Senator Chuck Wiger (DFL-Maplewood) introduced legislation Monday adding Minnesota to the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, which would guarantee Minnesota’s electoral votes to the winner of the popular vote. The legislation (S.F. 30) is being carried in the House by Representative Peter Fischer (DFL-Maplewood), and is co-authored by Senator Melissa Wiklund, Senator Aric Putnam, Senator Jen McEwen, and Senator Mary Kunesh.
“This is a common sense measure that would ensure the winner of the presidential election is the one selected by the American people, not an outdated relic of the 19th century,” said Senator Wiger. “Our elections shouldn’t hinge on the outcome of a handful of states, but instead rely on the overall will of the people throughout our country. This is a measure that would ensure people’s votes are respected, not disenfranchised.”
States that are members of the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact pledge their states’ electoral votes to the presidential and vice presidential candidates who win the national popular vote as opposed to the popular vote in their particular state.
Senator Wiger has consistently authored bills that would add Minnesota to the compact to elect the presidential slate by national popular vote. The compact will not take effect until enough states enact the compact that represent a majority of the total electoral votes nationwide. Currently, 15 states and the District of Columbia, totaling 196 electoral votes have enacted the compact, and only 74 more electoral votes are necessary to be committed to the compact for it to take effect.
In the past 20 years, two presidential candidates have lost the popular vote while winning the presidency, most recently in 2016. With the activation of the National Popular Vote Compact, more voters would be engaged, creating a more equitable system for electing the United States President.