Every Vote Should Count, From Sea to Shining Sea

By Rob Richie
Published November 5th 2008 in New York Times

Re “How Much Is Your Vote Worth?,” by Sarah K. Cowan, Stephen Doyle and Drew Heffron (Op-Chart, Nov. 2):

If a Wyoming voter is three and a half times more influential than a Florida voter, why has Wyoming been utterly ignored by the major party campaigns and Florida voters wooed incessantly with multiple visits and tens of thousands of campaign ads?

The reality is that the current Electoral College system values votes based on whether they are cast in swing states.

In 2004, 99 percent of campaign spending went to just 16 states. This year, 17 states have drawn 99 percent of major party candidates’ visits to states for campaign events since the party conventions.

Fortunately, there’s every reason to believe that by 2012 enough states will have adopted the National Popular Vote plan to enact a system where every vote is equal by whatever measurement. It couldn’t come a moment too soon.

Rob Richie

Executive Director, FairVote

Takoma Park, Md., Nov. 3, 2008