© 2009 jbjd
The title of this post is inspired by a line in the last stanza from one of my favorite poems, Reluctance, by my favorite poet, Robert Frost.
Ah, when to the heart of man
Was it ever less than a treason
To go with the drift of things,
To yield with a grace to reason,
And bow and accept the end
Of a love or a season?
I have always found giving up without a fight to be treasonous, especially when I am certain I am right. And I am certainly right about Barack Obama. That is, people within the DNC selected him to become POTUS notwithstanding the evidence indicates he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job. Specifically, he is not a NBC. Indefatigable, I have assembled this primer which, hopefully, will end the interminable farce over how best to address his Constitutional eligibility. I name the names of those people responsible for depositing him in the Oval Office, and define the precise scope of their culpability, in anticipation that efforts to rectify this election anomaly will now be focused squarely on them. Keep in mind that, by identifying the people with direct culpability, I am by definition ruling out everyone else. For starters, this blameless faction includes Barack Obama. Because even assuming he is not a NBC, without these others, he could never have gotten the job.
Recognizing the real culprits in this drama requires an understanding of the process for electing the POTUS, as spelled out in the Constitution. Fortunately, our tax dollars paid for an enterprise that will contribute to such an understanding. The Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress published an excellent report entitled, “The Electoral College: How It Works,” which contains this concise summary on the Presidential election process. Please, master this passage before you proceed. (All emphasis to the original is mine.) (jbjd note (08.05.10): Subsequent to writing this article, I decided to stop referring to Electors using the word “College,” as this term does not appear in the Constitution.)
When Americans vote for a President and Vice President, they actually vote for presidential electors, known collectively as the electoral college. It is these electors, chosen by the people, who elect the chief executive. The Constitution assigns each state a number of electors equal to the combined total of its Senate and House of Representatives delegations; at present, the number of electors per state ranges from three to 55, for a total of 538. Anyone may serve as an elector, except for Members of Congress, and persons holding offices of “Trust or Profit” under the Constitution. In each presidential election year, a group (ticket or slate) of candidates for elector is nominated by political parties and other groups in each state, usually at a state party convention, or by the party state committee. It is these elector-candidates, rather than the presidential and vice presidential nominees, for whom the people vote in the election held on Tuesday after the first Monday in November (jbjd note: date omitted). In most states, voters cast a single vote for the slate of electors pledged to the party presidential and vice presidential candidates of their choice. The slate winning the most popular votes is elected; this is known as the winner-take-all, or general ticket, system. Maine and Nebraska use the district system, under which two electors are chosen on a statewide, at-large basis, and one is elected in each congressional district. Electors assemble in their respective states on Monday after the second Wednesday in December (jbjd note: date omitted). They are pledged and expected, but not required, to vote for the candidates they represent. (jbjd note (08.05.10): Some states have enacted laws that require Electors to support the nominee of the party; but no faithless Elector has ever been prosecuted for violating this oath, and Congress has never failed to ratify the vote of the Electors even when this includes the votes of these faithless Electors.) Separate ballots are cast for President and Vice President, after which the electoral college ceases to exist for another four years. The electoral vote results are counted and declared at a joint session of Congress, held on January 6 of the year succeeding the election. (jbjd note: Congress enacted a law changing this date to January 8 just for the year 2009.) A majority of electoral votes (currently 270 of 538) is required to win. This report will be updated as events warrant.
Thus, on January 8, 2009, Congress finalized the election of BO for POTUS when, exercising a procedure spelled out in the Constitution, they ratified the individual vote tallies from Electoral College votes cast in all 50 states, and the District of Columbia, which had been submitted to them via the Constitutionally prescribed process by then Vice President Cheney, the President of the Senate, who had received these totals directly from the individual state Electoral Colleges as required by the Constitution. http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/faq.html
Immediately after this Congressional Ratification, self-identified “Patriots,” certain BO is not a NBC, flooded the blogosphere with hyperbolic rants against everyone in Congress for failing to insist on a Constitutional vetting of the man before voting for Ratification. These so-called ‘Patriots’ referred to Congresspeople of both parties as “Traitors,” accusing their elected officials of committing “Treason” for failing to uphold the eligibility requirements for POTUS spelled out in the Constitution, even though, ironically, the Constitution itself required Ratification once Congress was confident the Electoral College had conducted its vote in accordance with the ‘process’ prescribed by the Constitution.
In other words, Congress is not directly responsible for making BO POTUS but only for Ratifying the results of the voting undertaken by the Electoral College. This means that they are also not responsible for the fact he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job, even assuming he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job.
This does not mean the Electoral College is directly responsible for making BO POTUS.
Neither the Constitution nor federal law prescribe the manner in which each state appoints its Electors other than directing that they be appointed on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November. In most States, the Electors are appointed through a state-wide popular election (“general election”).
That is, voters only elect Electors in the state’s general election.
Currently, Electors are nominated to fill these positions by the political parties at their state party conventions or by a vote of the party’s central committee in each state. Electors are often selected to recognize their service and dedication to the party. Generally, they hold a leadership position in the party. Often, they are major party fundraisers. They may be state elected officials but, the Constitution prohibits members of Congress from becoming Electors in the Electoral College.
Whether the names of these nominated Electors then appear on the ballot depends on election laws that vary state to state. In some states, the names of these Electors appear along with the letter “D” or “R,” along with the name of the party nominee. In other states, only the name of the nominee appears along with the designation of the party. But regardless of the appearance of the names on the general election ballot, voters in each state only choose the electors on the day of the general election. http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/faq.html
Weeks after their ‘appointment’ by means of the general election, these elected state Electors meet in each state – this gathering of Electors is referred to as the Electoral College, although the term Electoral College does not appear in the Constitution – to cast votes for the next POTUS. The Constitution is silent about the factors that go into their voting decision. Thus, Electors are Constitutionally free to cast votes for whomever they want. This means, they may even vote for a person who is not the nominee of their political party or, is not in the same party as the slate of Electors that won the state’s general election. However, some states have enacted laws that require the slate of Electors receiving the largest popular vote in the state’s general election, must cast their votes for the Presidential nominee from the same political party. In other words, in these states, if the D’s received more votes than the R’s, then the Electors for the D party must cast their votes for the D party nominee. And every state except for NE and ME, and the District of Columbia are winner take all, meaning, all of the electoral votes assigned to that state (or the District of Columbia) must be cast by Electors of the winning political party.
Immediately after the vote of the Electoral College, self-identified “Patriots,” certain BO was Constitutionally ineligible for the job, flooded the blogosphere with hyperbolic rants against the Democrats in the Electoral Colleges who cast votes for BO without first vetting him for Constitutional qualifications. These ‘Patriots’ referred to Electors representing the Democratic Party as “Traitors,” accusing them of committing “Treason” for failing to uphold the eligibility requirements spelled out in the Constitution. But remember, the Constitution does not require Electors to vet the party candidate for President as to Constitutional eligibility, being silent as to the qualification of the person Electors may elect for the job.
In other words, the Electoral College is not directly responsible for making BO POTUS but only for casting their votes for him in accordance with both the Constitution and state law, as the nominee of the D party when that party was the winner of the state’s general election. This also means that they are not responsible for the fact he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job, even assuming he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job.
Then, the responsibility for electing an ineligible POTUS must be found in a process directly related to his nomination.
(TO BE CONTINUED IN PART 2 OF 2.)