Matthew Yglesias has a devious plan for swinging the election to Kerry:
It was recently brought to my attention that my grandparents, strongly pro-Kerry Jews like so many others, who split their time between the great, but decidedly non-swing, state of New York, and the less great, but decidedly more swingy, state of Florida are still registered to vote in New York. I am encouraging them to rectify this situation, and I would encourage other readers who may have similarly situated family members to do the same.
Presumably, this is legal so long as they don’t vote in two states (although there’s essentially no way that they’d be caught if they did). If we’re going to continue to use the Electoral College as a means of electing presidents, however, it would seem reasonable to create federalized rules to govern this sort of thing. No one should have residency rights in more than one state.
Of course, that problem pales with that of non-citizens voting:
When decision time comes this autumn, the real swing votes in the 2004 presidential election may not come from Pennsylvania, Ohio, or even the notorious Florida. The ultimate Bush-Kerry battleground may turn out to be somewhere more far-flung and unexpected—Israel, Britain, even Indonesia. And both political camps say they are getting ready for the fight, courting American voters who are living overseas and taking no chances that the expatriate vote will undermine them at the finish line. Although an official census has never been taken, between 4 million and 10 million American citizens are believed to be living abroad. Those over 18 are entitled to have their absentee votes counted in the state where they last lived—no matter how long ago that was. And many are planning to do just that.
***Contrary to widespread belief, it was more likely American voters in Israel, not Florida, who put George W. Bush in the White House four years ago—a phenomenon that has John Kerry’s supporters in Israel vowing to do whatever it takes to make certain that doesn’t happen again in November.
While Allah thinks this is “sweet,” it seems absurd to me to allow expatriates to vote. Obviously, Americans overseas on assignment from their government are an exception. But people who have chosen to abandon the country to live elsewhere should have no say in choosing our government.