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Letter of the Day: Shrunken battleground

  • Pages carry a box of the Electoral College votes to the House Chamber to be certified,Thursday, Jan. 8, 2009, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

<b>Shrunken battleground</b>

EDITOR: While we may not succeed in defusing the polarized political landscape, the American people need not become powerless bystanders. The fact that 93 percent of all presidential campaign advertising dollars will be spent in just nine states underscores what we have known for some time: The Electoral College is an outdated system that now fuels the very inequities it was designed to offset.

At our country's founding, there was legitimate concern that the newer, less accessible, less populated states would be ignored by candidates and underserved. Those concerns must now be replaced by the reality that the Electoral College undermines the fundamental democratic principle of one man, one vote.

The two candidates will spend roughly 80 percent of their time campaigning in those same nine states. Disenfranchising voters in such a large number of states has swung the pendulum the other way. Clearly we need to retire the Electoral College and adopt the popular vote model used by every other democratic country. The Electoral College has become as much of an anathema to the process of electing a commander-in-chief as the hanging chad.

JOHN BRODEY

Santa Rosa


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