Reforming the Electoral College
Keith E. Whittington
kewhitt at PRINCETON.EDU
Fri Nov 17 10:10:13 PST 2000
Ann Althouse wrote:
> Isn't it flirting with danger to rely so heavily on South Dakota v. Dole?
> We should remember that the state in that case declined to argue on the
> "relatedness" prong, since it regarded the "independent prohibition" of the
> 21st amendment to be such a strong argument.
Though at least some reform proposals would be closely related to new federal
funds for upgrading voting technology, for example. But that still leaves two
big problems (from the perspective of accomplishing the reform) -- that would
provide the feds with a lot less financial leverage over the states than do
highway funds, and that would probably have a serious checkerboard effect as
only some jurisdictions will want or need to take advantage of such grants. I
think such reliance on Dole raises a separate problem, however, since it
involves an attempt to intervene in the states' relationship to their own
citizens as political actors (not just as legislative subjects), which this
Court might (appropriately) regard as pushing Dole rather far.
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