2007 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Williamson, Jackson (11th), Dawkins, Lee (47th), Jordan, Walls, Simmons, Thomas
AN ACT TO ENACT INTO LAW THE AGREEMENT AMONG THE STATES TO ELECT THE PRESIDENT BY NATIONAL POPULAR VOTE AND PROVIDE THAT THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI ENTERS THE COMPACT WITH OTHER STATES THAT JOIN IN THE COMPACT; TO PROVIDE THAT UNDER THE COMPACT, THE PRESENT OF THE UNITED STATES BE ELECTED USING THE VOTE TOTAL FROM THE NATIONAL POPULAR VOTE; TO AMEND SECTION 23-15-785, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, IN CONFORMITY THERETO; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. The Agreement Among the States to Elect the President by National Popular Vote is enacted into law and entered into by this state with any and all states legally joining in the compact in accordance with its terms, in the form substantially as follows:
AGREEMENT AMONG THE STATES TO ELECT
THE PRESIDENT BY NATIONAL POPULAR VOTE
Any state of the United States and the District of Columbia may become a member of this agreement by enacting this agreement.
Right of the People in Member States of
Vote for President and Vice President
Each member state shall conduct a statewide popular election for President and Vice President of the United States.
Manner of Appointing Presidential Electors in Member States
Prior to the time set by law for the meeting and voting by the presidential electors, the chief election official of each member state shall determine the number of votes for each presidential slate in each state of the United States and in the District of Columbia in which votes have been cast in a statewide popular election and shall add such votes together to produce a "national popular vote total" for each presidential slate.
The chief election official of each member state shall designate the presidential slate with the largest national popular vote total as the "national popular vote winner."
The presidential elector certifying official of each member state shall certify the appointment in that official's own state of the elector slate nominate in that state in association with the national popular vote winner.
At least six (6) days before the day fixed by law for the meeting and voting by the presidential electors, each member state shall make a final determination of the number of popular votes cast in the state for each presidential slate and shall communicate an official statement of such determination within twenty-four (24) hours to the chief election official of each other member state.
The chief election official of each member state shall treat as conclusive an official statement containing the number of popular votes in a state for each presidential slate made by the day established by federal law for making a state's final determination conclusive as to the counting of electoral votes by Congress.
In the event of a tie for the national popular vote winner, the presidential elector certifying official of each member state shall certify the appointment of the elector slate nominate in association with the presidential slate receiving the largest number of popular votes within that official's own state.
If, for any reason, the number of presidential electors nominate in a member state in association with the national popular vote winner is less than or greater than that state's number of electoral votes, the presidential candidate on the presidential slate that has been designated as the national popular vote winner shall have the power to nominate the presidential electors for that state and that state's presidential elector certifying official shall certify the appointment of such nominees. The chief election official of each member state shall immediately release to the public all vote counts or statements of votes as they are determined or obtained.
This article shall govern the appointment of presidential electors in each member state in any year in which this agreement is, on July 20, in effect in states cumulatively possessing a majority of the electoral votes.
This agreement shall take effect when states cumulatively possessing a majority of the electoral votes have enacted this agreement in substantially the same form and the enactments by such states have taken effect in each state.
Any member state may withdraw from this agreement, except that a withdrawal occurring six (6) months or less before the end of a President's term shall not become effective until a President or Vice President shall have been qualified to serve the next term.
The chief executive of each member state shall promptly notify the chief executive of all other states of when this agreement has been enacted and has taken effect in that official's state, when the state has withdrawn from this agreement, and when this agreement takes effect generally.
This agreement shall terminate if the electoral college is abolished.
If any provision of this agreement is held invalid, the remaining provisions shall not be affected.
For purposes of this agreement:
"Chief executive" means the Governor of a state of the United States or the Mayor of the District of Columbia;
"Elector slate" means a slate of candidates who have been nominated in a state for the position of presidential elector in association with a presidential slate;
"Chief election official" means the state official or body that is authorized to certify the total number of popular votes for each presidential slate;
"Presidential elector" means an elector for President and Vice President of the United States;
"Presidential elector certifying official" means the state official or body that is authorized to certify the appointment of the state's presidential electors;
"Presidential slate" means a slate of two (2) persons, the first of whom has been nominated as a candidate for President of the United States and the second of whom has been nominated as a candidate for Vice President of the United States, or any legal successors to such persons, regardless of whether both names appear on the ballot presented to the voter in a particular state;
"State" means a state of the United States and the District of Columbia; and
"Statewide popular election" means a general election in which votes are cast for presidential slates by individual voters and counted on a statewide basis.
SECTION 2. Section 23-15-785, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
23-15-785. Except as otherwise provided in Section 1 of Senate Bill No. 2284, 2007 Regular Session:
(a) When presidential electors are to be chosen, the Secretary of State of Mississippi shall certify to the circuit clerks of the several counties the names of all candidates for President and Vice President who are nominated by any national convention or other like assembly of any political party or by written petition signed by at least one thousand (1,000) qualified voters of this state.
(b) The certificate of nomination by a political party convention must be signed by the presiding officer and secretary of the convention and by the chairman of the state executive committee of the political party making the nomination. Any nominating petition, to be valid, must contain the signatures as well as the addresses of the petitioners. Such certificates and petitions must be filed with the State Board of Election Commissioners by filing the same in the office of the Secretary of State not less than sixty (60) days previous to the day of the election.
(c) Each certificate of nomination and nominating petition must be accompanied by a list of the names and addresses of persons, who shall be qualified voters of this state, equal in number to the number of presidential electors to be chosen. Each person so listed shall execute the following statement which shall be attached to the certificate or petition when the same is filed with the State Board of Election Commissioners: "I do hereby consent and do hereby agree to serve as elector for President and Vice President of the United States, if elected to that position, and do hereby agree that, if so elected, I shall cast my ballot as such for _______ for President and _______ for Vice President of the United States" (inserting in said blank spaces the respective names of the persons named as nominees for said respective offices in the certificate to which this statement is attached).
(d) The State Board of Election Commissioners and any other official charged with the preparation of official ballots shall place on such official ballots the words "PRESIDENTIAL ELECTORS FOR (here insert the name of the candidate for President, the word 'AND' and the name of the candidate for Vice President)" in lieu of placing the names of such presidential electors on such official ballots, and a vote cast therefor shall be counted and shall be in all respects effective as a vote for each of the presidential electors representing such candidates for President and Vice President of the United States. In the case of unpledged electors, the State Board of Election Commissioners and any other official charged with the preparation of official ballots shall place on such official ballots the words "UNPLEDGED ELECTOR(S) (here insert the name(s) of individual unpledged elector(s) if placed upon the ballot based upon a petition granted in the manner provided by law stating the individual name(s) of the elector(s) rather than a slate of electors)."
SECTION 3. The Attorney General of the State of Mississippi shall submit this act, immediately upon approval by the Governor, or upon approval by the Legislature subsequent to a veto, to the Attorney General of the United States or to the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in accordance with the provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.
SECTION 4. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after the date it is effectuated under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, as amended and extended.