I have to say that while it seems that I’m the only Democrat in Bakersfield, I do think it’s rather unfair how such a chunk of our state is railroaded into their votes effectively not counting. The entire central valley is predominantly Republican, as well as Orange County (if I am remember Poli Sci Electoral Behavior in CA properly), but larger metro areas are taking over the electoral votes.
And because of the above, I do feel that the system needs to be changed in some way. It’s just inexcusable that such a large chunk of the state (which also pumps a TON of money into the state with oil and ag) is effectively being ignored or under (or un) represented. The million dollar question is, of course, what change can be made that will be better than the present system?
Frankly, I think just about anything is better than winner-take-all, but I do believe the best would be a split of the votes by percentages of total votes won (as has been mentioned here). While I don’t think that a district-by-district system is necessarily the best means of representing the people and working with what is really quite the archaic system, I do think that such a change would be better than the present system.
I’ve too heard the argument that switching our electoral vote allocation system would actually lead to California losing a substantial amount of it’s power, since our votes would be split; but I genuinely believe that if a large state would jump on the reform band wagon, national change could be made in a pretty sweeping fashion. As it stands, no other states want to lose their footing, particularly when you have an electoral powerhouse like California utilizing the old system, but I really do think that if a state other than Nebraska or Vermont would give it a try, others would follow suit.
Plus, breaking things down in such a way that things are determined on a more individual basis does nothing but bring democracy closer to the people. I can’t tell you how many folks I encounter around Kern County that don’t vote because, “Who cares? California always goes Democrat either way.” Democrats and Republicans alike say that because it’s true, no matter whether or not you vote, LA and San Fransisco will and what they want is what will determine our electoral votes.