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National Popular Vote’s dignified death in New Hampshire

Sean Parnell - Sep 11, 2020

State Updates

The committee on Election Law in the New Hampshire House of Representatives met yesterday afternoon to consider the National Popular Vote interstate compact.

The committee on Election Law in the New Hampshire House of Representatives met yesterday afternoon to consider the National Popular Vote interstate compact. The meeting wasn’t to decide the bill’s fate for the current legislative session— the committee and the full House both already rejected the bill this year. Instead, the meeting was simply to decide whether or not to recommend that the next legislature take up the bill. As one Democratic state representative described the procedural intricacies to me, it was the final act in the legislature’s “Death With Dignity” process for bills that can’t pass.

The outcome was therefore mostly symbolic, but the fact that the committee vote was 11-5 against recommending the bill for next year is certainly good news. Not surprisingly, the opposition to NPV was bipartisan—six Republicans and five Democrats voted against NPV, while five Democrats voted for it. The Democratic committee chair was among those voting against NPV.

The strong bipartisan vote against NPV is not binding, and the compact is certain to be introduced next year in New Hampshire. But defenders of the Electoral College should be pleased to know that at least at this moment both Democratic and Republican legislators in the Granite State are sticking by the idea that New Hampshire’s four electoral votes should be chosen by New Hampshire’s voters.