Goodbye, Electoral College? That’s the upshot of a bill working its way through the State House this week.
The National Popular Vote bill was in the state Senate last night after being enacted by the House on Tuesday. If enacted by the upper house — which could happen as early as today — and signed by Gov. Deval Patrick, it would enter Massachusetts into a pact to bypass the Electoral College.
Five states have already passed the legislation to guarantee their electoral votes go to the winner of the overall national balloting if states possessing a total of 270 electoral votes enter into the compact.
As far as 1988 presidential candidate Michael Dukakis is concerned, it should have happened “150 years ago.”
“It’s undemocratic,” the former governor said of the Electoral College. “While the framers were great people, obviously they didn’t trust average voters. That’s why they did an indirect election.”
Illinois, New Jersey, Hawaii, Maryland and Washington have already adopted the legislation. Dukakis said New York could follow the Bay State.
Senate Minority Leader Richard Tisei opposes the measure.
“I know a lot of this goes back to the 2000 election when Bush beat Gore. People still haven’t gotten over that, but the point is the system was set up specifically to ensure smaller states and every region have a voice,” he said.