I occasionally read the Daily Kos to keep up to date on what is percolating in the liberal blogosphere. And, it seems they just cannot get over the fact that Donald Trump won. After Donald Trump’s victory Democrats and their base have looked for anything to blame for their defeat. The blame has gone from Bernie Sanders to Clinton’s campaign to the party’s political ineptitude to settling on blaming the Electoral College. How else could Clinton win the popular vote by 2.85 million votes and still lose? Thus, they seem to have settled on blaming the Electoral College and how it needs to be abolished.
A note on the Electoral College before I move on. The Electoral College is designed to operate in our federalist system and create 51 separate elections for our only truly national office. It is true it does benefit small states over big states but that is by design to avoid Presidents being elected due to regionalism (as has happened in the past). While it does have its flaws (making the popular vote a sidenote) its benefits vastly outweigh its cons.
The left sees these benefits as irrelevant. Most commonly, they push back on the idea that bigger states should not have more sway in the EC. For example, NY state and California should get more votes (of course by that logic so should red Texas and Florida).
Enter the power of wishful thinking. Not only does the GOP have a big red state like Texas they also have the massive cultural region of Appalachia. This region churns out massive margins for the party and spans several states. This gives the party a reliable base of rural voters in many states.
That is all true. But a recent post by Daily Kos supposes that Trump would have struggled if Appalachia was a single state. It would have 26 Electoral Votes which is far less than it helped Trump win on Election Day. If Appalachia had been a single state Clinton would have won the rest of North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Georgia. Additionally, she would have lost the election by only 22 EC votes, 280-258.
That’s great and all but cultural connections are not what state lines are drawn on. There are so many factors that determined our state lines over 200 years that inferring culture in the modern day is the reason they are what they are today is ridiculous.
If we want to go that route than imaginary “Appalachia” should extend into Northern Florida and run all the way into Mississippi and Louisiana. These voters share the same culture of West Virginians, Pennsylvanians and South Carolinians in the the “state.” Meanwhile, we should probably split SoCal from NoCal, rural Nevada from Vegas and Eastern Colorado from Denver. See, I can play creating a map based on cultural connections.
The point here is that the argument the GOP has a massive “cultural” state benefiting it in the EC is only found in liberal fantasies. Modern state lines have been around for decades (the states have long settled their lines). Picking this one election to argue a “cultural” state gave the GOP its edge seems more like sour grapes.
Admittedly, the blogger is partly just playing around with numbers and data. But, it points out how the Left just cannot get over Trump won the election. The EC is just a convenient scapegoat. Nevermind, Democrats saw no problem with Clinton dominating the “cultural” state and mega state of California in the past.