Democrat Says Electoral College is ‘Racist,’ Wants it Abolished
Tennessee Rep. Steve Cohen joins Democratic calls, says it was 'conceived in sin'
Tennessee Democratic Rep. Steve Cohen has joined growing a growing number of Democrats calling for the Electoral College to be abolished, saying it is "racist" and was "conceived in sin."
Speaking on CNN Tuesday, the Dem lawmaker described the Electoral College as an outdated system that created to protect slavery.
“The country is different than it was when the Constitution was drafted,” Cohen told CNN.
“When the Constitution was drafted, a lot of it had to do with slavery.
“The slave states wanted equal representation in the Senate because they wanted to keep slavery,” he said.
“The slave states wanted to have an electoral college to where the members that they had in Congress counted towards the vote of president where the slaves counted as two-thirds — in a popular vote they would count as zero.
"So the slave states didn’t want a popular election because their slaves wouldn’t count towards voting and the slave states would have less votes.”
“This is all conceived in sin and perpetuating slavery on the American people and on the African-American people, directly,” he added.
Mr. Cohen’s comments came one day after 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren promised to “get rid of” the Electoral College during a CNN Town Hall in Mississippi.
“We need to make sure that every vote counts,” the senator said Monday.
Liberal sensation Beto O'Rourke also joined the calls, citing Hillary Clinton's crushing defeat against President Donald Trump in the 2016 election as a reason to abolish the current system.
After speaking to students at Penn State University on Tuesday afternoon, Beto lamented Clinton’s failure to take the White House despite winning the popular vote, claiming there's “a lot of wisdom” in calls for scrapping the body of electors established by the United States Constitution.
“I think there’s a lot to that. Because you had an election in 2016 where the loser got 3 million more votes than the victor,” O’Rourke said in a video posted online.
“It puts some states out of play altogether, they don’t feel like their votes really count.
“If we really want everyone to vote, to give them every reason to vote, we have to make sure their votes count and go to the candidate of their choosing.
"So I think there’s a lot of wisdom in that.”
Mr. Cohen, who introduced a constitutional amendment to abolish the Electoral College in January, said Tuesday that he plans to send the bill to Ms. Warren for her to sponsor it in the Senate.
“The people in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles — Republicans and conservatives live there, too, and vote there as well,” Mr. Cohen said on CNN.
“But right now people in Tennessee don’t count because we know the state’s going to go Republican.
"But if it’s a popular vote, people would come to Tennessee to get those votes, in Memphis and other places, and it would be a much more democratic system and fair.
“The American people need to take control of their government that’s been lost to entities that have eliminated the middle class,” he added.