By JD Chang
Monday morning and parents, families, and children head back to work and school. Let us continue our vigil in supporting those affected in CT with our support and prayers.
Also on this Monday, Barack Obama will become the next president of the United States. Oh, you already knew that? Well, did you know that he won’t officially win until the Electoral College casts their ballots, which they did today. John Nichols from The Nation argues that it’s time to do away with the Electoral College.
I think that idea is going to gain more traction over the next few presidential cycles. Not only is the electoral college process outdated now, but it gives an unhealthy weight to “battleground” states like Ohio, Florida, Virginia. Having bellwethers is great in any predictive environment, but the electoral college voting process undermines the voice of people in influential states like CA, TX, NY and others. People don’t come out to vote in those states because their vote is “already locked in” as part of a blue or red state. But, what that does is also discourage people to come out and vote down-ballot and also importantly, local and community measures. When you vote each cycle, you’re not just voting for the president, you’re also voting for a lot of state and local propositions. If less people come out and vote because they’ve been told their vote “doesn’t count”, it undermines the democratic process.
In some Fiscal Cliff (TR-7) news, John Boehner (TR-9) has offered to not fight over the debt ceiling this year and also raise taxes on millionaires. This is actually a pretty big deal because it signals the first makings of any negotiations from either side. But, you’ll have ample opportunities to get your fill of “Days of Our Lives” from the Cable News Networks this week. So is Boehner or Obama Marlena Evans in that scenario?
The selection of Kerry would close a political circle with Obama. In 2004, it was White House hopeful Kerry who asked a largely unknown Illinois state senator to deliver the keynote address at the Democratic convention in Boston, handing the national stage to Obama. Kerry lost that election to President George W. Bush. Four years later, Obama was the White House hopeful who succeeded where Kerry had failed.
Senate colleagues in both parties say Kerry’s confirmation would be swift and near certain, another remarkable turnaround. Eight years ago, the GOP ridiculed Kerry as a wind-surfing flip-flopper as he tried and failed to unseat Bush.
Enjoy your Monday!