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Author Topic: Major campaign underway to nullify Electoral College  (Read 88627 times)
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« Reply #225 on: October 10, 2010, 12:19:40 pm »
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The SC should declare it unconstitutional, but historically they have avoided "political" issues, so they may refuse to take a case.  Then again there is Gore v Bush as precedent for intervention, so perhaps they would take the case.
I expect that if they did they do take the case they would strike it down.

The plain language of the constitution would seem to invalidate this compact, (unless Congress approves it):

Article 1 section 8:
"No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, lay any duty of Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State,"

As was lengthily debated already in this thread, the only portion of the NPVIC that makes it Constitutionally suspect are the limitations on State withdrawal once it goes into force.  Otherwise it is just a bunch of identically worded State laws on how to choose Electors.  The specific circumstances that would make that provision applicable are extremely unlikely to happen.  You'd have to have 270 or more EVs signed up to this on the 20 July before the election and then have some State try to withdraw between 20 July and Election Day and reduce the number of EVs pledged to use this method to go below 270.

I agree that absent Congressional assent, the Supreme Court should strike down the anti-withdrawal provisio, but the severability proviso would keep the rest of it intact and operative if more than 270 EVs are agreeing to use that method on Election Day.
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« Reply #226 on: October 10, 2010, 03:42:03 pm »
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I read an interesting article awhile back about why this would never last. Basically, as soon as, say, Massachusetts' votes went to Sarah Palin even though Obama won the state, the whole thing will unravel quickly. Very few people support this on principle, most just do because of bitterness over 2000.
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« Reply #227 on: October 11, 2010, 09:53:50 am »
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Very few people support this on principle, most just do because of bitterness over 2000.

Very few people support the popular vote determining who wins the election? I doubt that. Now granted, this is just a way to achieve that goal.....but the principle behind the idea is the same.
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« Reply #228 on: October 11, 2010, 12:06:19 pm »
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Very few people support this on principle, most just do because of bitterness over 2000.

Very few people support the popular vote determining who wins the election? I doubt that. Now granted, this is just a way to achieve that goal.....but the principle behind the idea is the same.

But again, some latte liberal in Massachusetts will support this until his state's electoral votes go to Sarah Palin.
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« Reply #229 on: October 11, 2010, 03:16:25 pm »
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Very few people support this on principle, most just do because of bitterness over 2000.

Very few people support the popular vote determining who wins the election? I doubt that. Now granted, this is just a way to achieve that goal.....but the principle behind the idea is the same.

But again, some latte liberal in Massachusetts will support this until his state's electoral votes go to Sarah Palin.

The electoral votes are irrelevant under this system....they don't count for anything.
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« Reply #230 on: October 11, 2010, 03:22:12 pm »
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Very few people support this on principle, most just do because of bitterness over 2000.

Very few people support the popular vote determining who wins the election? I doubt that. Now granted, this is just a way to achieve that goal.....but the principle behind the idea is the same.

But again, some latte liberal in Massachusetts will support this until his state's electoral votes go to Sarah Palin.

The electoral votes are irrelevant under this system....they don't count for anything.

Actually they do count, they are just assigned differently than in the current system. Assume the compact is in force and take the given example of Palin over Obama. Under the compact MA would seat a slate of Palin electors to vote in the EC. The compact guarantees that if no electors are faithless, then the candidate with the highest popular vote total would command a majority of electors. The slates of electors remain a real part of this system, that's how it survives a constitutional challenge.
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« Reply #231 on: October 11, 2010, 05:58:02 pm »
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Very few people support this on principle, most just do because of bitterness over 2000.

Very few people support the popular vote determining who wins the election? I doubt that. Now granted, this is just a way to achieve that goal.....but the principle behind the idea is the same.

But again, some latte liberal in Massachusetts will support this until his state's electoral votes go to Sarah Palin.

The electoral votes are irrelevant under this system....they don't count for anything.

Actually they do count, they are just assigned differently than in the current system. Assume the compact is in force and take the given example of Palin over Obama. Under the compact MA would seat a slate of Palin electors to vote in the EC. The compact guarantees that if no electors are faithless, then the candidate with the highest popular vote total would command a majority of electors. The slates of electors remain a real part of this system, that's how it survives a constitutional challenge.

