Proposal would move Florida away from Electoral College

New bill to add Florida to National Popular Vote compact
Published: Sep. 27, 2023 at 4:20 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 27, 2023 at 10:33 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV/Gray Florida Capital Bureau) - The 2024 presidential election is more than a year away, and a new survey shows that half of all Americans say they are in favor of ditching the way the U.S. president is selected.

There’s a proposal for lawmakers to consider Florida joining the National Popular Vote Compact.

Under the U.S. Constitution, when you cast your vote for president, you’re not really voting for the president, but instead who you want delegates to vote for in the Electoral College. A candidate needs 270 electoral votes to move into the White House.

A recent Pew Research Center survey says 65% of Americans support moving away from the Electoral College.

“It’s important for the will of the national popular vote to follow the will of the majority of Americans,” Rep. Mike Gottlieb, (D) Davie, said.

Gottlieb filed a bill for the 2024 session where Florida would join the National Popular Vote Compact. It’s an agreement among states where those electoral votes would go to the winner of the most votes nationwide, regardless of who won in that state.

Washington, D.C. and 16 states already part of the compact, with 205 electoral votes.

Gottlieb said he filed this proposal because he wants to make sure Florida’s Electoral College votes are decided at the ballot box and not at the state capitol.

“In recent years there’s been talk of utilizing legislatures to overturn the popular vote,” Gottlieb said.

“It’s an idea that has no place in this Republic,” Republican Party of Florida Vice-Chair Evan Power said.

The Founding Fathers established the Electoral College in the Constitution as a compromise. Power said it is a compromise he believes should stay.

“You see all of America is reflected, not just the population centers. If you look at the failed policies of Los Angeles, people in Albuquerque don’t want them imposed on them,” Power said.

With Republicans in control of the Florida Legislature, it’s not likely this bill will even get a hearing. But if this does pass and become law, it wouldn’t even take effect until there are 270 electoral college votes apart of the agreement.

The Florida House and Senate will begin considering bills during committee hearings next month.

Proposals won’t be voted on until the legislative session begins on January 9.