California National Popular Vote for President Act (2008)

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The National Popular Vote for President Initiative (07-0048) was an initiated state statute that would have removed California from the electoral college and allowed the popular vote to decide the presidency.

In order to make the ballot, the initiative's supporters would have had to turn in 433,971 valid signatures by March 10, 2008.

On March 26, the Secretary of State's office announced that the measure had failed to qualify for the ballot.[1]

The initiative would have entered California into an interstate agreement to allocate California’s electoral votes to the presidential ticket receiving the most popular votes nationwide. Electoral votes would have been based on the national vote only in years when states possessing a majority of total electoral votes (270 of 538) have entered into the agreement. The initiative would have maintained California’s current system of awarding electoral votes to the statewide popular vote winner in other years.

Additionally, the initiative would have eliminated the $10 compensation and 5¢ per mile reimbursement of presidential electoral college electors, and mullify competing presidential-elector initiatives on the ballot that receive fewer votes.

Findings and Declaration of Purposes as written in the initiative were:

  • (a) In electing the President of the Unit ed States, the candidate who receive s the most votes in all 50 states and the District of Columbia should be elected.
  • (b) The method for electing the President should not be changed by an individual state acting alone. A change should only be made by states acting together.
  • (c) Under this Act, California enters into and enacts an agreement with other states called the "Agreement Among the States to Elect the President by National Popular Vote" which would guarantee that the presidential candidate receiving the most votes in all 50 states and the District of Columbia would win the Presidency.
  • (d) I This Act is intended to maintain California's long-standing winner-take -all system for the appointment of presidential electors until such time that the nation changes to a national popular vote as provided in the "Agreement Among the States to Elect the President by National Popular Vote."
  • (e) This Act eliminates the compensation and travel reimbursement for presidential electors, It is an honor for any voter to serve as a presidential elector and no financial payments are necessary.
  • (f) This Act is intended to be a comprehensive regulatory scheme concerning the appointment of presidential electors. Therefore, this measure is intended to conflict with any other measure on the same ballot that proposes a different manner of appointing presidential electors.[2]


Tom Steyer.


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