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Facts Forum News, Vol.5, No. 8, August 1956
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Facts Forum. Facts Forum News, Vol.5, No. 8, August 1956 - File 026. 1956-08. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. June 3, 2020. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/1469/show/1425.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Facts Forum. (1956-08). Facts Forum News, Vol.5, No. 8, August 1956 - File 026. Facts Forum News, 1955-1956. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/1469/show/1425

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Facts Forum, Facts Forum News, Vol.5, No. 8, August 1956 - File 026, 1956-08, Facts Forum News, 1955-1956, University of Houston Libraries, accessed June 3, 2020, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/1469/show/1425.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Facts Forum News, Vol.5, No. 8, August 1956
Series Title Facts Forum News
Creator
  • Facts Forum
Publisher Facts Forum
Date August 1956
Language eng
Subject
  • Anti-communist movements
  • Conservatism
  • Politics and government
  • Hunt, H. L.
Place
  • Dallas, Texas
Genre
  • journals (periodicals)
Type
  • Text
Identifier AP2.F146 v. 5 1956; OCLC: 1352973
Collection
  • University of Houston Libraries
  • Facts Forum News
Rights No Copyright - United States: This item is in the public domain in the United States and may be used freely in the United States. The item may not be in the public domain under the copyright laws of other countries.
Item Description
Title File 026
Transcript the excessive political importance of large, doubtful states, encouraging the major parties to choose candidates and seek votes elsewhere throughout the country. It would also provide a check on the use of excessive political power by large cities, and especially by minority groups within those cities. Under the district system, voters in city districts could control at most their own electoral votes and the few electoral votes cast at large. Choice of presidential electors by the district system would limit the political effects of local frauds, bad weather, intense local issues, and other such factors. Much was made in the Senate debates over the importance of developing a system by which bad weather or catastrophe would not keep the electors from fulfilling their office on a certain day. Under the unit rule method, outcome of an entire state's electoral vote could be changed if one elector were prevented by forces of nature or some other accident from casting his vote from the state capitol. The Mundt-Coudert advocates point out that such forces would be more localized in the districts, and the absence of one district electoral vote could not possibly have such far-reaching effects. Thev- claim this amendment would foster the growth of the second partv in states usually dominated by one partv, and would reduce the present difference in weight between popular votes cast in large states and similar votes cast in small states. In the opinion of the backers of this plan, it would end the distortion created by giving all of a state's electoral votes to the candidate receiving a plurality of the popular votes in that state. This plan would maintain the federal principle, with no precedent that would introduce into the election machinery the principle of proportional representation, and would not threaten the control of the states over voting requirements. In fact, the district system would accomplish these reforms with a minimum of constitutional change. Under the present constitutional provisions, state legislatures may decide voluntarily to choose presidential electors on the district system. It would be a return to the late 1700's and early 1800's for it was normal then for the states to cast electoral votes by congressional districts. Views of Opponents of the Mundt-Coudert Amendment In reply, opponents of the Mundt- Coudert district electoral vote plan say that the proposal would not accomplish its purpose of making the electoral vote correspond more nearly to the popular vote. All it does, they say, is to reduce the size of the electoral units for electors from the states, as they are at the present time, to congressional districts. These districts, too, are not now of equal size. For instance, in Indiana there is a district with 551,777 people, and another with only 258,441 people. Many other states have similar inconsistencies. The basing of presidential elections upon congressional districts would surely increase existing temptations toward gerrymandering, a term applied to the dividing of a district in an unnatural way to give one political party or pressure group an unfair advantage. This plan would arbitrarily balance one district against another, despite great differences in population, and therefore balance one electoral vote against another, although one vote may represent four times the popular vote of the other. Opponents contend that since it is in general the rural districts which have the smaller population per district, the effect of the Mundt-Coudert amendment is substantially to increase the influence of the rural population in selection of the President and Vice President. While it has been suggested thrf the problem of gerrymandering could be controlled by federal regulation, opponents of this plan argue that such intervention of the federal government into the election machinery would be undesirable. Another objection raised is that the symmetry which it would seek to obj tain between the methods of selecting members of Congress and members o* the executive branch is in fact unwise- It is suggested that the different methods which are used in this country M the selection of the different branches of government help provide the chec*5 and balances which are part of the strength of our system of government.'- • The Mundt-Coudert amendment is also criticized by some because it doe* not provide for abolition of the office of elector. Contrary to the thought that tlus plan would foster the growth of W parties in present one-party statCT opponents say it would encouraf? one-party voting in the South by •" creasing that section's influence •'. national elections. Likewise, it wou1 diminish the influence of states \vher. there is a balance of political sen" ment by dividing their electoral vote* There are six states that are und" tricted; they select their congressrn<* at large. The Mundt-Coudert p1'1", would permit such states to contin" on I K Huddles on the convention floor are part of the accepted pattern of party politics. Most ol the suggestions for electoral reform include methods to minimize undue influence of pressure groups. Page 24 l2Anu.'rk\m Knlcrprisu Report No. 616, March 1956, p. 13. Facis Forum News, August, p- 19* lo,. -128.
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