New Mexico Senate endorses popular-vote system for president

New Mexico Senate adjourns after passing state budget plan

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) – New Mexico would join a movement to elect U.S. presidents by popular vote under a bill approved by the state Senate.

The Senate voted Monday in favor joining an inter-state compact that requires Electoral College voters to cast ballots for the national popular vote winner. Democrats backed the bill in a 26-16 vote along party lines. The bill now moves to the House.

States representing at least 270 electoral votes must join for the compact to function. Bill sponsor and Democratic Sen. Mimi Stewart of Albuquerque says 10 states have joined, with 165 electoral votes committed so far.

She worries that swing states are dominating presidential campaigns and decisions by sitting presidents. Opponents of the compact say small, rural states like New Mexico would be ignored under a popular-vote system.