Fred Thompson abandons the Constitution

2011/05/16
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Thompson becomes spokesman for NPV

In a shocking twist, ex-Senator Fred Thompson has joined the effort to abolish the Electoral College. He claims that the National Popular Vote movement is “totally consistent with our constitutional principles.”

I like Thompson. I voted for him in the 2008 presidential primaries. But his endorsement of NPV simply cannot be reconciled with the Constitution. It is a pity, because he has spent so much of his public life defending these important principles. It is puzzling that he has abandoned them now.

NPV is consistent with the Constitution?

The delegates to the Constitutional Convention explicitly rejected a nationwide popular vote for President. The small states would never have ratified the Constitution with such a system in place, for fear that they would be constantly outvoted by big states such as Virginia and New York. NPV implements the system that was rejected and pretends that it is somehow consistent with this constitutional history.

The Constitution requires approval from three-quarters (38) of the states before radical change can be made to constitutional processes. NPV is on track to change the method of electing a President with the approval of fewer than 20 states.

The Constitution implements a system that combines the best elements of federalism, republicanism, and democracy. The Founders understood from their study of history that a pure democracy “is one of the greatest of evils” that “soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself.” It is “very subject to caprice and the madness of popular rage.” NPV shuns the lessons of history—so important to the Founders—and replaces America’s federalist, republican, democratic presidential election process with a purely democratic one.

There is more: NPV will likely cause Equal Protection, legal and logistical problems that I have discussed at length elsewhere. But even these few examples should show that Thompson and others need to more thoroughly study the history of our Constitution and the Electoral College before casually claiming that NPV is consistent with America’s founding principles.

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11 Responses to Fred Thompson abandons the Constitution

  1. Amm on 2011/07/05 at 5:54 PM

    This clearly shows us how some persons getting power over the election. so we need to follow the Every small cities for presidential elections. By considering them the result may vary also.

  2. Rob on 2011/07/05 at 6:27 PM

    Pandemic to America is the notion of democracy. We've been talking about that since Roosevelt came into office. America is a republic, and the Electoral College is indicative of our Republic. Certainly, people in New York would be upset if they had to be ruled by those in Alabama, or vice versa, simply because each state has a different population and geography. Should the large cities control law in rural or suburban areas simply because their population densities are different? The democracy of the Popular Vote Movement is akin to Ancient Greece's City-States, along with a host of other things.

    In the end, a Republic is grounded, well-informed, and prevents the harsh threat of Mob Rule. I would like to close with this question. With a large population of the country racist in the 1960s, would the Civil Rights Movement ever have been popular enough to vote into law had mob rule been substituted for legitimate councils and procedure?

  3. Alex on 2011/07/05 at 7:53 PM

    I think it is perfectly fine to abolish the electoral college. With the popular vote being the TRUE representation of who exactly the nation favors, not having the numbers slightly skewed due to candidates having HUGE victories in certain states, or narrow losses in others.

  4. shanthiimurugesh on 2011/07/05 at 8:30 PM

    As America is a democracy country the Electoral college is very very important to keep up the rules and regulations. The elctoral college would be the indicative of the republic.

  5. selva on 2011/07/05 at 9:02 PM

    During election most of the persons getting some power. the electoral colleges must keep up the rule and be confidential. Perhaps the result vary.

  6. saleem on 2011/07/05 at 9:05 PM

    With the backing of noted ex-senate, Fred Thompson, NPV is the correct way to lead the Presidential electoral system of U.S in a democratic way.

  7. nisharshorif on 2011/07/05 at 9:07 PM

    As there is different population with different states, it's very difficult to rule one state by another. Since Electoral College is indicative in Republic, need to follow the small cities' presidential election.

  8. Undertaker on 2011/07/05 at 9:40 PM

    It is a good idea but i have doubt that it will make any sense on fake politics.I have hope on national popular vote and there is no doubt that any part of state and country peoples made equals.I appreciate it.Thank you….

  9. karan on 2011/07/05 at 11:01 PM

    I was looking for these types of articles which helps people to understand whats were going on after selecting a political leader, weather he /she working honestly or not .First up we must abolish this electoral college and publish a new system

  10. Sree on 2011/07/06 at 9:10 AM

    I totally agree with the fact that pure democracy is one of the greatest of evils, at least in this country. So I'm not at all surprised to see more and more eminent personalities like ex-Senator Fred Thompson joining NPV to make an effort to abolish the Electoral College.

  11. mickeywhite on 2011/10/01 at 4:55 AM

Why Save our States?

The genius of the United States of America: we are both United and States. The American system of states is Federalism. One part of it is the Electoral College, the state-by-state way we elect the President of the United States.

Some 'reformers' want to unravel our system of states. The Freedom Foundation’s Save Our States Project is dedicated to preserving these structures for the sake of liberty. Find out more and join us.