Concerning the editorial from the St. Louis Dispatch dealing with the counting of electoral votes that appeared in the Sentinel last Tuesday (“A step away from losing American democracy”), here is a suggestion for reforming the system that would be unambiguous, protected from political meddling, and would still embody the original intent of the constitution that the electoral vote be based on the congressional districts as a way of reflecting the distribution of the popular vote.
Amend the Constitution to require that each electoral vote be cast for the winner of the district represented by that vote. If no candidate wins a majority in that district, there shall be a runoff election, so that the winner in that district is still determined by the popular vote in that district, and there is no opportunity for the state Legislature to interfere with the process.
Challenging the results of an election was not the only threat to democracy brought by the last administration however, nor even the most dangerous one. The worse one was the staffing of Cabinet positions with cronies who might collude to consolidate power within the administration. We saw this happening when the president fired Cabinet officers who had been appointed to office by the Senate and replaced them with acting officers not confirmed by the Senate, who then might block any attempt to hold the president accountable for his actions.
The Constitution does not assign to the president the right to fire Cabinet officers who have been appointed by the Senate. The president only recommends candidates; the Senate hires them. The president might then recommend that an officer be fired, but the firing should still be solely the decision of the Senate. Therefore, amend the Constitution to so state.