Thank You, Rick Santorum

What made me want to thank Rick yesterday was his most honest, righteous and true statement on Governor Corbett's scheme to rig future presidential elections by apportioning electoral votes by congressional district.
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I don't have many regrets in life. I've never climbed a mountain, but I've seen people doing it on TV. I have stopped to smell the roses. They smell awful. I haven't dedicated myself to a life of serving others, but I have dedicated my life to serving myself, and I am "others" to other people. So that's good.

However, there is one thing I have come to regret recently (yesterday, to be exact). I haven't spent nearly enough time thanking former Senator Rick Santorum.

When I truly introspect, there are reasons (OK, more like excuses) I haven't thanked Rick more. I mean, sure most of the stuff he stands for, on a scale of 1-100, 100 being the most evil, lands at about 345. But I'm not sure even that's really fair.

For example, I used to think it was horrific of him to compare loving, monogamous gay relations to "man on dog." But then I found out that Rick refers to welfare spending as "man on bison" and teaching evolution to "man on un-evolved monkey" and gun control as "man on dude without a gun" and tax increases as "man on Grover Norquist," which is actually quite disturbing. Rick just likes the whole "man on..." meme.

What made me really want to thank Rick yesterday was his most honest, righteous and true statement on Governor Corbett's scheme to rig future presidential elections by apportioning electoral votes by congressional district. First a little background:

Corbett's scheme is designed to ensure that his party always gets the majority of Pennsylvania's electoral votes. You see, Democrats have won PA the last five presidential elections. But Governor Corbett has brilliantly figured out the Democrat's dastardly and dishonest method of winning. They get more votes. (I told you it was shocking.)

People in parts of the state that tend to vote Democratic sometimes out vote those parts of the state that tend to vote Republican. Having more votes, they then claim that they should win the election. I think you see the problem here. This makes Republicans who voted for the losing candidate sad. And Corbett wishes to change the rules so as to reduce such sadness. "Turn that frown upside down!" he says. We shall guarantee that you win, and are not forced to come in second simply because you got fewer votes.

I would note parenthetically that when the people from places which tend to vote Republican out vote those that vote Democratic and say ... elect Corbett Governor: that's fine! His people are happy! And the people in Philadelphia who lose? Their sadness seems to trouble Governor Corbett less. Sadness at losing an election is just different in Venango County than it is in Philly.

In any event, Governor Corbett's plan is essentially affirmative action for Republican electors. Even if their candidate loses the state by 10 points, they are still guaranteed a 12-8 victory in the electoral college. But Governor Corbett claims "this is not about Republicans and Democrats" and "I'm not thinking about who will benefit."

Of course, it just so happens that his plan benefits his party's presidential candidates. Apparently Governor Corbett was utterly oblivious to this. He may not know yet, so please ask him to sit down if you plan to tell him. The shock might cause him to get the vapors.

I can relate. Once I was playing a chess tournament (reason #277 why I didn't get a date in high school) and I was losing. So I thought I'd light my opponent's hair on fire, just to lighten the mood, and then smash the chess board with a mallet. I had no idea that his forfeiture of the game followed by his months-long hospitalization would benefit me. Sometimes you are just lucky that way.

Anyway, back to Rick. Yesterday he was in DC when a reporter asked him if he supported the governor's electoral-college scheme. "I sure do!" he said, "The current system is kind of like man-on-Himalayan Bog Turtle..." Then he went on to say what everyone in the world already knows:

"Certainly, from the standpoint of a Republican, it's a winner," Santorum said. "Republicans will come out ahead in Pennsylvania in every election. The way Democrats win, they have two big cities with huge concentrations of voters -- and then overwhelm the rest of the state."

(This can be found at Politics PA.)

Let's examine this a bit. Rick's reason for supporting this scheme is laid out right there. It will be a "winner" from the stand-point of the Republican Party, which is clearly the basis on which we should be writing the rules of elections. In fact, Rick observes, "Republicans will come out ahead in Pennsylvania in every (Presidential) election." There it is. The entire purpose behind this proposal.

It is interesting that Rick would support the bill for this reason. He spends a lot of time with the Tea Party folks who wear their colonial garb and talk about their love of the founders and our beautiful system of democracy. I don't recall Jefferson and Madison and Adams talking a lot about rigging elections so the outcome is preordained.

Although, in fairness, if you go back to the original hand-written source materials for the federalist papers, you'll see that whereas it was commonly thought that Thomas Jefferson wrote about "preserving the Republic," it was actually "preserving the Republicans."

So now we know the truth, and the truth shall set us free. We can only wonder when Tom Corbett will level with the people of Pennsylvania. In the meantime, thank you, Rick Santorum. Thank you.

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