America is no democracy. Maybe it never has been since the Electoral College has always meant that all votes are not created equal.

Individual voters in North Dakota have much more say in the election of presidents than voters in California as each person controls more Electoral College votes.

That said, most Americans like to think they live in a democracy. That is why the Electoral College needs to be abandoned or something like the National Popular Vote Initiative needs to be adopted by more states, including Maine. Once states with 270 Electoral College votes or more have approved the initiative, those states pledge to have their electors vote for the winner of the national popular vote. I believe states with over 180 Electoral College votes (13 states and D.C.) have already signed-on.

However, even then we will still not have a true democracy, and that is due to our theoretically, non-political Supreme Court. The Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision made it easier for those with the most money to have the most say.

So, the rich, including corporations, have more ability to influence the votes of average Americans. They are able to promote their voting desires through their power to control the media.

More recently, the Supreme Court has also said it is acceptable for politicians to pick their voters, rather than the other way around, through the use of extreme gerrymandering. The Supreme Court had a golden chance to promote equality in voting, and totally dropped the ball. This, when combined with the voter suppression exercised by Republicans, allows the minority to control state legislatures.

I find all this quite depressing. This is not the democracy we were taught in civics class

William Dunn


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