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The Baltimore Sun

Electoral College protects small states

Is there anybody else in Maryland who is as incensed as I am over the latest outrage by the House of Delegates?

In its zeal to spite President Bush and redress a perceived flaw in our voting process, the House voted for a bill that violates the Constitution of the United States by taking all the electoral votes from Maryland and throwing them to the winner of the national popular vote ("Delegates approve popular-vote bill," April 3).

Notice that I did not say the popular vote of Maryland but the national popular vote.

That would mean that, using the example of the election of 1972, even if Maryland voted overwhelmingly to elect George McGovern, the state's electoral votes would go to Richard Nixon (who won the popular vote by a large margin). Or even if Maryland voted overwhelmingly for Jimmy Carter in 1980, our electoral votes would go exclusively to Ronald Reagan.

Think of the ramifications of this outrage.

New York City has about 2.5 million more people than the entire state of Maryland - so, if this rule ever comes into force, the vote of New York City would mean more than the entire state of Maryland in determining our electoral vote in the next presidential election.

Los Angeles and Chicago combined have about 1 million more people than Maryland - their votes would also count more than Maryland's votes.

If these cities can out-vote the entire state of Maryland, how much effort do you think the candidates will put into campaigning in Maryland or listening to our concerns?

The beauty of the Electoral College system is that it forces the candidates to consider the smaller states.

It prevents the tyranny of the majority, and gives the "little guy" a voice in government.

But our legislators just voted to deprive us of that protection.

David C. Stark

Bel Air

Change undermines value of our votes

Perhaps a Sun headline should read: "The right to vote is reinstated for ex-felons while the privilege to elect the president is taken away from every law-abiding citizen in Maryland."

The state legislature and the governor are working to change the way Maryland's electoral votes are cast ("Delegates approve popular-vote bill," April 3) even as they work to restore voting rights for former felons ("Ex-felon voting rights bill passes," March 27).

I agree that the Electoral College should probably be reviewed and updated.

But to establish a rule under which Maryland's electoral votes would, if the stipulations of the law are fulfilled, be cast for the winner of the national popular vote, would take away my vote, my voice and those of all citizens of the state.

If this illogical law is enacted, it leads to one question: Why should I bother voting? Why should anyone vote?

All we would have to do is sit back and let the rest of the nation vote for us.

Raymond L. Miles


Democrats set stage for their next defeat

I believe that the Democratic Party has misinterpreted the results of the last election.

The Democrats who run Maryland seem to believe that the people elected them to promote criminal rights, embrace illegal aliens and raise taxes.

The Democrats who now run Congress have convinced themselves that they have a mandate to undercut our troops, raise taxes and placate the union and environmental extremists who worked for their election.

In 2008, the American people will let the Democrats know if they agree with the party's assessment of the last election. I predict that they won't.

It took the fiasco of Jimmy Carter's presidency to give us Ronald Reagan, and this current crop of zealots is setting the groundwork for a solid Republican victory in 2008.

Michael DeCicco


The best president big money can buy?

According to The Sun's front page Thursday, the leading candidates for president raised $115.5 million in the first three months of the year ("The politics of money," April 5). And that doesn't count all the candidates, only the front-runners.

What a waste of money. Can you imagine what that kind of money could do for the schools in Baltimore? Or for New Orleans?

How about if it were used to pay for health insurance for those who need it? Or to feed the hungry? Or for relief for Darfur? Or to help your favorite charity?

We will get the best president that money can buy.

But will that make the country better?

I seriously doubt it.

Pat Harcarik


Proud to see Pelosi talking with Syrians

I commend House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her delegation for their travels in the Middle East to acquire firsthand information and speak directly to our friends and adversaries about prospects for peace in the region ("Pelosi, colleagues push Assad to stop backing militants," April 5).

Face-to-face conversation is what is needed to forge a way forward that takes account of the national interests of all countries, not just our own.

It is hypocritical of President Bush to call Ms. Pelosi's contact with Syria counterproductive after he said nothing about members of his own party who visited Syria just days before.

What is truly counterproductive is requiring our adversaries to affirm our position before we agree to sit down and talk.

A vacuum of diplomacy leads increasingly to violence.

Hope lies in a political solution developed through innovative diplomacy, which unfortunately is not a strong point of the Bush administration.

David L. Pollitt

Forest Hill

Pelosi lacks power to speak for nation

Who elected House Speaker Nancy Pelosi our international spokesperson ("Pelosi, colleagues push Assad to stop backing militants," April 5)?

Ms. Pelosi should be impeached for treason. She and the rest of the liberal Democrats are tearing our country apart. They want us to make deals with terrorists who want to destroy the United States and Israel.

But Ms. Pelosi has no authority to deal with any foreign leaders, let alone our enemies.

Allan Kaufman

Owings Mills

Police protected city during riot

I remember the Baltimore riots of 39 years ago well, since I was a police sergeant assigned to the Baltimore Police Department's tactical division at the time.

Nowhere in the article "Echoes of 1968" (April 4) did The Sun mention the actions of the Baltimore police. Yet the fact is we were the ones on the front line, so to speak, not the National Guard or the Army.

We were out there for the entire duration of the riot, and most of us worked around the clock. We slept for a few hours in the stationhouses and were back on the street.

The Sun should give credit where credit is due.

We were there and did our job. Many city police officers got hurt and some even retired as a result of their injuries during the riot.

No doubt it was a bad time for Baltimore and America, but the men and women of the Baltimore police did their duty and certainly saved Baltimore from being a total disaster.

Edward C. Mattson


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