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From the vaults (aka mind) of a friend's political junkie of a Father in regards to the possibility of an electorate tie:

(Cross Posted from Daily Shocker)

  If you look at the state-by-state charts carefully, you will find that the possibility of a 269-269 tie is quite strong. Like, Obama wins Kerry states + (CO and IA and NM) but loses NH, or Obama wins Gore states + CO. See 12th Amendment.

   Here's what happens: States get one vote each from their congressional delegation. Currently, Dems have 26 state majorities, Reps have 22, and there are 2 ties. A majority is required (26), so anything other than a straight party vote leads to a deadlock, probably irresolvable.

   So, if it is not resolved by March 4, the VP becomes the President. Who is that? Well, the Senate meets, and under the current Senate Leiberman will vote with the Reps, and Cheney will break the tie, and it's Palin. Barring breaking of the House deadlock, she becomes President March 4.

   Dems will not let that happen, so they refuse to allow a quorum to seat for the Senate vote (34 stay away) until after the new Senate is seated in January. Then, a new Senate will have a stronger majority, and they will elect Biden. The only choice Rep Senators would have would be to refuse (34 of them) to show up for the Senate ever, so that the vote could not take place under the quorum rule. This is unlikely to maintain for long, and is a true constitutional crisis. So, they acquiese and show up, and Biden is elected VP, and in March becomes President. Then, most likely, he picks Obama for VP.

   Cool, huh?

So there will be no pampering of a lucky beer drinking American in the beltway? No hilarity will ensue? Come on, this is America. As far as I'm concerned, since the Republican VP pick was announced, this whole thing has been a big-ass David Zucker movie anyways.

In fact, the above hypothesis isn't even close to the totality of it all. You have to include all the lawsuits, counter-suits, injunctions, influence peddling, and back-room politics that will go down.

The chances are 1 in a 100, but I'd double down on it just for the amusement of watching it all go down.

What will happen to the talking heads in the event of a tie?

   * Karl Rove will mysteriously disappear from Fox News during the litigation
   * Keith Olbermann's head will explode
   * John King's magic wall will fall on him, killing him in a tragic accident on live television
   * Chris Matthews hair will finally go white
   * Rachel Maddow will comment on the ridiculousness of the situation and give a funny look to the camera
   * Bill O'Reilly will send his producers off to key the cars of the Dems lawyers
   * Greta Van Sustren and Nancy Grace will speculate on the harm this tie is doing to missing toddlers

Originally posted to paranoid lloyd on Mon Sep 22, 2008 at 04:28 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Rachel Maddow will get drunk on camera (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ford prefect 2, paranoid lloyd

    and then shave off Chris Matthews' hair as Keith Olbermann, giggle insanely, holds him down if there is a tie.

    Sent from a Blackberry, a miracle made possible and invented by John McCain

    by Larry Madill on Mon Sep 22, 2008 at 04:32:11 PM PDT

  •  Biden picks Obama as VP? (0+ / 0-)

    John McCain "Get Off My Lawns!!"

    by FORUS50 on Mon Sep 22, 2008 at 04:33:17 PM PDT

  •  Good musings, but quibble (0+ / 0-)

    The 20th Amendment changed Inauguration Day to January 19/20, so that would change the scenario outlined above.

  •  almost everything in the post is wrong (0+ / 0-)

    First, there are 27 Dem delegations (Mississippi flipped earlier this year).

    Second, the inauguration is January 20, not March 4.

    Third, the votes by the House and Senate are cast in January (on the 6th, I believe) and the new Congress casts the votes.  The current House and Senate are irrelevant.

    In the extremely unlikely event that the Dems don't have 26 states (and they are very likely to add NM and AK, giving 29), then Biden is elected by the Senate (easily) and would take office on January 20.

  •  Senate decides VP... (0+ / 0-)

    but does the Senate have to vote on the two VP candidates or can they vote on who they want?  Imagine this scenario: 269-269 tie, because of how some of the house races turn out dems have a plurality of state votes but not majority as required.  House remains deadlocked for weeks with no victor declared.  The morning of the 20th of Jan, senate votes to elect Obama the Vice President since all the dems need is a simple majority which they will surely have.  Since Bush and Cheney's terms expire at noon and no president has been elected the VP elect, Obama, automatically becomes president.  Is there any flaw in my logic other than it being completely crazy?

    •  no (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      the Senate must choose among the top two electoral vote getters.  Strangely, the House must choose among the top three...

      If the Senate couldn't choose (hard to see how that is possible, with 54-58 Senators), and the House stayed deadlocked.  President Pelosi is sworn in on the 20th.

      Of course, the House could elect Obama the Speaker just before then (the Speaker doesn't have to be a member of the House)...

  •  Additional Points (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    1.  The President is sworn in on January 20, not March 4, per the 20th amendment.
    1.  The NEW Congress convenes on January 4 and receives and counts the electoral ballots.
    1.  If there's a tie, then the NEW House votes for the President, while the Senate votes for the Vice President.
    1.  While the election of the President in the House is by state, with each state casting one vote, the election in the Senate is by majority vote, provided a quorum is present, per the 12th amendment.

    There would be enormous pressure on the members of the House.  Pressure to vote as their states voted.  Pressure to vote along party lines.  Pressure to vote for the winner of the popular vote.

    It seems likely, however, that the Senate would vote along party lines and elect Biden Vice President.  After the election it seems likely that there will be 55+ Democratic senators.

    Of course, if both chambers deadlock -- possible if the GOP prevents a quorum in the senate, for example -- then whomever the House elected as Speaker on January 4 becomes Acting President.

    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. -- Arthur C. Clarke

    by mathGuyNTulsa on Mon Sep 22, 2008 at 05:02:38 PM PDT

    •  Biden or Pelosi? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Of course, if both chambers deadlock -- possible if the GOP prevents a quorum in the senate, for example -- then whomever the House elected as Speaker on January 4 becomes Acting President.

      I think it's a safe bet the GOP will prefer President Biden to President Pelosi.

  •  Interesting diary (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Party line issues could occur in the senate too. Plenty of Dems representing states that Obama would lose in this scenario, and a few Republicans in Blue States too.

    On top of it being wrong anyway, why would Lieberman vote with the Republicans to allow a Cheney tie-break if it would result in a Palin presidency? No doubt he would support McCain in the event of tie, and would pressure red state Dems and blue state Republicans to achieve that end, but would he really support Palin for president over Biden? I don't like Lieberman much these days, but he's not always an idiot I doubt he really likes the Palin pick. Either on the experience factor or a grudge about being passed over, I bet he hates her.

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