A Republican lawmaker in Wisconsin wants to change how Wisconsin awards electoral votes — a proposal that spurred a swift, negative reaction Wednesday from Democrats who see the move as an attempt to help Republican presidential candidates.
Wisconsin joins at least two other states where changes to how Electoral College votes are being discussed heading into the 2012 presidential election. The 10 electoral votes in Wisconsin, which has a winner-take-all system, went to President Barack Obama in the 2008 election.
Wisconsin state Rep. Dan LeMahieu on Wednesday circulated a proposal for co-sponsors that make so a single electoral vote would go to the winner in each of Wisconsin’s eight congressional districts. The statewide winner would get two electoral votes.
The proposal got a tepid response from Republicans who control the Legislature. The Legislature could take up the bill this fall, although Republican Gov. Scott Walker and legislative leaders have said they want to stay focused on bills related to the economy. After this month, the Legislature isn’t scheduled to be back in session until January.
“We’re much more focused on legislation that will help create jobs and get the economy on track,” said Andrew Welhouse, a spokesman for Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald.