Knox County reps back popular vote to elect president

By Stephen Betts | May 17, 2019
Source: File photo

Augusta — State legislators from Knox County are strongly behind a bill that would award Maine's four electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes nationwide.

The state Senate voted 19-16 Tuesday, May 14, to approve LD 816, which would create an interstate compact to elect the U.S. president by a national popular vote. All of the electors from the states that adopt the compact would agree to award their electoral votes to whoever gets the most popular votes nationally.

The bill would, if approved by the House and signed by the governor, become effective when the number of states entering the compact have a minimum of 270 electoral votes -- the number needed to elect a president.

State Sen. David Miramant, D-Camden, voted for the bill. "The Electoral College is a leftover from a time when informing the electorate was more difficult. It also assumed that the general population wasn't smart enough to be able to decide. There were other problems that have been ignored, and this is our chance to correct them. All other elections are one person, one vote. When we tell everyone that their vote matters and yet a president is sworn in when they have minority of votes, it is time to fix the system. Aligning the Electoral College with the popular vote is that fix," Miramant said.

State Sen. Dana Dow, R-Waldoboro, voted against the bill. Dow has yet to respond to a request for comment on the legislation.

The House has yet to vote. But legislators who responded to a request for comment voiced support.

Rep. Vicki Doudera, D-Camden, said the bill is "based on the simple principle that the American people should pick who serves as the president of the U.S., and that the candidate with the most votes should win."

"The current mentality of 'winner take all' does not favor Maine. Right now, candidates have no reason to poll, advertise, organize or visit states that have no influence. Very few states matter, and we are not among them," Doudera said.

"For instance, take a look at what is happening with the current tariffs with China. Maine workers such as lobstermen are suffering and being ignored, while those in the swing states with lots of electoral votes are not," the Doudera said.

She also said the bill is constitutional. The bill preserves the Electoral College, but changes the method of awarding votes, she said.

Rep. Jeff Evangelos, an independent from Friendship, said he would support the bill. "I'm going to support this effort because I believe the person who receives the most votes should win; otherwise our democracy risks becoming a joke," Evangelos said.

Comments (18)
Posted by: RALPH WALLACE | May 21, 2019 13:50

How deliciously ironic that Capt. Cut & Paste Horvath even dare to comment on others' intelligence.

Posted by: Daniel G Benson | May 21, 2019 11:44

Ron, I bow down to your superiority and all your intellect to do this all day long:


You'll just have to come up with a more original line of attack all on your own.  Keep trying, though.  It's entertaining to watch a conservative try to be original.”  ~ Ronald Horvath, aka Captain Cut 'N Paste


John Murphy


You'll just have to come up with a more original line of attack all on your own.  Keep trying, though.  It's entertaining to watch a conservative try to be original.”  ~ Ronald Horvath, aka Captain Cut 'N Paste


John Murphy


You'll just have to come up with a more original line of attack all on your own.  Keep trying, though.  It's entertaining to watch a conservative try to be original.”  ~ Ronald Horvath, aka Captain Cut 'N Paste


John Murphy


Yes, for $3.73 a month you too can become a member of Village Soup and with just a few keystrokes you too will be able to acquire the learned superiority and intellect of Ron. Don’t be fooled by same offer being cut and pasted by Ron.

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“I want to thank Dan for this superiority and intellect method! After just 2 weeks I am just as smart as Ron.”     -  I. Q.

“Dan, this is an amazing method. I started it the day that I got it and I can’t believe it works!”   -  B.S.

Dear B.S., Thank you for the kind words but it was REALLY NOTHING!

Posted by: William Leonard | May 21, 2019 11:17

You are correct, Mr. Horvath, that education is not necessarily a measure of intelligence.  I only mentioned it in response to your weak attempts to win your argument by labeling your opponents as “poorly educated” “throwbacks”.  Spin it anyway you wish, but I did not vote for Donald Trump. I voted for a legitimate independent candidate rather than the ethically flawed Democrat or Republican candidate.

Let’s assume that the electoral college had been abolished prior to 2016.  Hillary Clinton would have been elected by popular vote.  We know for a fact that Clinton stole the Democratic nomination from Bernie Sanders.  We know that as Secretary of State she maintained a private email server, destroyed thousands of emails, and physically destroyed cell phones and other devices.  Are those the actions of an innocent person?  Why would I vote for her?  What frightens me is the failure of most journalists and the legislative branch to spend the same amount of time and money investigating the Clintons as they have spent on Donald Trump.

Feel free to attack me with baseless innuendo, but I am done with this exercise in futility.  Long live the constitution and the electoral college!

