Or at least making it completely irrelevant.
The timing for this is a little odd since Romney is doing better in the popular vote and his big barrier is cracking the electoral college.
The approach, proposed by the head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, wouldn’t abolish the Electoral College, but would give the winner of the popular vote an extra 29 electoral votes, which would reduce the electoral college to a complete formality and nullify another big chunk of the “States” part of the United States.
Considering who it comes from, it can’t be entirely dismissed as more wackiness from a crazy congressman, it is however fairly unrealistic to imagine a Constitutional amendment being shepherded through on such a controversial issue. It would be easier to imagine some future Supreme Court packed full of Wise Latinas deciding that the electoral college and state based elections discriminate against the minority vote and are therefore unconstitutional.
Swing states are not about to toss away the advantage that comes with being able to determine elections and the attention that comes with it. Population heavy states would benefit from this arrangement. Many smaller states would not and the act of passing an amendment by bypass the states would require getting it through the states and that’s a paradox that renders it unworkable.
The one good thing that can be said for the popular vote is that it liberates trapped votes in red and blue states. That would certainly be a factor in California where immigration has overrun the states with Democratic dole voters, where McCain got 5 million votes in 2008 but none of which went to McCain. Or New York where he picked up 2.7 million votes and none in the electoral college. But that could be done by backing away from the winner-takes-all system that dominates most states, a system that benefits the dominant political party in a state. This is the case in Nebraska, where Obama lost in 2008, but still picked up one electoral vote.