Lawmakers want Electoral College based on popular vote

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A bipartisan group of Minnesota lawmakers wants the state to join a national movement to change the Electoral College system.

The legislators will push a bill that would give the state's electoral votes to whichever presidential candidate wins the national popular vote. Currently those votes go to whoever carries Minnesota. Supporters of the change complain that the presidential race is determined in just a handful of battleground states, and not by the nation as a whole.

DFL Sen. Ann Rest says using the popular vote to determine the president is an idea whose time has come. Rest and Republican Rep. Pat Garofalo are leading the effort in Minnesota. They want the state to join eight others that have passed the bill championed by the group National Popular Vote. The bill is written so that it takes effect only if-and-when states totaling 270 electoral votes pass the measure. 270 is the threshold needed to elect a president.

Rusty on your Electoral College knowledge? Never understood the thing in the first place?

Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions ... and there are quite a few.

And if that whets your appetite, here's a main course: a two-hour panel discussion looking at the pros and cons of the Electoral College and popular vote.

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