A move by several states to change the “electoral college” into a popular vote for president would be “very dangerous” and would “give up our sovereignty,” former US Rep. Francisco “Quico” Canseco said Tuesday.
Canseco, who was elected to the 23rd Congressional District that includes Alpine in the Republican landslide of 2010, said the election of the president was to be decided by the electoral college to protect the smaller states when the US Constitution was created.
Changing to a straight popular vote would mean Presidents would only have to run in the larger cities like New York, Chicago, Dallas and Houston, and smaller areas would have no voice.
“That would be the end of the Republic,” he said, referring to the fact that the United States is a republic in which individual voters select people to represent them in government.
The preface to the US Constitution says “We the people,” not “we the politicians,” he said. Ours was the first country in the world to put sovereignty in the hands of the people, not the government, and current policies in Washington endanger that balance, Canseco said.
There was great concern as the Constitution was debated about protecting smaller areas and minorities.
“There are anomalies, to be sure,” he said. “If Al Gore carried the popular vote but George [W.] Bush won the electoral vote, that’s an anomaly. So be it. That’s our system and it has worked very well for more than 220 years.”
Canseco faces Will Hurd of San Antonio for the Republican nomination in the runoff May 27. The winner of the runoff will face Democrat Pete Gallego of Alpine in November.
In a wide-ranging discussion with supporters at the Reata Restaurant Tuesday night and the Bread and Breakfast Wednesday morning, Canseco said a rapidly-growing economy would do help the country deal with a deficit of more than $17 trillion far more than tax increases would.
One key tool would be trade with our neighbors and the US does not currently have a Latin American trade policy.