Art | Business | Finance | Legal | Telecom | Web
Karen Murphy
US Election 2020 | Hillary Clinton, decider?

Six days before the US Presidential Election 2020 Hillary Clinton announced that she has become a New York State Elector. During an interview on SiriusXM she said that: "I'm an elector in New York, " and expressed her excitement at the prospect of getting to vote for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. Unlike many other democracies the voters in the United States do not technically vote for a candidate directly, but instead they are expressing their wishes to the State Electors who are then charged with actually voting for the candidates. It is only by convention that New York State Electors, of which there are 29, then vote for the candidates who achieved the popular vote in the State. Each State (and the District of Columbia) has a set number of Electors and to get the keys to the White House a presidential candidate is required to obtain at least 270 Electoral College votes.

However, it would seem that the new role which Clinton has taken on is in stark contrast to her earlier position on the future of the Electoral College. In the aftermath of the 2000 US Presidential Election, when Al Gore won the popular vote but lost the election, Clinton stated unequivocally her desire that the Electoral College be done away with and that the popular vote should prevail in US Elections. One assumes that the election which followed 16 years later would only have entrenched that position.

Clinton's appointment to the New York State Electoral College comes at a time when the New York State Senate is considering Bill S6886D which would require by legislation (rather than by convention) that electors in the state vote for the presidential and vice presidential candidates who received the highest number of votes from the state's voters. The bill has already passed the State Senate and is awaiting a hearing in the State Assembly, and if passed will essentially render the role of New York State Electors ceremonial.