Well, sort of. The electors are truly and completely pointless regardless. The fact that they're still voting is immaterial as their result would not differ under any circumstances from the popular vote.
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« Reply #232 on: October 11, 2010, 06:10:33 pm »
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Very few people support this on principle, most just do because of bitterness over 2000.

Very few people support the popular vote determining who wins the election? I doubt that. Now granted, this is just a way to achieve that goal.....but the principle behind the idea is the same.

But again, some latte liberal in Massachusetts will support this until his state's electoral votes go to Sarah Palin.

The electoral votes are irrelevant under this system....they don't count for anything.

Actually they do count, they are just assigned differently than in the current system. Assume the compact is in force and take the given example of Palin over Obama. Under the compact MA would seat a slate of Palin electors to vote in the EC. The compact guarantees that if no electors are faithless, then the candidate with the highest popular vote total would command a majority of electors. The slates of electors remain a real part of this system, that's how it survives a constitutional challenge.

The electors, now and as they would be under the NPVIC, are like the Queen of England.

EDIT: To clarify, not many care (or even really know) about the electoral college today, and consistently polls have shown a supermajority of Americans supporting the adoption of a national popular vote system.  It's just like the Queen of England.
« Last Edit: October 11, 2010, 06:17:02 pm by beneficii »Logged
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« Reply #233 on: October 27, 2010, 05:50:16 am »
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Earlier in this thread it was claimed:
"As was lengthily debated already in this thread, the only portion of the NPVIC that makes it Constitutionally suspect are the limitations on State withdrawal once it goes into force. "

There is another Constitutional argument against the Compact. 
The 12th Amendment provides a Constitutional process if no single candidate gets a majority of EVs, such as could occur when three candidates split EVs.   This compact makes it impossible for the 12th Amendment to ever be used.  Thus the states in the Compact, through state laws, prevent all states (and citizens) from using a Constitutional process.   I do not think states can pass laws to get around Constitutional protections.

Although the 12th amendment has not been used since the early 1800's it just might affect the 2012 race.  If 2012 is a Palin-Obama contest, there are strong hints Bloomberg would run, and with his Billions to spend, might win enough states to prevent anyone from winning 270 EV, and hence the President would be determined via the 12th Amendment.
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« Reply #234 on: October 27, 2010, 08:20:00 am »
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There is another Constitutional argument against the Compact. 
The 12th Amendment provides a Constitutional process if no single candidate gets a majority of EVs, such as could occur when three candidates split EVs.   This compact makes it impossible for the 12th Amendment to ever be used.  Thus the states in the Compact, through state laws, prevent all states (and citizens) from using a Constitutional process.   I do not think states can pass laws to get around Constitutional protections.

That's a totally fallacious argument. If passed, the NPVIC would de facto nullify the 12th Amendment, but absolutely nothing in the NPVIC is explicitely contrary to the 12th Amendment. The 12th Amentment never states that there must be cases where its provision applies. Imagine the constitution says "any flying pig shall have its wings cut". If you interpret it the same way you interpret the 12th Amendment, it would imply "flying pigs shall exist".
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« Reply #235 on: October 30, 2010, 03:17:54 am »
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Earlier in this thread it was claimed:
"As was lengthily debated already in this thread, the only portion of the NPVIC that makes it Constitutionally suspect are the limitations on State withdrawal once it goes into force. "

There is another Constitutional argument against the Compact.  
The 12th Amendment provides a Constitutional process if no single candidate gets a majority of EVs, such as could occur when three candidates split EVs.   This compact makes it impossible for the 12th Amendment to ever be used.  Thus the states in the Compact, through state laws, prevent all states (and citizens) from using a Constitutional process.   I do not think states can pass laws to get around Constitutional protections.

Although the 12th amendment has not been used since the early 1800's it just might affect the 2012 race.  If 2012 is a Palin-Obama contest, there are strong hints Bloomberg would run, and with his Billions to spend, might win enough states to prevent anyone from winning 270 EV, and hence the President would be determined via the 12th Amendment.


