The Georgia Legislature is considering overthrowing history and giving up our state's sovereignty. Over the years, four presidents were elected by the electoral college, having lost the popular vote. In 1824, John Quincy Adams lost both the popular and the electoral votes, yet won the presidency, because Andrew Jackson couldn't get a majority of electoral votes. The race was thrown into the House of Representatives, which picked Adams.
In 1876, Rutherford B. Hayes lost the popular vote but managed to squeak into office, winning by a single electoral vote. Otherwise we'd be answering trivia questions about President Samuel J. Tilden instead of President Hayes. Benjamin Harrison lost the popular vote by 100,000 but won the election by 65 electoral votes in a North versus South contest (the South voting Democrat as a bloc). If New York had gone Democrat (in those days it was a swing state), Grover Cleveland would have won another term. Only 14,373 votes separated the two in the Empire State.
It happened most recently in 2000, when Florida decided the race. Remember the slow parade of cars and helicopters from Fort Lauderdale to Tallahassee carrying the dreaded "hanging chads"? Remember that the Associated Press had the race called wrong, and the election had to go all the way to the Supreme Court or else we'd have had President Gore?
Now the Georgia Legislature is about to consider House Bill 929, which was passed to the full House with a recommendation to enact by the Interstate Cooperation Committee on Feb. 17. HB 929 is called "Agreement Among the States to Elect the President by National Popular Vote." I don't have to explain what that means because the title is self-explanatory.
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This bill, if passed, would surrender Georgia's state sovereignty to control its Electoral College votes and give it to an amalgamation of states who agree to vote in accordance with the national popular vote for president. In effect, your vote would no longer count, because someone in Florida or California could vote against you.
It would open the state to all kinds of issues -- say if the Associated Press got the vote counts wrong in Florida again, or there was a hanging chad issue, Georgia's vote would be hanging in the winds of change -- or simply awarded to the wrong candidate.
For Georgia to undo over 200 years of a process that works in favor of one rejected by our Founding Fathers is nothing short of foolhardy. If Georgia had this as law in 2000, we would have had President Gore, even though Florida went to Bush.
Besides changing the future of presidential elections, HB 929 would subvert the very fabric of our federal republic. If the Founding Fathers had wanted an all-powerful federal government with subservient states ruled from Washington D.C., they would have written the Constitution that way. They didn't.
Instead, they wrote the 10th Amendment, which very simply states: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."
Don't let Georgia nullify your vote and surrender those powers to Washington.
Steve Berman is a political blogger who writes at The Resurgent. He lives in Warner Robins.