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07/25/2024 11:23 AM
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=H&SPick=20210&cosponId=37260
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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: April 26, 2022 11:51 AM
From: Representative Kevin J. Boyle
To: All House members
Subject: Preventing Faithless Electors
 

As the 2020 election approached,  fears swirled about how the results of the popular vote might be called into question. One such fear was that the losing party could have bypassed the normal process for appointing Electoral College members by popular vote, and instead convince state legislatures to install electors loyal to their cause. These so-called “faithless electors” are not prohibited under the U.S. Constitution, which does not actually mandate that electors be chosen according to popular vote results in each state. In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed in Bush v. Gore that states have the power to “take back the power to appoint electors.”

Though the fear of faithless electors never materialized in 2020, the possibility alone adds a potential threat to the state popular vote, as well as to voter confidence in the value of their ballot. To prevent these fears from materializing, I plan to introduce legislation that would amend the Pennsylvania election code to require presidential electors to vote for the presidential and vice-presidential candidates who received the highest number of votes in the commonwealth during the general election.

Under this plan, which is similar to Colorado and Oklahoma's law, faithless electors who vote against the candidates they vowed to support would:
  • Face a misdemeanor punishable by fine.
  • Have their vote invalidated.
  • Be replaced.
Please join me in taking this commonsense step to preserve the legitimacy of the popular vote in Pennsylvania and to deliver a clear message to Pennsylvania citizens that their vote counts. 
  
 
 



Introduced as HB2623