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Virginia Republicans back away from ‘three-fifths’ plan for black voters

This is the plan to gerrymander and monkey with electoral college mechanics to give rural whites disproportionate voting power. It's been put in motion in many swing states and so far hasn't gotten anywhere. Republicans seem to realize that people are aware of how toxic their plan is. So expect something sneakier down the road to preserve white hegemony.

Virginia Republicans back away from ‘three-fifths’ plan for black voters

First the good news: A Senate committee in the Virginia legislature shot down SB 723 — a proposal that would have moved away from one-person, one-vote to a gerrymandered system designed to give suburban and rural voters greater weight in decided state-wide elections.

The bad news, of course, is that Virginia Republicans seriously introduced and considered a proposal to move away from one-person, one-vote in favor of a system that would have discounted votes cast by “urban” voters (wink, wink).

That such a thing was even being considered is, as Josh Marshall says, “A big, big deal“:

Another way of looking at this is that the new system makes the votes of whites count for much more than non-whites — which is a helpful thing if you’re overwhelmingly dependent on white votes in a country that is increasingly non-white.

This all sounds pretty crazy. But it gets even crazier when you see the actual numbers. Here’s a very illustrative example. They’re already pushing a bill to do this in the Virginia legislature. Remember, Barack Obama won Virginia and got 13 electoral votes. But as Benjy Sarlin reported today in a series of posts, if the plan now being worked on would have been in place last November, Mitt Romney would have lost the state but still got 9 electoral votes to Obama’s 4. Think of that, two-thirds of the electoral votes for losing the state. If the Virginia plan had been in place across the country, as Republicans are now planning to do, Mitt Romney would have been elected president even though he lost by more than 5 million votes.

Remember, plans to do this are already underway in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio and other states in the Midwest.