Jacobson Passes “Faithless Electors” Legislation to Ensure that Presidential Votes Are Properly Counted

This week, Assemblymember Jonathan Jacobson (D-104) passed legislation (A928) requiring New York’s electoral voters to cast their ballots for the presidential and vice- presidential candidates who win the state’s popular vote in the November general election.

Jacobson said, “It’s common knowledge that voters don’t vote directly for Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates. Instead, they vote for electors representing each party’s candidate who are entrusted with the responsibility of casting their ballots in the electoral college in accordance with the popular vote. In most states, including New York, 100% of the electoral votes are to be cast for the candidate who wins their state’s popular vote.

“Unfortunately, in 2016, electors in Texas cast their vote for candidates other than Donald Trump, who won that state’s popular vote. That same year, four electors, from states where Hillary Clinton won the popular vote, cast their votes for other candidates,” Jacobson continued.

“In 2016, these “faithless electors” did not impact the result of the election, but the possibility that democracy could be subverted is deeply concerning. For an elector to vote for a candidate other than the one who was nominated by the party who nominated the elector would be a fraud on the voters. This bill would make it illegal for New York’s electors to cast their ballot for anyone other than the winner of the state’s popular vote. The will of the voters should be honored,” Jacobson concluded.

The bill has already passed in the Senate, where it was sponsored by Senator James Skoufis. It now awaits the Governor’s signature to become law.