Michigan Information & Research Service Inc.
Michigan Information & Research Service Inc.

National Popular Vote Could Soon Be Up For a Vote 

06/07/24 02:24 PM By Team MIRS

(Source: MIRS.news, Published 06/06/2024) Exactly a year after two bills adding Michigan to the National Popular Vote compact were referred to the House floor, House Democratic caucus members are now being asked again how they would vote on the legislation if it was put up on the board.  

Rep. Carrie A. Rheingans (D-Ann Arbor), the lead sponsor on the package, said she feels that if this issue was to go up on the voting board next week, she’d have the necessary support.  

Several sources close to the House told MIRS the subject of National Popular Vote was again being considered by the caucus, as part of an effort to accomplish major policy reform before the 2024 election.  

The legislation, Rheingans’ HB 4156 and HB 4440 , would give Michigan the green light to join the National Popular Vote compact, meaning the state would join those casting their Electoral College votes for the presidential candidate who wins the popular vote.  

The bills received lots of support, but also some opposition in committee, including from groups like Save our States, which believes the legislation could inject more complexity into Michigan’s elections, giving bad actors and election deniers opportunities to twist the legislation.  

The legislation was voted out of the House Elections Committee on June 6, 2023, where the bills have awaited further action ever since (See “National Popular Vote & Election Access Bills Move,” 6/6/23), despite Rheingans making their passage her No. 1 priority.  

Rheingans initially said she was pretty sure her bill could get a House vote before the 2023 summer recess, and it appears that she’s trying again before this summer break.  

While Rheingans said she’s confident in the caucus’ support, another source told MIRS they believe there are still a few holdouts within the caucus.  

Around 50 percent of Michiganders supported National Popular Vote, as of a June 2023 poll,  but House Republicans last year said they wouldn’t be likely to get on board.  

Thursday, Rheingans told MIRS she’s “feeling great about National Popular Vote,” and believes that making the change would ensure that Michigan voters feel their voices are being heard and their votes matter. 

She added that it would also secure Michigan’s status as a state for candidates to visit, as battleground status isn’t always permanent.  

“The principle that undergirds all of this is that each one of us has a vote, and every one of those votes is equal,” she said. “And right now, the presidential candidates are only campaigning in battleground states. That is not fair.”  

Rheingans said her sister in Illinois “doesn't even know if it matters if she votes in her presidential election, because the outcome of their state's Electoral College votes is already known.”  

“We've seen in past years when Michigan wasn’t a battleground state,” she said. “This status as a battleground state is fleeting, and instead of just trying to elect a president using the battleground states of America, we need to elect our president using our founding principle - one person, one vote. 

“I had to win the most popular votes in my district to be elected,” Rheingans added. “I think the president should have to do the same thing in their district. Their district is just the entire United States.”