Nevada Joins Popular Vote Movement with Bill to Nix Electoral College

LAS VEGAS, NV - NOVEMBER 06: Election worker Leah Barney (R) watches over voters as they cast their ballots on November 6, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Turnout is expected to be high nationwide as Democrats hope to take back control of at least one chamber of Congress. (Photo by …
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WARNER TODD HUSTON

The state of Nevada is the latest to join the movement to nullify the Electoral College by awarding its votes to the winner of the popular vote.

Nevada became the 16th state to join the National Popular Vote movement on Tuesday with Assembly Bill 186, which passed the Senate on a 12-8 vote, the Washington Time reported.

Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak has signaled he will sign the bill that will essentially eliminate the state’s deliberations in the Electoral College.

Even if Gov. Sisolak signs the bill, the popular vote scheme would not be put into effect immediately. The movement will need more states to sign onto the plan and will not go into effect until enough states join to equal 270 Electoral College votes. With the addition of Nevada, thus far the movement has gained only 195 electoral votes.

The scheme would also likely have to survive a Supreme Court challenge before being put into play.

Not every lawmaker in Nevada approved. Nevada Assemblyman Jim Wheeler, a Republican, said the whole plan runs contrary to the American tradition. “If we go to a national popular vote, why would they even bother coming here? Our constitution says we’re a republic, not a democracy,” Wheeler said. “I voted ‘no’ on the national popular vote because I don’t want Nevada to be a flyover state.”

Along with Nevada, the states signed on with the scheme include, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and Washington, DC.

Most of the states that have joined the coalition went heavily for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election and are states filled with people bitter that Donald Trump won the Electoral College vote but not the popular election.

But winning the White House despite losing the popular vote is hardly unheard of. Five presidents have done so: John Quincy Adams (1824), Rutherford B. Hayes (1876), Benjamin Harrison (1888), George W. Bush (2000), and Donald Trump (2016).

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

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