But the 12th amendment is used (and whether it is used is irrelevant), and nothing in the 12th amendment overrides the state's plenary powers to determine the manner of selecting electors.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2010, 03:19:29 am by beneficii »Logged
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« Reply #236 on: October 30, 2010, 03:19:53 am »
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There is another Constitutional argument against the Compact. 
The 12th Amendment provides a Constitutional process if no single candidate gets a majority of EVs, such as could occur when three candidates split EVs.   This compact makes it impossible for the 12th Amendment to ever be used.  Thus the states in the Compact, through state laws, prevent all states (and citizens) from using a Constitutional process.   I do not think states can pass laws to get around Constitutional protections.

That's a totally fallacious argument. If passed, the NPVIC would de facto nullify the 12th Amendment, but absolutely nothing in the NPVIC is explicitely contrary to the 12th Amendment. The 12th Amentment never states that there must be cases where its provision applies. Imagine the constitution says "any flying pig shall have its wings cut". If you interpret it the same way you interpret the 12th Amendment, it would imply "flying pigs shall exist".

You answered this way better than I did.
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« Reply #237 on: October 30, 2010, 04:11:06 am »
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So this has now been passed in 6 states and DC.  What do you guys think of the prospects of this (eventually) actually being adopted by enough states to reach 270 EV?  Is there a decent chance that the 2020 or 2024 election might be decided by the national popular vote?
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« Reply #238 on: October 30, 2010, 12:58:28 pm »
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It'll probably pick up California and maybe New York but not much else in the 2011-12 cycle.  But after that, it won't pick up much more for now.  Rightly or wrongly, the NPVIC is perceived as favoring the Democratic Party right now.  I wouldn't be surprised that if the GOP retakes the White House in 2012 that repeal of DC's adoption of this was forced upon the District.
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« Reply #239 on: October 30, 2010, 02:16:08 pm »
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So this has now been passed in 6 states and DC.  What do you guys think of the prospects of this (eventually) actually being adopted by enough states to reach 270 EV?  Is there a decent chance that the 2020 or 2024 election might be decided by the national popular vote?


This won't have credibility until a McCain state adopts it, IMO. Right now, I can't see that happening in the near future.
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« Reply #240 on: October 30, 2010, 04:40:56 pm »
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We should be working towards IRV rather than this nonsense..
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« Reply #241 on: October 30, 2010, 04:50:13 pm »
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We should be working towards IRV rather than this nonsense..

I don't think there's any clear way to do that with an interstate compact though.  It would have to be done via constitutional amendment, and that's pretty much impossible to pass.

Maybe if NPV passes though, then there might be less resistance from the states to change things further by going to NPV via a constitutional amendment.
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« Reply #242 on: October 30, 2010, 05:23:37 pm »
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It'll probably pick up California and maybe New York but not much else in the 2011-12 cycle.  But after that, it won't pick up much more for now.  Rightly or wrongly, the NPVIC is perceived as favoring the Democratic Party right now.

That is correct, but for the medium-term I think the chances are very good.  Polling has consistently shown that about 70% of Americans support, with consistent majorities in every state, since World War II.  Evidence also shows a lot of support from moderate Republicans and former politicians who are Republican (such as Bob Dole), such as statements and recorded votes (see the votes in the NY State Senate).

In my view, once the NPVIC crosses a certain threshold of EV's, such as 150-200, then with the increased national coverage and people caring about it, it should take off like a rocket and would be adopted, or lead to the adoption of a constitutional amendment modifying the presidential election process.

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I wouldn't be surprised that if the GOP retakes the White House in 2012 that repeal of DC's adoption of this was forced upon the District.

I think any such attempt would be filibustered.
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« Reply #243 on: October 30, 2010, 11:21:06 pm »
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In my view, once the NPVIC crosses a certain threshold of EV's, such as 150-200, then with the increased national coverage and people caring about it, it should take off like a rocket and would be adopted, or lead to the adoption of a constitutional amendment modifying the presidential election process.

