Electoral College means NM counts
RE: THE op-ed by Melora Palmer (Jan. 14) promoting the National Popular Vote.
The usual criticism of the Electoral College is that it gives more power to small states — like New Mexico! It would be foolish for N.M. to deliberately give up its advantage in the Electoral College. Palmer says that N.M. would get more attention in election campaigns under a popular-vote system. That is highly unlikely. Candidates would do all their campaigning in the biggest states and the biggest cities, because that’s where most of the votes are. The fact is that New Mexico is relatively small both in population and in electoral votes, so we are never going to be the focus of attention, but I’m sure we would get less attention under a popularvote system. The most attention N.M. ever got in national elections was during the brief period around 2000 when we were one of the swing states — maybe that’s what we should aspire to!
Furthermore, I’m not sure that people in New Mexico who favor the National Popular Vote have thought through the consequences. New Mexico seems to be a pretty solidly Democratic state these days. If a Democratic presidential candidate were to win the popular vote, then he or she would get N.M.’s electoral votes under either system. But if a Republican candidate were to win the popular vote, then NPV could result in the Republican getting NM’s electoral votes against the wishes of the people of the state! MICHAEL WILSON Albuquerque