fraught with problems that we need to do something about. 

Lastly, I don't think SCOTUS judges should be appointed by the president - it's giving them too much power.  I think they should be voted upon, just like presidents are, as well as tighter restrictions on backgrounds and ethical behavior (as should presidential candidates, as I've already stated), and consequences for violating those requirements. 

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