I could definitely see it getting a huge burst of publicity once we reach the point at which it only takes one or two more states to reach 270.  But that might not happen for some time.  And I'm not exactly sure how this issue will play politically once it reaches that stage.  A national popular vote might be popular in the abstract right now, but once such a radical change in the electoral system comes close to reality, the people who benefit from the current system will come up with all sorts of creative reasons for why this has to be stopped.
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« Reply #244 on: October 30, 2010, 11:32:30 pm »
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In my view, once the NPVIC crosses a certain threshold of EV's, such as 150-200, then with the increased national coverage and people caring about it, it should take off like a rocket and would be adopted, or lead to the adoption of a constitutional amendment modifying the presidential election process.

I could definitely see it getting a huge burst of publicity once we reach the point at which it only takes one or two more states to reach 270.  But that might not happen for some time.  And I'm not exactly sure how this issue will play politically once it reaches that stage.  A national popular vote might be popular in the abstract right now, but once such a radical change in the electoral system comes close to reality, the people who benefit from the current system will come up with all sorts of creative reasons for why this has to be stopped.


Agreed.  This being at the 150-200 EV stage will mean that this will remain a wonkish issue that only political insiders care about, and they will largely vote in their party's self-interest rather the public perception.  Plus, until we have another election where the PV and EV results diverge, this won't be on the public radar.  At most, the NPVIC has done the groundwork for something to be quickly done the next time the PV winner does not win the EV.  Given how infrequently that has occurred, it may well not be until the 22nd century that it happens (in which case the NPVIC may well have been completely forgotten by then).
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Spearman(R) Supt. of Education
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« Reply #245 on: October 30, 2010, 11:52:20 pm »
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I wouldn't be surprised that if the GOP retakes the White House in 2012 that repeal of DC's adoption of this was forced upon the District.

I think any such attempt would be filibustered.

That assumes the Democrats have 41 Senators in the 113th Congress.  If the 2012 election is as bad for the Democrats as the 2010 election is shaping up to be, it is quite conceivable that the GOP will have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate by then, even if they don't retake control of the Senate in this election.  In a perfect election year for the GOP there are by my count 14 currently Democratic seats (CA, FL, MI, MN, MO, MT, NE, NJ, ND, OH, PA, VA, WA, and WI) that are potential GOP gains in 2012, tho some of those would likely require the current incumbent to not seek reelection and have the race be for an open seat.
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My November ballot:
Ervin(I) Gov.
Sellers(D) Lt. Gov.
Hammond(R) Sec. of State
Diggs(D) Att. Gen.
Herbert(D) Comptroller Gen.
Spearman(R) Supt. of Education
DeFelice(American) Commissioner of Agriculture
Hutto(D) US Sen (full)
Scott(R) US Sen (special)
Geddings(Labor) US House SC-2
Quinn(R) SC House District 69
Yes: Amendment 1 (Gen. Assembly may allow and regulate charity raffles)
No: Amendment 2 (end election of the Adjutant General)
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« Reply #246 on: October 31, 2010, 12:05:12 am »
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I wouldn't be surprised that if the GOP retakes the White House in 2012 that repeal of DC's adoption of this was forced upon the District.

I think any such attempt would be filibustered.

That assumes the Democrats have 41 Senators in the 113th Congress.  If the 2012 election is as bad for the Democrats as the 2010 election is shaping up to be, it is quite conceivable that the GOP will have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate by then, even if they don't retake control of the Senate in this election.  In a perfect election year for the GOP there are by my count 14 currently Democratic seats (CA, FL, MI, MN, MO, MT, NE, NJ, ND, OH, PA, VA, WA, and WI) that are potential GOP gains in 2012, tho some of those would likely require the current incumbent to not seek reelection and have the race be for an open seat.

Even if the Republicans did get a filibuster-proof majority, I would not think all Republicans would be on board.  60 Republicans in the Senate = 5-10 Mike Castles in the Senate.
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« Reply #247 on: October 31, 2010, 12:16:22 am »
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In my view, once the NPVIC crosses a certain threshold of EV's, such as 150-200, then with the increased national coverage and people caring about it, it should take off like a rocket and would be adopted, or lead to the adoption of a constitutional amendment modifying the presidential election process.

