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1 American state to punish faithless electors

Officials in Washington state plan to impose up to $1,000 fines on four Electoral College electors who were faithless to the state’s voters, refusing to vote on Monday for Hillary Clinton.

Of the state’s 12 electors, who were under a mandate to vote for Clinton since she won the state’s Nov. 8 presidential election, eight cast their votes for her on Monday when the Electoral College met in statehouses across the country.

But three voted for Republican Secretary of State Colin Powell and one voted for Faith Spotted Eagle, a Dakota Access Pipeline activist.

It was part of a move energized by leftist activists who were unwilling to accept Donald Trump’s victory.

They had been trying to convince Republican electors to vote for someone else, and even Democrat electors were encouraged to vote for another Republican, hoping Trump would be denied the requisite 270 votes.

Not only did they fail, but it likely was a futile effort from the start, since had Trump not gotten the 270 votes, the election would have been tossed into the Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives, where Trump and Clinton would have been the only candidates.

Nick Adams’ book, “The American Boomerang: How The World’s Greatest Turnaround Nation Will Do It Again,” is endorsed by the likes of Dr. Ben Carson, Glenn Beck, Dick Morris, Gov. Mike Huckabee and Dennis Prager

Trump lost two of the electors that supposedly had been committed to him on election night, but Clinton lost five.

In Colorado, one elector was replaced after refusing to vote for the state’s winner, Clinton.

Another elector from Hawaii defected from Clinton to vote for Bernie Sanders. The two faithless GOP electors were in Texas.

On a blog for the state of Washington was a report about the state’s electors that noted the three votes for Powell and one for Spotted Eagle.

“It was the first time Washington had a ‘faithless’ elector since Mike Padden of Spokane Valley, now a state senator. He voted for Ronald Reagan in 1976, rather than Gerald Ford, who had carried the state that year,” the post said.

“The legislature quickly passed a law imposing a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for voting for someone other than the nominee,” the report said. “Secretary of State Kim Wyman, the state’s chief elections officer, said she will enforce the statute. She is conferring with the attorney general on a process for levying the penalty.”

The four renegades also refused to vote for Tim Kaine for vice president, the blog reported.

“One apiece [went] for his fellow senators Maria Cantwell, Susan Collins and Elizabeth Warren; and one for Winona LaDuke, a native American environmental activist.”

At the legal blog the Volokh Conspiracy, there was a little skepticism.

“Though I’m not an expert on the subject, I’m inclined to think that a state may not legally bind electors to do the voters’ will, just as it can’t legally bind senators or representatives to vote a particular way. The electors’ job, according to the Constitution, is to ‘vote’ for president, and that seems to me to mean choosing who they want to vote for, and not just following a legal command.

“There may be political ramifications for them if they don’t vote the way their constituents want (not unlikely ramifications, given that many electors are active in politics). And I think that the modern American constitutional tradition has generally been that electors should vote the way they were elected to vote; for that reason, many electors might feel it their moral duty, even if not their legal duty, to vote that way. But I don’t think a state can legally punish them for voting the way they choose,” the blog posting said.

Probably the most in-your-face campaign to overturn the Electoral College vote came from “a slew of has-been and B- or C-list celebs,” who made a video for their cause:

There were a number of predictions that many electors would flee from Trump before the vote, although they proved to be wrong.

But there were numerous confirmed death threats issued against Trump supporters.

The Electoral College results will be announced officially Jan. 6, at which time the presidential election result will become final.

The threats of violence against Republican electors followed the anger expressed by Democratic leaders, including President Obama, at the election outcome.

Nick Adams’ book, “The American Boomerang: How The World’s Greatest Turnaround Nation Will Do It Again,” is endorsed by the likes of Dr. Ben Carson, Glenn Beck, Dick Morris, Gov. Mike Huckabee and Dennis Prager