Posted by: Ronald Horvath | May 21, 2019 06:19

My comment on intelligence stands firm, Daniel, since you obviously can't tell the difference between satire and actual science.   Not surprising.



"The Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias wherein unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly assessing their ability to be much higher than is accurate. This bias is attributed to a metacognitive inability of the unskilled to recognize their ineptitude."


If you’re incompetent, you can’t know you’re incompetent. […] the skills you need to produce a right answer are exactly the skills you need to recognize what a right answer is."
—David Dunning


Also known now as the "trump" syndrome.

Posted by: Daniel G Benson | May 20, 2019 23:25

Unlike me, I see that Ron places a great deal of veracity into Psychology studies; so obviously, I thought of him when I recently read the following article. So; without delay and in the spirit of the scissors and Elmer’s Glue method of Ron I give you:


The Liberal Mind

'Psychological Causes of Political Madness'

Lyle H. Rossiter Jr., M.D.



WASHINGTON – In an era when the Democratic Party is rapidly lurching leftward, an acclaimed psychiatrist has made the case that the ideology motivating them is actually a mental disorder.

“Based on strikingly irrational beliefs and emotions, modern liberals relentlessly undermine the most important principles on which our freedoms were founded,” says Dr. Lyle Rossiter, author of the acclaimed book, “The Liberal Mind: The Psychological Causes of Political Madness.” “Like spoiled, angry children, they rebel against the normal responsibilities of adulthood and demand that a parental government meet their needs from cradle to grave.”

While political activists on the other side of the spectrum have made similar observations, Rossiter boasts professional credentials and a life virtually free of activism and links to “the vast right-wing conspiracy.”

For decades he has diagnosed and treated more than 1,500 patients as a board-certified clinical psychiatrist and examined more than 2,700 civil and criminal cases as a board-certified forensic psychiatrist. He received his medical and psychiatric training at the University of Chicago.

Rossiter says today’s liberalism, as displayed by the likes of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton throughout the previous administration, as well as by today’s Democratic Party leaders, can only be understood as a psychological disorder.

“A social scientist who understands human nature will not dismiss the vital roles of free choice, voluntary cooperation and moral integrity – as liberals do,” he says. “A political leader who understands human nature will not ignore individual differences in talent, drive, personal appeal and work ethic, and then try to impose economic and social equality on the population – as liberals do.

And a legislator who understands human nature will not create an environment of rules which over-regulates and over-taxes the nation’s citizens, corrupts their character and reduces them to wards of the state – as liberals do.”

Dr. Rossiter says the liberal agenda preys on weakness and feelings of inferiority in the population by:

  • creating and reinforcing perceptions of victimization;
  • satisfying infantile claims to entitlement, indulgence and compensation;
  • augmenting primitive feelings of envy;
  • rejecting the sovereignty of the individual, subordinating him to the will of the government.

“The roots of liberalism – and its associated madness – can be clearly identified by understanding how children develop from infancy to adulthood and how distorted development produces the irrational beliefs of the liberal mind,” he says. “When the modern liberal mind whines about imaginary victims, rages against imaginary villains and seeks above all else to run the lives of persons competent to run their own lives, the neurosis of the liberal mind becomes painfully obvious.”



Posted by: Ronald Horvath | May 20, 2019 18:07

“...  a study published in the journal "Psychological Science" showed that children who score low on intelligence tests gravitate toward socially conservative political views in adulthood--perhaps because conservative ideologies stress "structure and order" that make it easier to understand a complicated world.


And now there's the new study linking conservative ideologies to "low-effort" thinking.


"People endorse conservative ideology more when they have to give a first or fast response," the study's lead author, University of Arkansas psychologist Dr. Scott Eidelman, said in a written statement released by the university.


Does the finding suggest that conservatives are lazy thinkers?

"Not quite," Dr. Eidelman told The Huffington Post in an email. "Our research shows that low-effort thought promotes political conservatism, not that political conservatives use low-effort thinking.



"For the study, a team of psychologists led by Dr. Eidelman asked people about their political viewpoints in a bar and in a laboratory setting.


Bar patrons were asked about social issues before blowing into a Breathalyzer. As it turned out, the political viewpoints of patrons with high blood alcohol levels were more likely to be conservative than were those of patrons whose blood alcohol levels were low.


But it wasn't just the alcohol talking, according to the statement. When the researchers conducted similar interviews in the lab, they found that people who were asked to evaluate political ideas quickly or while distracted were more likely to express conservative viewpoints.


"Keeping people from thinking too much...or just asking them to deliberate or consider information in a cursory manner can impact people's political attitudes, and in a way that consistently promotes political conservatism," Dr. Eidelman said in the email.”


The study was published online in the journal "Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin."


I suppose this is why conservatives hate "science."


Posted by: Gayle Murphy | May 20, 2019 10:01

“You'll just have to come up with a more original line of attack all on your own.  Keep trying, though.  It's entertaining to watch a conservative try to be original.”  ~ Ronald Horvath, aka Captain Cut 'N Paste


John Murphy

Posted by: Ronald Horvath | May 20, 2019 07:27

"The president’s form of deception is qualitatively different from the deviousness of Richard M. Nixon or the smoothness of Bill Clinton. Trump pursues no deep or subtle strategies. He does not even consistently seek his own interests. He responds like a child or a narcissist — but I repeat myself — to positive or negative stimulation. It is the reason a discussion on “Fox & Friends” can so often set the agenda of the president. It is the reason that Trump’s lawyers, in the end, can’t allow him to be interviewed by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III. It would be like a 9-year-old defending a PhD dissertation. Or maybe a rabbit jumping into a buzz saw.

This lesson can’t be lost on foreign intelligence services, which can pre-order a comprehensive account of the president’s psychological and political vulnerabilities for $18 online. (Note: Woodward now owes me.) Here is the increasingly evident reality of the Trump era: We are a superpower run by a simpleton. From a foreign policy perspective, this is far worse than being run by a skilled liar. It is an invitation to manipulation and contempt."



"Every time we gain a peek into the inner workings of Trump world, we see a leader with the ethics of an Atlantic City casino owner who surrounds himself with people chosen for their willingness to lie and cheat at his bidding. A world in which Paul Manafort is “a very good person.” A world in which payoffs and election tampering are all in a day’s work.
-By Michael Gerson

Posted by: Ronald Horvath | May 20, 2019 06:50

Education is no proof of intelligence, Mr. Leonard.  By reneging on your civic duty you merely passed your vote on to someone else to make for you.  In other word you voted for trump whether you know it, or acknowledge it, or not.

Posted by: Daniel G Benson | May 20, 2019 02:17

All individuals suggesting that the man behind the abomination of Obama nation never lied must have enough snow where they live to build a ten-foot snowman! It is no secret that every president has lied and that every future president will lie. Why? Because they are human. Does anyone believe otherwise?

“History is a set of lies agreed upon.”

― Napoleon Bonaparte

And, Obama did his part and agreed upon hundreds of them!

Ron, there is no “attack”. Don’t give me credit for your narrative; and you are correct in saying that it is getting old and repetitive.

I loved it when all the hypocritical individuals said if, “Trump got elected” they were going to move to Canada. Yet, they stay here in the United States with their loaves of Wonder bread and sop up all the gravy!

Tariffs are a necessary evil. There is no such thing as free trade. For many years the United States have dealt with this issue by not dealing with it. We need to help China balance their checkbook. Will it hurt our pocketbook? Maybe a little if you buy goods from China, but it will even out. If you buy American or goods from somewhere else, you will not pay any tariff imposed by China.

America needs to levy large tariffs to prevent and protect its advanced industries from moving across the pond. It will help us keep our technological edge and create an incentive for foreign technological firms to invest in America, further focusing innovative industry in our nation.

Economic growth depends upon events that are highly unlikely with highly significant inventions (earth shattering inventions that would change the world) they would shift the economic standard.

Even though we cannot guarantee that America will invent “the next world-shattering invention”, we can maximize our odds by imposing tariffs.

Do your part; “buy American, buy local and don’t shop online for your Christmas presents”!

Posted by: William Leonard | May 19, 2019 10:59

The original intent of the electoral college was to provide a compromise between popular election of the president and selection by congress.  It is imperative that we keep the electoral college to maintain a compromise between popular election of the president and selection by the progressive herd mentality of the voters in a few mega cities. (Before you profile me with your pejorative labels, Mr. Horvath, I am a relatively well educated Democrat who chose not to vote for either major party candidate in 2016.)

Posted by: Ronald Horvath | May 19, 2019 07:29

Sorry, Daniel, but that clever narrative has been used too many times before to be effective.  You'll just have to come up with a more original line of attack all on your own.  Keep trying, though.  It's entertaining to watch a conservative try to be original.

And if your "deplorables" had any common sense they wouldn't be so beguiled by a malignant narcissist who lies with every word out of his mouth.  It only makes them the patsies of history.

"The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the dedicated communist, but people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists."
-- Hannah Arendt, “The Origins of Totalitarianism”

It figures, too, that those who fall for trump's lies are those most in need of change and most likely to be hurt by trump's incompetence.  His tariff war will be paid for by the people least likely to be able to afford it.