I could definitely see it getting a huge burst of publicity once we reach the point at which it only takes one or two more states to reach 270.  But that might not happen for some time.  And I'm not exactly sure how this issue will play politically once it reaches that stage.  A national popular vote might be popular in the abstract right now, but once such a radical change in the electoral system comes close to reality, the people who benefit from the current system will come up with all sorts of creative reasons for why this has to be stopped.


Agreed.  This being at the 150-200 EV stage will mean that this will remain a wonkish issue that only political insiders care about, and they will largely vote in their party's self-interest rather the public perception.  Plus, until we have another election where the PV and EV results diverge, this won't be on the public radar.  At most, the NPVIC has done the groundwork for something to be quickly done the next time the PV winner does not win the EV.  Given how infrequently that has occurred, it may well not be until the 22nd century that it happens (in which case the NPVIC may well have been completely forgotten by then).

What about those people in California and Texas and New York who, despite their large populations, are practically ignored by presidential candidates in the general election?  It isn't just about elections where the EV winner happened to differ from the PV winner, but rather that the possibility exists in every election--that is why candidates focus on a few swing states and just about entirely ignore the rest.  (EDIT: Need I remind you that the national popular vote has had consistent majority support in polls?)

It's an injustice that the NPVIC supporters have been beating the drums about, and if the NPVIC gets to 150-200 EV, I think they can gain momentum on it.  In the eyes of the public, once they are actually aware that many of them have been getting ignored by presidential candidates they will want a change.  This already impacted the 2008 election, where the candidates promised to campaign across the country equally (though it turned out they lied and did the usual way anyway).

Not only that, it isn't just something Democrats support, as I've stated before, but there are many moderate Republicans who have supported it as well, as evidenced in the roll call votes of many states that have considered and passed it.  Essentially, this has been and is something that is supported by Democrats and moderate Republicans, which suggests in the long run it will win or will spur the adoption of a constitutional amendment relating to the matter.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2010, 12:32:32 am by beneficii »Logged
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« Reply #248 on: October 31, 2010, 10:47:38 am »
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Here's an article written by a tea partier on the issue:

http://www.nationalpopularvote.com/pages/blogs/charlsteaparty_20100823.php
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« Reply #249 on: October 31, 2010, 03:43:09 pm »
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Even if the Republicans did get a filibuster-proof majority, I would not think all Republicans would be on board.  60 Republicans in the Senate = 5-10 Mike Castles in the Senate.

Mike Castle won't be in the Senate, he didn't even win the primary.  And even if he were, I suspect while he might not vote for such a measure, that he wouldn't offend the GOP leadership by sustaining a filibuster.

Need I remind you that the national popular vote has had consistent majority support in polls?

No, but except for those States where it could get passed via the initiative process, that's largely irrelevant.  Support on this issue is broad but extremely shallow.  Very few voters will base their decision on who to vote for based upon a politician deciding to support or oppose the NPVIC.

Not only that, it isn't just something Democrats support, as I've stated before, but there are many moderate Republicans who have supported it as well, as evidenced in the roll call votes of many states that have considered and passed it.  Essentially, this has been and is something that is supported by Democrats and moderate Republicans, which suggests in the long run it will win or will spur the adoption of a constitutional amendment relating to the matter.

From what I've seen, what moderate Republican support that there has been on this has mainly been in Democratic States where passage sooner or later was inevitable, or where the other house of the assembly was certain to block it, so why make waves?  I admire your idealism, but I just don't think that without another election such as 2000 that the idealism behind the NPVIC will triumph over the cynicism of that comes with leading a major political party.  The fact that this has so far passed only in solidly Democratic States and is only likely to pass in such States only bolsters my view that at present, this is being voted by the politicians upon a purely partisan basis.
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My November ballot:
Ervin(I) Gov.
Sellers(D) Lt. Gov.
Hammond(R) Sec. of State
Diggs(D) Att. Gen.
Herbert(D) Comptroller Gen.
Spearman(R) Supt. of Education
DeFelice(American) Commissioner of Agriculture
Hutto(D) US Sen (full)
Scott(R) US Sen (special)
Geddings(Labor) US House SC-2
Quinn(R) SC House District 69
Yes: Amendment 1 (Gen. Assembly may allow and regulate charity raffles)
No: Amendment 2 (end election of the Adjutant General)
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