by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
At a shindig at the Center for American Progress, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) has reportedly voiced her grave concerns (one gets the sense that she has no other flavor of concern) about the fact that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote but still lost the election because of the Electoral College. …
… I understand that Warren’s indictment of Trump extends beyond her contempt for the Electoral College. Trump, the familiar refrain goes (and not without merit), is antagonistic to all manner of democratic norms. And I have no problem with liberals who want to fight back against that in good faith. But adherence to the rules — specifically constitutional rules — is a pretty important democratic norm. I have no doubt that it is exceedingly frustrating for Democrats that their candidate won the popular vote but still lost the election. I am at a loss, however, to understand why the political system’s adherence to the Constitution is a sign of our democracy’s ill health. Indeed, it seems to me that sticking with the rules is a sign of health.
Warren’s complaint is squarely in the progressive tradition of finding any impediment to their political success illegitimate, troubling, or suspect.