California could eventually award its presidential Electoral votes to the candidate that wins the national popular vote. That’s one of several election-related bills Governor Jerry Brown signed Monday.
Right now, nearly every state awards its Electoral votes to whichever presidential candidate wins that particular state. California’s 55 Electoral votes nearly always go to a Democrat these days, so candidates typically don’t campaign here much.
The National Popular Vote movement seeks to change that dynamic. With the governor’s signature, California now joins eight other states that have pledged to award their Electoral votes to whoever gets the most votes nationwide. But that change will only take place if states with a combined 270 Electoral votes sign onto the effort. California’s participation brings the movement about halfway there.
Meanwhile, the governor also signed a bill that would require election officials to count write-in votes if a voter’s intent is clear – even if the voter didn’t fully follow the ballot instructions.