Nebraska is unique and we are proud about that fact.  We are the only state in the country to have a non-partisan Unicameral. We are the only state in the country to have 100% public power. And, we are one of only two states that splits our electoral votes for the US President by Congressional District.

Sen. McCoy, representing parts of Douglas, Sarpy and Washington counties, wanted to take away part of our state’s history.  Fortunately, he failed.

LB21 is “being held/indefinitely postponed” by the Government, Military and Veterans Affairs Committee on Mar. 9, 2011.  That essentially means the bill is dead.  While we hear some maneuvers could happen where the bill could show up on the floor, we do not see that happening.

McCoy’s bill, LB21, would have reinstated “the winner-take-all system for electing presidential and vice-presidential candidates, awarding all electoral votes to the candidates who receive the highest number of votes in the state.”  The reason McCoy introduced this bill is simple: Republicans do not like that certain parts of our state are growing more Independent and more Democratic, so they are doing anything and everything to try to stop those trends from infringing on their power.

This bill was incredibly unpopular.  In fact, only 16% of Nebraskans supported McCoy’s proposed change.  Now, that doesn’t mean Nebraskans are happy with the current system either.

A poll conducted by a movement called “the popular vote” found most Nebraskans prefer a third option: the presidential candidate who gets the most votes nationwide on Election Day wins our electoral votes.

Sen. Ken Haar introduced LB583 which would start the process to implement the popular vote in Nebraska.  If passed, it would only go into effect once the number of states who support the measure have a majority of the electoral college (that’s 270 or more).  So far, similar bills have passed in 21 states.

But for now, NE-2 — which gave a Democrat an electoral vote for the first time since 1964 when Lyndon B. Johnson carried the state — has the chance to do that again.  The GOP candidate will also have the chance to earn that electoral vote and the other 4 electoral votes Nebraska has to award in 2012.

Our message to both parties is CAMPAIGN STATEWIDE.  All Nebraskans deserve to see you, meet you and have your campaign team in our communities telling us your ideas to continue to make our country strong.

ACTION: We encourage you to send Letters to the Editor to the local papers of State Senators who voted against this bill.  We will update the list of which State Senators those are once we get the official list from the committee.  For now, you can email and thank Senator Avery who chairs the Committee.