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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez calls the Electoral College a racist ‘scam’

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called the Electoral College “a scam” that undermines the voices of voters of color in a series of Instagram stories on Monday.

The New York Democrat shared a March New York magazine story entitled, “Here’s Every Defense of the Electoral College — and Why They’re All Wrong.”

She pointed to data that African-American, Hispanic, and Asian-American voters are underrepresented by the Electoral College when compared to white Americans. This is in part because people of color are less likely to live in rural states, which are afforded at least three Electoral College votes regardless of population size.

“Due to severe racial disparities in certain states, the Electoral College effectively weighs white voters over voters of color, as opposed to a ‘one person, one vote’ system where all our voters are counted equally,” she wrote.

She argued in another post that defenders of the Electoral College should advocate for the inclusion of Washington, DC, Puerto Rico, and other US territories “aka colonies,” which do not have Electoral College votes.

“Isn’t it strange how Electoral College defenders under the guise of ‘fair’ representation never bring that same energy to demanding rights for citizens in DC or US territories?”

Read more: Elizabeth Warren wants to eliminate the Electoral College and let the popular vote decide presidential elections

Ocasio-Cortez also argued the votes of Republicans and rural dwellers in blue states are being undermined by the system.

The freshman lawmaker, who represents parts of the densely-populated Bronx and Queens, posted her comments while apparently on a trip out West.

“We’re coming to you live from the Electoral College,” Ocasio-Cortez quipped over footage of what appeared to be the desert in an Instagram story on Monday night. “Many votes here, as you can see. Very efficient way to choose leadership of the country — I mean, I can’t think of any other way, can you?”

This isn’t the first time Ocasio-Cortez has pushed for eliminating the Electoral College. She made headlines last fall when she called to get rid of the system, describing it as a vestige of slavery.

“It is well past time we eliminate the Electoral College, a shadow of slavery’s power on America today that undermines our nation as a democratic republic,” she tweeted last October.

In response to MSNBC host Chris Hayes’ June tweet that the borough of Queens, New York has more residents than 16 states combined, Ocasio-Cortez replied, “Yet one more reason to abolish the electoral college,” adding a winking emoji.

A 2020 talking point

Ocasio-Cortez shared and commented on a New York Magazine piece calling to abolish the Electoral College.
Screenshot/Instagram

Democrats have increasingly voiced opposition to the Electoral College. And some prominent 2020 presidential candidates, including Sen. Elizabeth Warren and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg are calling for a constitutional amendment to abolish the system.

“Come a general election, presidential candidates don’t come to places like Mississippi. They also don’t come to places like California or Massachusetts, because we’re not the battleground states,” Warren said during a March CNN town hall.

She went on, “My view is that every vote matters and the way we can make that happen is that we can have national voting and that means get rid of the Electoral College — and every vote counts.”

Prior to entering politics, Trump himself railed against the “sham” Electoral College, calling the system a “disaster for democracy” and a “total travesty” in 2012.

But since losing the popular vote to Hillary Clinton by about 3 million votes — and winning the Electoral College, he’s called the system “far better for the U.S.A.”

And the Republican Party has long been opposed to eliminating the Electoral College.

“The idea that it’s racist is preposterous,” Dana Perino, a Fox News host and former press secretary under the George W. Bush administration, told fellow Fox host Tucker Carlson last fall. “It’s Democrats squawking because they’re struggling to find a message, they’re struggling to find unity, they just want to blame the system.”

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