July 2019 – Updates from the Chair
Several states are making strong progress towards passing NPVIC legislation. We are optimistic that the states in this ‘second wave’ of NPVIC passage will serve to prod other legislatures to seriously consider the bill (including our own!) However, as we get closer to 270 electoral votes, the opposition is beginning to come out in force. See below regarding Colorado.
NPVIC Bills Enacted in Four States
The new tally for NPVIC bill passage across the country is very good. Four new states passed NPVIC bills–Delaware, Colorado, New Mexico and Oregon — for an additional 24 electoral votes. Two other states came very close, Nevada and Maine, but failed in the final moments. In Nevada, the governor vetoed the NPVIC bill after it had passed both chambers, reportedly due to last-minute lobbying from casino owners. They were concerned that passage would mean Nevada would no longer be a “swing” state and that revenue to their establishments from presidential entourages would be reduced. In Maine, NPVIC failed in the House where several Democratic legislators didn’t understand NPV. Leaders in both states report that more education of key influencers is needed, which they will address next year.
The National Popular Vote bill will take effect when enacted into law by states possessing 270 electoral votes (a majority of the 538 electoral votes). It has been enacted into law in 16 jurisdictions accounting for 196 electoral votes, including 5 small jurisdictions (DC, DE, HI, RI, VT), 8 medium-sized states (CO, CT, MD, MA, NJ, NM, OR, WA), and 3 big states (CA, IL, NY). All that is needed to activate the Compact is an additional 74 electoral votes.
On the map below, each square represents one electoral vote (out of 538).
The prospects for National Popular Vote bills passing in the future remain good. NPVIC bills have now passed a total of 40 state legislative chambers (including the 16 that have passed NPV) in 24 states. Legislation has also been passed by at least one chamber in 8 states possessing a total of 75 electoral votes (AR, AZ, ME, MI, MN, NC, NV, OK). Additionally, it has been unanimously approved at the committee level in 2 states possessing 27 more electoral votes (GA, MO). The National Popular Vote bill has been introduced in various years in all 50 states. Expect to see more action in 2020 as the Presidential election heats up.
As more states pass NPVIC bills, opposition to its passage has emerged. In Colorado, which has experienced the biggest backlash, opponents have been working to collect signatures to undo this year’s passage of the NPVIC bill. They have reportedly collected more than 125,000 signatures and hope to garner more by August 5 to ensure that they have the certified signatures needed to put the NPVIC recall bill on the ballot for 2020.
Hence, education of legislators, local leaders and influencers is critically important and explains the focus of NPV for the fall of 2019 and 2020. Making sure that the “recall” of NPV in Colorado is not successful will be a major objective for all those involved in NPV nationwide. Expect to hear more from us about this important initiative.
NPV Network Training
On June 21, the Institute for Research on the Electoral College held a one-day training program for NPV leaders from around the country. Kathleen Crampton and Eliza McClenaghan of Common Cause were invited to attend the workshop from Florida. Issues related to NPV, national strategies and grassroots organizing were discussed in depth. John Koza, Founder and President of National Popular Vote, Inc., (shown here with Kathleen Crampton), led the session with support from Eileen Reavey, Scott Drexel, and Pam Wilmot from Common Cause.
Meeting at the training program sponsored by NPV, Inc., Paula Lee (left), LWV Sacramento, who helped pass NPVIC in California, and Barbara Klein (right), LWV Oregon, who was instrumental in getting NPVIC passed in Oregon this past month, share best practices with Kathleen Crampton.
Constitution Days to Focus on National Popular Vote
The LWVFL National Popular Vote is partnering with several academic organizations to sponsor their Constitution Day celebrations. Held annually around September 18, each college or university receiving federal funds is required to sponsor an event that focuses on a topical issue related to the Constitution. The LWVFL is supporting these efforts by bringing in expert speakers on the National Popular Vote. A number of local Leagues are working to set up these forums, with three confirmed to date.
Key Largo Cultural Center, National Constitution Day
Tuesday, September 17 (exact time TBD)
Contacts: Linda Kaplan firstname.lastname@example.org
Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida
Wednesday, September 18, 3:00 pm
Speakers: Ana Navarro, Political Commentator for CNN, NBC, Patrick Rosensteil, NPV, Inc. Consultant, Ilenee Prusher, Political Commentator
The Tiger Bay Club, St. Petersburg, Florida
Thursday, September 19 from 11:30 am -1:30 pm
Speaker: Patrick Rosensteil, NPV, Inc.Consultant
“Lunch & Learn” on National Popular Vote for Florida Legislators
Bringing legislators up to speed on the facts related to the National Popular Vote has been an ongoing challenge. To address this issue, Representative Geller and Senator Torres are sponsoring a “lunch and learn” for their colleagues and have invited Dr. Vikram Amar, Dean of the Law School at the University of Illinois, to provide a non-partisan commentary on the strengths and weaknesses of the NPVIC bill. Details:
- Sponsors: Representative Joseph Geller and Senator Victor Torres
- When: Tuesday, November 12, 2019 noon – 2:00 pm
- Speaker: Dr. Vikram Amar, Dean of the Law School, University of Illinois
- Panelists: TBD
- Location: Florida Senate Office Building, Room 211
- Contacts: Joel Ramos, Rep Geller’s office; Al Yorsten, Senator Torres’s office
If you are interested in helping with these events please call the contact names listed. If you want to organize an event in your neighborhood, please contact, Marcia Herman, email@example.com, or Kathleen Crampton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are You a Writer or a Social Media Addict?
The National NPV Network is looking for individuals to join a Writers Bureau or Twitter Amplification Team. If you have any interest in working on NPV on a national level or would like to learn more about the Bureau or Twitter Amplification Team, please complete this brief sign-up form. This is a great opportunity for someone with good writing and social media skills to work with Jon Perloe (NPV Connecticut) who is a talented communicator.