According to the Virginian Pilot, a Senate subcommittee on Wednesday advanced SB723, a bill introduced by Senator Bill Carrico that would radically redistribute Virginia’s electoral votes. Rather than award the electors on the basis of which candidate won the most votes, Carrico’s scheme would essentially gerrymander the presidential elections, giving priority to the size of the geography won, rather that the number of votes.
Carrico’s bill could be heard in the full Senate Privileges and Elections Committee as soon as Tuesday. But, while the scheme would give the GOP a definite advantage in 2016 (since they’ve already gerrymandered the congressional districts to their benefit), not all members of the caucus have supported similar past proposals.
Lt. Governor Bill Bolling opposed an electoral vote gerrymander scheme as a State Senator.
In 2001, Senator Mary Margaret Whipple introduced SB1219 to allocate Virginia’s electoral votes according to the popular vote in each congressional district. The bill failed in the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee. Then-State Senator Bill Bolling, as well as Senators Norment, Martin, and Hanger opposed the bill. [Legislative Information System]
Four GOP State Senators opposed a similar 2008 measure.
In 2008, State Senator John Miller introduced legislation to award Virginia’s electoral votes according to the popular vote in each congressional district. The measure failed in the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee on a 2-9 vote. Senators Martin, Obenshain, Blevins, and Vogel opposed the bill. [Legislative Information System]
State Senator Jill Vogel opposed 2008 gerrymandering bill.
Vogel voted against a 2008 measure in committee. [Legislative Information System]
GOP State Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment and GOP Lt. Governor nominee candidate and State Senator Steve Martin have twice voted against electoral vote gerrymander bills.
As State Senators, Norment and Martin opposed measures in both 2001 and 2008. [Legislative Information System, Legislative Information System]