To put it simply:

We have a delusional, unhinged madman in the Oval Office, and anything is possible,” David Stockman, the former director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under President Ronald Reagan, told Yahoo Finance’s The Ticker.

“He’s conducting four wars on the American economy, and it’s not going to make it great again.”

Stockman, who just published Peak Trump: The Undrainable Swamp And The Fantasy Of MAGA, argued that Trump is waging a trade war, a border war, a political war against the Fed, and a war on the nation’s solvency."

When it comes down to it an election won on lies can't be sustained on lies because reality will win out in the end.  Your poorly educated will suffer the most because they are the most beguiled.  Unfortunately the country will suffer along with them.

Posted by: Daniel G Benson | May 19, 2019 03:52

Ron, millions of Americans in the more populated, prosperous, and progressive areas allowed their future, their "life, liberty," and "pursuit of happiness" to be determined and lead by the best, and most forward thinking people; some of them live in a state with the motto, “Virtus libertas est, et independentiae” (Virtue, Liberty and Independence). Those forward-thinking people of Pennsylvania decided it was time for a change!

Oh, wait a minute! Ron; why are you a little bitter and disheartened? Is your hometown in Pennsylvania? Are you unhappy your state voted by more that 40,000 votes for President Trump? I want to thank those poorly educated throwbacks from Pennsylvania and Maine; at least deplorables have common sense!

“never can true reconcilement grow where wounds of deadly hate have pierced so deep.”

― Thomas Paine, Common Sense

Posted by: Ronald Horvath | May 18, 2019 07:19

On the other hand, Daniel, why should millions of Americans in the more populated, prosperous, and progressive areas allow their future, their "life, liberty," and "pursuit of happiness" be determined by a handful of bitter, isolated people in the so-called "heartland?"  A society should be lead by it's best, it's most forward thinking people, not by the throwbacks, and certainly not by trump's "poorly educated."


And let's not forget that the electoral college wasn't created to even out the vote.  It was created to prevent the rise of unsuitable candidates that could beguile the public with false promises and populist nonsense.  In the words of Alexander Hamilton in Federalist Paper Number 68:


"The Electors were supposed to stop a candidate with “Talents for low intrigue, and the little arts of popularity” from becoming President. The Electors were supposed to be “men most capable of analyzing the qualities adapted to the station, and acting under circumstances favorable to deliberation, and to a judicious combination of all the reasons and inducements which were proper to govern their choice.”


They were to “possess the information and discernment requisite to such complicated investigations” as the selection of the President, and they were supposed to “afford as little opportunity as possible to tumult and disorder.” They were even supposed to prevent “the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils.”

Hamilton was talking about demagogues. The word “demagogue” appears in both the first and last Federalist Papers; in Federalist Paper Number 1, for instance, Hamilton worried about the “military despotism of a victorious demagogue.


And as it turns out, he was right.



Posted by: Daniel G Benson | May 18, 2019 00:38

You’ve lost a game and now you want to take your ball and go home; but first you decide to urinate in the sandbox before you leave!

Hating on the Electoral College is becoming popular by the minute. It reminds me of a song sung by Lesley Gore; “It’s My Party”, (and I’ll cry if I want to). And, they are. A political party got doused with a dose of political reality and now they want to change the rules. The Electoral College seemed to work just fine in 2008 & 2012.

I want someone to represent me that was elected by a diverse group of individuals from all walks of life and areas, not just from the most populated states and cities. I do not want just California and New York deciding who should represent me here in Maine. Without the Electoral College the concerns of the low densely populated states would go by the wayside and we would be at the mercy of California, and New York. Would a presidential candidate even think of campaigning in the 42nd most populated state of Maine? Not even if Angus King ran for president!

Posted by: Ian Emmott | May 17, 2019 12:38

Great point Alan. And when this is challenged (if Trump is re-elected for 2020) it goes to a conservative court and will be struck down along party lines against this compact. The most vocal on the left will applaud these reps... however its the moderate votes they will lose for being remembered as a sell out to larger states, and for the lack of political courage to call it or what it is; a compact to ensure something like 2016 does not happen again.

Posted by: Dave Aho | May 17, 2019 12:07

Couldn't agree more, Alan. Especially with regard to your final sentence.

Naomi Aho

Posted by: Alan Benner | May 17, 2019 09:46

Under this proposed system Maine could overwhelmingly vote for one candidate and all the electoral votes go to the candidate of the other party. How would this proposed change give meaning to our individual votes in this state? As former Gov. James Longley would say, THINK ABOUT IT.     I believe this plan is not well thought out.     Speaking in general, and not to any particular individual, I often believe such new ideas come from people educated beyond their intelligence.

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